Thousands of customers waited outside of Apple stores across the country for the release of the Apple iPhone 5, which included new features enhancing the previous iPhone 4S, on Sept. 21.
The new iPhone included a bigger screen, a lighter and slimmer frame, faster processor, and a 4G wireless connection. It is 18 percent thinner and 20 percent lighter than the current version and is made entirely out of glass and aluminum. This phone brought in 2 million pre-orders, double the number of pre-orders for the iPhone 4S.
Despite issues that have already come up with the technology behind the phone before the initial release, fans still waited hours, even days, outside of stores to be one of the first to get the phone. Lines were 83 percent longer than for the iPhone 4S, with more than 800 people outside of the Apple store in New York City, according to an analyst.
Most people endure this wait simply for the experience. Fans gather, talk to each other, and wait together, calling themselves the “iPhone family.” Some even call it a festival or party, being with many other excited fans waiting for the same merchandise. Some people took off work or even missed their flights just to wait in line for the iPhone 5. One freshman at Bloomsburg University, Alycia Humphrey, who ordered the iPhone 5 online, says she’s “so excited about it.” She previously did not have an iPhone of any kind and is anxious to be a part of the majority of the student population who do.
The hype that comes with the release of a new Apple product demonstrates how technology dependent the world has become. Everyone seems to have a smartphone and always has it with them. No longer are the days when one would ask, “Do you have a cell phone?” It is now just a generally known fact that everybody in our society has a cell phone, most likely a smartphone. When a working person is not in the office, it used to be that they could not be reached. Now, with their cell phone, they are accessible no matter where they are, making office hours a thing of the past.
College students are especially involved in this technological phenomenon. Most students have an iPhone or another smartphone. The minority who do not, usually feel the same as BU student Emily Edinger, who said, “because I do not have a smartphone and no access to the internet or other features on my phone as other students do, I feel like I am at a disadvantage.” Of course, having on-the-go internet and other various applications is always helpful when stuck with a difficult question on a homework assignment or simply bored and in need of a distraction or entertainment.
Some others aren’t as upset that they are not involved in this technological phase. Victor Chatman, a sophomore student at BU says he doesn’t mind not having an iPhone, “I don’t have a smartphone and I’m perfectly fine with it. I have everything I need with just a regular phone”. However true this statement may be, the viewpoint seems to be among the minority among college students.
The endless applications that can be bought from the App Store on an iPhone are inarguably very helpful with homework, organization, and productivity. These apps can also entertain with games and social networking applications that can be accessed anywhere with the 3G feature on the iPhone. Jenelle Yarger, a freshman BU student comments on the way that college students use their phone, “I feel that college students rely on their phones for everything. They always have them with them and seem to be constantly using features on their phones for classes as well as entertainment”.
Some may argue that technology has gone too far and that the teenage population is obsessed with it. BU student Jacob Kelley would agree, “When you sit in a class and look around, everyone is on some sort of technology. Nobody is talking to each other.” This seems to be true and is visible to anybody walking into a college lecture hall. Instead of talking to each other, students hide behind their phone screens and talk to their friends on their phone rather than making new friends with the people around them at any given moment.
Technology seems to have taken over the world. The thousands of people waiting in line for the new iPhone 5 seem to fit the mold perfectly. The teenage generation is mostly dependent upon technology, using it for everything and always being accessible through our cellular phones, which seem to be constantly improving and being updated.