I went to the launch event in the anticipation that Singtel would screw up, but sadly, everything went well (to a certain extent. An extent that no one else may have noticed or even gotten bothered with). It all started at 7pm.
CY decided to buy the new iPhone for his girlfriend. I decided to tag along to chou ri nao (join in the fun). Since that would be my first time at an Apple launch event, I agreed to delay my bedtime to enjoy the atmosphere (and now I know how people felt at the past WWDCs and stuff).
After dinner and some shopping @ Carrefour (Carrefour has a DVD sale at the Tropics Atrum, go check it out), we walked for about 15 minutes from Marina Square’s carpark (which is much cheaper than MBS).
Walking past the eerily quiet casino with a handful of people withdrawing money from the ATMs at the entrance, we reached the Convention Centre. Nothing whatsoever hints of a launch event happening. Looking at the pictures above, there were no throngs of people rushing to Hall 7, no huge LED signboards, no stewards to guide us in. The security guards also bo-chup us.
We did some research before going there, thus we knew that Hall F is in Basement 2. Singtel could have done much better in displaying the directions to the hall. There was only ONE small signboard directing us to the correct hall Still, isn’t such a big issue.
Lo and behold, there were no mad queues outside the event venue. The long lines of barricades just seem so empty. Kudos to Singtel for over-preparing. Loads of security personnel which were really strict in verifying your identity and appointment timeslot. It was as though they over-anticipated the number of people coming. A note, the 3-5am queue already had some people in there already (they were let in eventually at around 1 am though).
Absence of queue lines. How awesome. After they verified my friend’s particulars, we were allowed into the ‘party zone’. haha. The party zone is an enlarged Hell(o)! Store. But again, Singtel didn’t screw up. They were so organised. (Pictures below)
- Their queue lines (both verification, and collection) flowed really quickly
- They had 80 counters, 80 individual counters to handle the collection process. When the clock striked 12, it took almost a good 1/2 hour for the queue system to direct customers to the 80th counter
- They had a super huge area filled with U-shaped huts for plugging and testing your new iPhone 4 (before the launch, people with 3Gs-es use those dock connectors to charge their phones. haha)
Again, Singtel didn’t screw up, this time round, Starhub did. Disappointed with Starhub’s way of handling the launch of the iPhone. Starhub, don’t neglect your loyal customers. You will regret it. Soon, real soon.