I love Apple hardware events and all the reveals. This year was a little light on those thanks to all of the leaks, but there were still bits and pieces to be enjoyed. I also love getting my hands on new Apple hardware. It’s the getting up at 1:45 AM Central part that I’m not so thrilled with.
Last year, I wrote that it was time for Apple to move the pre-order process into the modern age, and set up a weighted lottery for the initial iPhone rollout. Reader opinions were more mixed than I expected, but I still think there are better ways that Apple could address device releases. But there’s no sense in griping about it at this point. For the time being, it is what it is.
I am happy that Apple at least made things easier on those of us using the iPhone Upgrade Program last year. I got an email right after the announcement event prompting me to get pre-approved if I wanted to pre-order. I was set and ready to get a 256 MB Gold iPhone XS Max by 3 PM Wednesday. Smooth as silk. Last year, I was able to get in using the Apple Store app and was checked out before 2:10 AM. And then back to bed.
As for the 44mm Apple Watch I’m shooting for, that may be a different story. I went into the Apple Store app and Favorited the Space Gray Aluminum Cellular model to help things along, but I won’t be the only one doing that. That’s a well-known trick, at this point. By the time I get done with the phone, I may be well back in the line for the Watch. Yeah, I know. First world problems, to be sure.
I would love to see Apple expand the now mature concept of the iPhone Upgrade Program beyond just the iPhone in the future. I can understand why it might be difficult for Apple to do this with the iPad, iPad Pro, or Mac. However, the Apple Watch seems like the perfect next step. It’s smaller and less expensive. It is currently still subordinate to the iPhone. If you get the cellular version of the Watch, it even shares your phone’s plan and phone number. If Apple bundled these two hit devices together under one yearly or bi-yearly upgrade program, it would bring more people in, and add more of that sustainable Services revenue that they love so much these days. Come on, Apple. Make it happen.
With a 1:45 wake up call coming, it’s almost time for bed. Are you doing the pre-order dance? If so, what are you getting? An iPhone? A Watch? Both? Let me know on Flipboard, our Facebook page, on Twitter, or on our new Instagram account.