updated 10:29 am EDT, Mon September 17, 2012
Early joiners exploiting line for publicity
A lineup has already formed outside of Apple's flagship Fifth Avenue store in New York City in advance of the Friday launch of the iPhone 5. Since preorders are already sold out, lining up at retail stores may now be the only way of getting a 5 on September 21st. A number of the first people in line at Fifth Avenue, however, are reportedly there only for the sake of publicity.
An AppleInsider reader notes that several of the people are hoping to promote websites, and were this morning being interviewed for a CBS New York show, The Couch. Fortune elaborates, pointing out that two people are promoting a company called Vibe, while several others are being sponsored by resale site Gazelle, and are decked out in their advertising.
Fifth Avenue is often the focus of TV news coverage during any iPhone launch. The store has become increasingly less important to actual sales, though, since the device is now available from a variety of carriers and third-party outlets, and Apple has improved overall supply. Apple has also expanded its retail footprint in New York City, adding locations and upgrading its SoHo store.