Apple has its product launches down to a science. But sometimes issues arise and not everyone can (or is willing to) remain in-line for several hours. That’s why Apple is set to revamp the purchase process for the iPhone 6 launch.
In the past, customers who lined up for a new product were given paper cards specifying the exact product configuration they wished to purchase. These cards helped stores keep tabs on product quantities and reassured customers that they weren’t wasting time waiting in line only to find out the product they want is sold out.
According to training materials shared with Apple retail employees this morning, Apple will forgo the traditional paper cards and instead place customers in a virtual queue. This new system is called Reservation Pass. It will sync with Back Of House inventory information in realtime so Apple doesn’t handout too many product reservations. Customers will receive their digital reservation card via SMS or Email. A reservation allows the customer to come back at any point during the day to make their purchase. Customers could also leave line in the past but it was not encouraged since the physical card reservation system was not as accurate as the new Reservation Pass system.
One of the motivating factors behind this new system is that it affords customers the opportunity to take care of unforeseen issues before coming into the store. For example, customers can get their digital iPhone 6 reservation then leave line to pay an outstanding carrier bill or sort out any FAN discounts. This should help ease launch day anxiety amongst customers and help Apple stores better manage available inventory.
As a reminder, the iPhone 6 will be available for preorder beginning Friday, September 12th and will be available for purchase on Friday, September 19th.