For Those Who Are Interested, The Story of My Sleepless Night

Thinking that the iPhone 4S would sell out within a matter of mere minutes, I got everything that could be setup, setup and ready with my Apple account. I woke up at 2:50 AM (EST) this morning and made refresh on Apple’s Store page my best friend. At the promised time, which was 3:01 AM for me, there was no update to the page, due to an overload of customers, and I became accustomed to pressing the refresh button literally every few seconds for the next forty minutes until the preorder page finally went live – this was just the beginning of my sleepless, long night.

I was prompted to select my desired color, capacity and carrier upon clicking on the designated iPhone-preorder page followed by me having to enter the last four digits of my social security number, my wireless number, my billing zip code and my AT&T wireless password. If you’re familiar with the process, then you’ll know that Apple then checks in with your carrier to obtain eligibility to upgrade info and such, which is where the trouble started:

Every time I typed/selected the information stated above, the page would take multiple minutes to process and would end up with some sort of error message without fail: timed out, HTTP error, etc. It truly was annoying and a bit unnerving especially after happening tons of times and happening right when I was about to finalize my order once after I broke through the initial wall of error messages.

At about 4:30 AM, Apple stated that they couldn’t take any further preorders. I was too overwhelmed, so immediately shut my laptop and headed back to sleep. But, I had to try one more time, of course…

Who ever formulated the contingency plan, which was executed after my fifty-billionth attempt, is an absolute genius is my mind; my only gripe was that Apple got the cue from their overflowing servers a bit too late. What was the backup, unofficially named Plan B? After entering the above, above above information, Apple displayed the message that an iPhone was reserved for me. They would thereafter email me when they were ready for me to finalize my purchase. It’s obvious that this was done in an attempt to give everyone a chance to get their hands on the new phone come next Friday by letting a number of people in in waves throughout the day.

It was evident that Apple’s servers were taking a huge hit. The store page took longer than usual to load, the processing pages took minute after minute to constantly return with errors, and all the while I was on Twitter streaming tweets of people triumphantly celebrating that they had woken up five minutes before to successfully preorder the phone; heck, I had been sitting there for hours! Plus, after I received my email in the morning with confirmation for me to finalize my purchase, and I was in the process of finalizing my purchase, everything stated above went past in a jiffy.

There’s an old saying: “All’s well that ends well.” I’m just happy that I finally managed to preorder the phone. If you’re still debating whether or not to get the phone, I think that Apple is still taking orders, but I did see a mention of a reserve list somewhere. Just give this link a try.