1. oalvarez's Avatar
    AT&T hires 2,000 workers for iPhone
    Carrier prepares for rush at stores for June 29 debut
    Reuters
    Updated: 12:49 p.m. PT June 21, 2007
    NEW YORK - AT&T Inc. said Thursday it has hired 2,000 temporary store workers to handle its much-hyped introduction of the iPhone, the first cell phone from iPod music player maker Apple Inc.

    AT&T will be the only carrier to offer the device when it goes on sale June 29. AT&T and Apple said they plan to start selling the device starting at 6 p.m. local time in cities across the country.

    AT&T spokesman Mark Siegel said the company hired the extra summer staff for its 1,800 stores in anticipation of significant demand for the device. AT&Ts wireless division employs a total of about 58,000 people.

    The iPhone, announced in January, combines a music and video player with a Web browser and a touch-sensitive screen in place of a keyboard.

    AT&T sales staff have received a total of 100,000 hours of training to sell the device, at the high end of the normal range with an average of six hours per employee, said Siegel.

    Apple, which plans to start selling the phone in all of its 162 retail stores on June 29, did not disclose any plans around training or staffing for the launch.

    Apple will also start selling the phone online on the launch date, but AT&T will sell only in its stores at launch.

    This is such an important product we want to make sure people are fully informed, when they buy it, said Siegel.


    AT&T stores will close locally at 4:30 p.m. on that Friday to prepare for the launch, then reopen at 6 p.m. until 10 p.m. that night, according to Siegel.

    We want to free people from the rush of what they would normally encounter on a busy day, he said.

    AT&T, which is requiring iPhone shoppers to sign up for a two-year contract, has not yet revealed the service fees it will charge iPhone customers. The iPhone will cost $500 or $600, depending on the storage space in the phone.
    06-21-2007 05:04 PM
  2. tirk's Avatar
    Why am I reminded of one of these?
    06-21-2007 06:51 PM
  3. oalvarez's Avatar
    funny, TIrk...seriously
    06-22-2007 12:03 AM
  4. Kupe#WP's Avatar
    I just got back from two weeks from now:
    AT&T fires 2,000 workers
    Carrier corrects over-hiring spree after June 29 debacle
    Reuters
    Updated: 13:23 p.m. PT July 3, 2007
    NEW YORK - AT&T Inc. said Monday it has fired 2,000 temporary store workers after its over-hyped introduction of the iPhone, the first cell phone from iPod music player maker Apple Inc, turned sour.

    AT&T is the only carrier to offer the device, however, all the real sales of the phone took place at Apple Stores instead.

    AT&T spokesman Mark Siegel said, "Who knew the professionals at the Apple Stores could run so many customers through in such a short period of time?" He added, "I guess customers are expecting a better experience than you get with those rousted subway station bums we hired."

    AT&T's 58,000 strong sales staff received a total of 100,000 hours of training to sell the device or an average of 90 minutes for each employee. The new-hires were each given 15 minutes training which focused on how to log onto the cash register.

    We assumed all the iPhone fan-boys would just come in, throw down their money, and walk out with the phone, said Siegel. "Next thing we knew, they started asking questions about how iPhones worked, our employees stared back like deer in the headlights, and the customers stomped out in search of the nearest Apple Store."

    We were hoping for a big payday by riding a winner's coat tails, he said. "I hope we do better with iPhone2 in August...oops! That's off the record!"
    One week to go!
    06-22-2007 08:15 AM
  5. italiangspot's Avatar
    Launch logistics:
    The iPhone goes on sale at 6 p.m. (local time in each market) on Friday, June 29. It will be available only at AT&T-owned stores, Apple stores and online at apple.com. A list of the AT&T stores will be available online before launch.

    Ordering, pricing, models:
    We are not taking preorders from customers. The iPhone will be available for sale beginning June 29 strictly on a first come, first served basis. There will be two models at launch, a 4-GB model for $499 and an 8-GB model for $599.
    06-22-2007 08:51 AM
  6. dstrauss#IM's Avatar
    An average of 1 employee per store...to sell mybe 40 per store? Or are they just hiring rent-a-cop for crowd control?

    I started out pretty impressed in January, but as time has passed, and prices have dropped ($74 for a NEW Blackjack with a 2 yr contract) there just doesn't seem to be as much whiz-bang as justifies a $599 price.
    06-22-2007 09:16 AM
  7. tirk's Avatar
    I started out pretty impressed in January, but as time has passed, and prices have dropped ($74 for a NEW Blackjack with a 2 yr contract) there just doesn't seem to be as much whiz-bang as justifies a $599 price.
    I suspect that the vast majority of buyers only care about the brand name. I can't wait to start saying "you paid HOW much??" to owners (though I'll probably get tired of saying "my phone does that too" fairly soon).
    06-22-2007 10:12 AM
  8. mikec#IM's Avatar
    I suspect that the vast majority of buyers only care about the brand name. I can't wait to start saying "you paid HOW much??" to owners (though I'll probably get tired of saying "my phone does that too" fairly soon).
    How true...brand, brand brand.

    And "it's cool".

    But $600, plus $2,000 in AT&T contract for 2 years?

    I think the move is to wait until Xmas, when they wll go on sales (or the unlock/multi-network hacks are in place.)
    06-22-2007 10:59 AM
  9. dstrauss#IM's Avatar
    How true...brand, brand brand.

    And "it's cool".

    But $600, plus $2,000 in AT&T contract for 2 years?

    I think the move is to wait until Xmas, when they wll go on sales (or the unlock/multi-network hacks are in place.)
    Cool...true...in fact, I just love the Apple marketing machine which advertises it is the BEST iPod they ever made - so gee Dad, I just wanted a new iPod and they threw in this neat phone to boot...
    06-22-2007 11:42 AM
  10. littlewaywelt's Avatar
    due respect many ppl paid $400 for treos when they came out. I for one will be picking up an iPhone and while it may have slightly less capability than a treo, I suspect it will work perfectly right out the box unlike treo.

    The 4gb iPhone is maybe $200 more than a Treo on verizon over 2 years. big deal.

    The iPhone will be perfect and far more useful, I suspect to the average non-techy customer than a treo. In my estimation few ppl need the fuctionality a tricked out treo provides. The genius of this phone is that it will bring a simple os phone, with email, media and mobile web to the masses in a tech friendly way. Few ppl really need the ability to do excel on a phone, look at pdfs, stream slingbox, etc.
    06-22-2007 02:13 PM
  11. braj's Avatar

    I think the move is to wait until Xmas, when they will go on sales
    Apple products don't really go on sale ever. Unlike other companies, Apple products usually only vary maybe $5 from vendor to vendor. And I expect the iPhone will be a big hit so no reason to discount it to generate sales.
    06-22-2007 02:19 PM
  12. oalvarez's Avatar
    The iPhone will be perfect and far more useful, I suspect to the average non-techy customer than a treo. In my estimation few ppl need the fuctionality a tricked out treo provides. The genius of this phone is that it will bring a simple os phone, with email, media and mobile web to the masses in a tech friendly way. Few ppl really need the ability to do excel on a phone, look at pdfs, stream slingbox, etc.
    i wholeheartedly agree and say so because i want to make sure some realize that i'm not the only one that feels this way.
    06-22-2007 02:23 PM
  13. treobk214's Avatar
    An average of 1 employee per store...to sell mybe 40 per store? Or are they just hiring rent-a-cop for crowd control?

    I started out pretty impressed in January, but as time has passed, and prices have dropped ($74 for a NEW Blackjack with a 2 yr contract) there just doesn't seem to be as much whiz-bang as justifies a $599 price.

    Well they have to have the appropriate personnel required to deal with all the impressionable numbskulls who will be rushing through their doors for the iphone, don`t they?
    06-22-2007 02:34 PM
  14. dstrauss#IM's Avatar
    Well they have to have the appropriate personnel required to deal with all the impressionable numbskulls who will be rushing through their doors for the iphone, don`t they?
    Do you think we'll see this at AT&T stores next week:
    http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/15764297/
    06-22-2007 03:17 PM
  15. treobk214's Avatar
    Wow, dstrauss. Those people should be locked away for a while after that sort of insanity. People are nuts! But you know what? I would say yes. I'd be willing to bet we'll hear about a number of asinine incidents similar to that when the iphone debuts.

    Pathetic.
    06-22-2007 03:54 PM
  16. mikec#IM's Avatar
    I intend to go down to the hood, get some OGs, and wait outside the Apple Stores....when they come out with the phone, blamo! Snatch and run.

    Mayhem will ensue.

    It'll be on eBay in 15 minutes later.

    I wonder how many nutjobs freakout when only 10 handsets are available at each store, and they are already bought up by the employees.

    "Look at this cool iPhone...we're sold out...come back in 30/60/90 days"
    06-22-2007 04:00 PM
  17. dstrauss#IM's Avatar
    My bet is it is going to be a zoo. There was already a joke runnig on the internet about the "iPhone slap" that it was so big you could "slap and snatch" when they put it up to their ear to answer a call.
    06-22-2007 04:53 PM
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