iPhone 5 rollout draws big crowds worldwide

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NEW YORK (AFP) – Apple fans queued in Asia, Europe and North America on Friday for the new iPhone 5, which appeared set to break sales records despite lukewarm reviews and complaints about its mapping system.
The crowds of eager buyers looked set to make the latest iPhone a huge commercial success for the trend-setting US tech giant. Some analysts say Apple may sell 10 million in just the first days of the launch.
“I’ve been waiting for eight days, I’m so happy right now,” said Keenen Thompson, one of the first among several hundred people outside the Apple store on New York’s Fifth Avenue.
First in line at Montreal’s Apple store was Jonathan Moreau, 28, who said he would replace his iPhone 4S “which I don’t use for work, but just for me.” The new model, he said, “is faster, with a better display, a better camera.”
At the Apple store in Bethesda, Maryland, Kirsten Mentzer, a university student who came with her sister and parents to get the new gadget, secured the first spot. “It’s fun to spend time with other Apple friends,” she said. “I’ve always been part of the Apple community. My parents raised me on an old MacBook.”
Mike Bishop of Bethesda said he was “really excited” about the new iPhone and had been waiting to replace his broken iPhone 4.
Asked if he would consider another phone, Bishop said: “Once you use an iPhone, you don’t go back to any other brand. The main thing is the refinement at every level.”
Australians were the first to get their hands on the device.