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NEW YORK (CAP) - Even as Apple grapples with its biggest public relations snafu since the introduction of the Apple III in 1980, fanboys refuse to be daunted, holding onto the hope that the CEO in which they're all endowed will stop trying to sell them bandaids for their iPhone 4's and just do what's right: come out with the iPhone 5.
Despite the fact that Apple continues to make and market their reception-challenged iPhone 4, that hasn't stopped fans from lining up at Apple stores throughout the country to await the announcement, production and arrival of a new version of the phone that actually works more than 50 feet from a cell tower.
"I don't even own an iPhone, but I know iPhone 5 is gonna be much more awesome than that iPhone 4," said 26-year-old Maurice Darkin, who has already been camped outside Apple's flagship Soho store in New York for two weeks. "Hopefully it doesn't take too long, though, because I only brought three sandwiches."
Although the first in line, Darkin is not the last. Over the past couple of weeks, others have strolled up to take their place in line, sleeping bag in one hand, iPhone 4 held delicately in the other, a frenzied look of anxiety on their pudgy little faces. Most of them don't have jobs, and the few who do said they can bag groceries anywhere.
"Oh, I'm not worried," said 46-year-old Bruce Murphy from his spot half a dozen places behind Darkin. "As long as I still have my job in Second Life, then I'm doing okay. And mom said my room's not going anywhere."
Those in the various lines have been whiling away their time playing such games as Second Life or multi-player Minesweeper, thanks to a combination of WiFi hotspots and wireless ISP connections. Lines in different cities have even been communicating with each other via The Spork Chatroom.
"I missed out on the iPhone 4 because I was busy upgrading my early 50's equipment in World Of Warcraft with some level 60 stuff," said 38-year-old Drew Russet, first in line at the Apple store in San Francisco. "But now my tanking spec is awesome, so I'm ready to get the next iPhone, LOL."
The mood among the faithful in line is patient and hopeful, with brother helping brother through these dark times of dropped calls and sapped signal strength. They regale each other with stories of yesteryear when companies would make sure the main function of their product actually worked before adding new functions, of memories of family and friends with whom they long to communicate but cannot reach.
"A guy walking by let me borrow his Android so I could call my boss and tell him I'm going to be late this month," said one man in the Soho line. "Probably next month, too, but I don't want to get ahead of myself."
"I found this phone down the street attached to the side of a building. It was like a giant iPhone without the screen," said another man. "I was going to call my buddy to let him know about this weird contraption, but I couldn't figure out how to turn it on. Epic fail."
The iPhone 5 craze has proven to be a boon for professional line waiters who figure to be employed for quite some time, considering that any sort of new iPhone is nowhere near market. They say the toughest battle they face is trying to avoid being paid in Everquest Platinum pieces as opposed to real currency.
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