Saturday Superstore

MacFormat readers queued overnight to be first in Apple's new Regent Street store on 20 November. The store is not only Apple's first in Europe, but it's the biggest one in the world. The grand opening attracted 11,000 people, with 1,000 braving a cold winter night to secure free T-shirts and the chance of buying a lucky bag of mystery Apple gear. As the line grew and the temperature dropped, MacFormat kept a diary of the minute-by-minute happenings...

Friday 19 November: 23.00 hrs
It's the night before the big opening and there are already about 130 people queuing outside the Apple Store. First in line is Stormy Shippy from Dallas, Texas, who has been here since yesterday lunchtime. He had planned to get here later, but after reading a post on his blog ( that suggested others were already here, Stormy rushed down to Regent Street just hours after his flight had landed in London. "Lo and behold, no one was here and I made first in line - I'm quite proud of myself," he says. Underneath Regent Street's Christmas lights, a constant stream of drunken Friday night revellers pass the line, but the mood remains good-natured, with the front of the crowd answering even the most incoherent of enquiries. With the night so cold, few want to linger too long. Most of the hardcore early queuers have brought along their iBooks and PowerBooks, which they are busily tapping onto. Earlier, a camping store not far from the Apple Store was surprised by the sudden run on survival gear, and most of the line is now snuggled down enjoying its new equipment - brand new sleeping bags, camping chairs and torches twinkle on the pavement.

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