APPLE enthusiasts eager to get their hands on the new iPhone gathered outside the O2 store in Horsham from 2am this morning (Friday 14 October).
More than 40 people from across the district were queuing in West Street at 9am, some even equipped with camping chairs and tents.
Matt Froud, 17, from Ashington, had been outside the store since 4am with his mum and brother.
He said: “We got up at around 3.30am, packed two camping chairs and make out way down here. We’ve always used Apple - it’s just revolutionised the phone.
His mum, Karoline Froud, 51, added: “We’re a family of iPhone users. I’ve had one since the very beginning. It’s everything you could ever want in a phone, it’s just got all the features.
Another fan, Gary Newley, of Watercress Place, Horsham, said: “I just want the new one, I’ve been queuing for so long because I’m mad.”
Staff at the store estimate they will serve over 100 iPhone customers today.
Dave Bardsley, Horsham O2 store manager, said: “It’s the most people I’ve ever seen in Horsham high street.
“The first person here was at 2am, followed by others at 4am. They had chairs and tents and umbrellas.
“We will do just over 100 iPhone customers today, it’s about 20 times more than normal.
“I’ve done releases in Brighton and Bournemouth before. Brighton’s a lot busier - but iPhone users are always very very eager.
He added: “It’s made by Apple, that’s why everyone loves it. I like the iPhone but I don’t think I would take it quite so far.”
The iPhone 4S boasts an improved camera, extended battery life and the latest i0S5 operating software, which promises 200 new features. It looks and feels like the previous iPhone 4 model which was launched 15 months ago.
The iPhone 4S is available in 16GB, 32GB and 64GB models - in both black and white.
One of the first customers in Horsham to get the new device, Ashley Wakeford, of Pulborough, said: “I rung up last night to check out what time the store would be open and I was told there will be queuing.
“We got here just before 7am, we we’re 16th in the queue. The atmosphere was great though, everyone was really chatty.
“Now I have it in my hands it feels fantastic, amazing!”
Vikki Cooper, also from Pulborough, added: “I don’t mind queuing, it’s all part of the process and good fun. It’s definitely worth the wait, even if you are shivering!”