LIHUE — The release of the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus was greeted with much anticipation and high expectations in Lihue on Friday.
“We’re trying to get an upgrade in our family, so I’ve been waiting,” said Jackie Pudlo, who came from Kalaheo to wait for the Lihue AT&T store to open. “Usually somebody breaks their phone, cracks a screen or something like that. Mom is always the last one on the list, but today I’m getting one.”
The new generation iPhone features a full glass back to enable fast wireless charging with a water-resistant aerospace aluminum frame available in three colors. AT&T in Lihue is selling the iPhone 8 for $699.99 and the iPhone 8 Plus for $799.99.
“We’re here, and we’re super excited,” said Debra Marshall, retail sales manager for AT&T Mobility. “We have phones, and they have tons of new capabilities.”
About a dozen people waited patiently at the Lihue store on Friday morning to be some of the first on island to buy the new model, which features stereo speakers that are 25 percent louder and capable of deeper bass.
“The price tag is very high, but it is what it is. We all have to have our cell phones,” said Nancy Schaefer, who drove from Anahola to purchase the phone. “My husband bought a new one last year, and he’s always showing off his 7 Plus. So now I get to show off the 8.”
According to Marshall, the new phone’s Retina HD display automatically adapts the color palette to lighting conditions for improved viewing. Its graphics processing unit features Apple’s A11 Bionic chip for up to 70 percent faster load times of graphics.
“I think it’s comparable to other iPhones,” Pudlo said, “but the camera is also supposed to be upgraded.”
The phone’s camera features a larger light sensor for clearer photos and video. Each camera is individually calibrated with gyroscopes and accelerometers for accurate motion tracking.
“I was just due for a phone. We’re kind of attached to them now.” Pudlo said. “The next one is going to be a little bit more pricey.”
Some customers were considering holding out for Apple’s next upgrade, the iPhone X, which will be released on Nov. 3.