White iPhone 4 timeline: What a strange, long trip it has been
The white iPhone 4 was finally launched - after months and months of delays - on April 28. Lots of people are surely rejoicing, though for very different reasons - some are glad that Apple managed to overcome this challenge, others are just happy they are now able to buy this mythical beast and stand out of the crowd, while there is that third group that's simply delighted that they won't see more rumors saying the white iPhone 4 is coming during the summer, fall, winter, spring or at some point in 2012. Regardless of which group you belong to, there can hardly be two opinions that it has been a strange, long trip for the white iPhone 4 from the assembly lines to the shelves, so we decided it's time to relive that journey for one last time.
The initial delay and some more postponements:
The original Apple plan as stated during the iPhone 4 announcement was that the handset will come in both black and white at launch. Well, that didn't happen (obviously), but it was an internal AT&T document that informed us for the first time there is going to be a delay. Subsequently, it became clear there is some kind of manufacturing issue, which was made official when Apple stepped up and told the public that the white iPhone 4 will be available in late July, 2010. This may have turned into a source of irritation for these people who were quite hungry to taste the white iPhone 4 flavour, but how little they knew back then only became clear when Apple made it official that the white version of its newest model will be released "later in 2010". Things turned from bad to worse when on October 26 yet another official information was circulated - it stated that the white iPhone 4 is coming in spring 2011.
Conversion kits and parodies
As the white iPhone 4 was growing a mythical aura around itself, certain people tried to profit from it. One such lad was a teen named Not Fei Lam who made some $130 000 selling a conversion kit turning the black iPhone 4 into a white iPhone 4. That's plainly ridiculous when you think of it, much like the so-called "Banned white iPhone 4 promo", which shows some actors posing like Apple executives - these chiefs are "explaining" why the white version of the handset has to be delayed. Worth watching, 'cause it's funny as hell. But the humour aside, it was obvious that such conversion kits will never be quite like the real thing, so the vast majority of people opted to wait patiently for Apple's white iPhone 4.
Apple's word was that the pale version of the iPhone 4 is coming in spring 2011, but the truth is that no one was particularly certain this will be the case. However, a huge pile of evidence was gathering that the handset is finally nearing release - the iCon Steve Wozniak claimed it, Phil Schiller, Apple Vice President confirmed it, while WSJ and Reuters (among others) ran stories that unequivocally stated it's coming in late April.
You know something is in motion when tech blogs from all over the world leak tons of info that proves the white iPhone 4 is to be announced on April 26 or April 27, but there is nothing like the official thing - the pale smartphone's release details were spilled on April 27 and it went on sale the next day. Fair enough, we were a wee bit disappointed that Steve Jobs didn't ride his white unicorn to announce the almost as mythical white iPhone 4, but we were comforted a bit by the fact it marked the happy end of one of the longest running sagas in the smartphone era - that (presumably) made everyone happy, though for their own reasons.