The scene at Apple's Regent Street store on iPad launch day

iPad-emonium is the only word to describe the scene down at Regent Street on the day the device finally arrived in the UK. Well, okay, technically the iPad arrived yesterday when thousands of people who pre-ordered received theirs.

Oh, and there were the impatient few thousand who ordered theirs from the States because they just couldn't wait. But you try telling the hundreds of people who queued outside the Apple Store all night that this wasn't the real launch.    

Around 500 people decided to queue in order to grab themselves the latest must-have device, with the line extending from the Apple Store entrance on Regent Street and around the corner onto Hanover Street, right down to Hanover Square.

The atmosphere was electric, mainly thanks to fact that the expected downpours never arrived, but also because of the amount of stuff that was going on. Apple really knows how to hype the heck out of an event without actually doing anything extra special itself - other than opening the shop 1-hour early.   

The Guinness World Records team were there, promoting the company's iPad app. And they brought with them the world's tallest married couple, who were amongst the first few people that actually got into the store at 8am. There was also a Guinness world record for a lucky queue member on Hanover Street, who broke the world record for typing the alphabet in the fastest time on an iPad.

Everyone's favourite gadget fan Stephen Fry was also on the scene, despite already having an iPad shipped in from across the pond. He was talking about his FryPad app: "It sucks all of the content from my website, like the blogs", he said. "It formats them for the iPad in a very nice interface".

First in the queue was 17-year-old Jake Lee from Essex, who had queued with two of his pals since 12pm the day before. He was offered £700 for his place in the queue by a canny hack who spotted a good opportunity for a bit of cheap PR (it wasn't us, incidentally).

Something tells us that Jake wouldn't have sold his place for even double that amount; iPad fever had taken hold and it wasn't letting up. Maybe it was all that free coffee Starbucks was giving out.

Enjoy our pictures from the tech launch of the year.....

Were you there? Or, if you queued outside a different store in the country (or Europe), were there any wacky events that you saw? If so, let us know your experiences of the day.



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