How much do you want a new iPhone? How long would you be prepared to live on the streets to be first in the queue on launch day? For some people, the urge, nay need, to get the latest and greatest is so much that they are willing to skip work, sleep rough, or as many see it "be part of the circus".
Yes, the Apple iPhone 6 launch is upon us once again, and that means the usual array of Apple's faithful are keen to show their love for the company's new smartphones in ways many would question.
Take Zoltan, for example. First in the queue at the Apple Regent Street store in London, he has been queuing with his girlfriend for the last two weeks just to ensure he is one of the first in England to get one.
Not that he actually wants one. He recently sold his place to someone with enough cash to buy a couple of iPhones and still have change.
It seems even being first can be bought these days, and Zoltan, who was half asleep when we spoke to him, has settled for £1,500 and a new iPad for his place.
Before you feel sorry for him, don't. His girlfriend, Flora, who is second in the queue and been sharing his makeshift home, plans to get the iPhone 6 Plus with the money he earned.
It's all new to Zoltan, a 24-year-old fitness instructor. This is his first Apple queue, which can't be said for the people waiting behind him.
Most of the people we talked to, whether it is the bunch of friends, theoretically second in the queue, or those farther back in the line, all seem to be habitual queuers.
"I've been doing it for some time," Billy, who owns his own swimming school, tells Pocket-lint. This is his fourth time.
He and his friends could easily be described as professional queuers.
Billy could be described as a professional queuer
Having queued at the Regent Street Apple store before, they've come prepared and armed with the facts. There are six of them in total: some for the long haul, some bunking work, all prepared to queue in order to get their hands on the new iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus.
Sitting in a tent that looks more akin to something you'd see telephone exchange workers on the street working from, there is a desk for their laptops, as well as a place to sit, and advertising on the outside.
The mood is fun and friendly, but there is an air of knowing about them. They've done this before. They are hardened pros.
Having had a run in with Westminster Council in previous years, this year's rain-proof hut has been researched. It's just the right width and size to sit on Apple's part of the pavement, and therefore private property, without encroaching on Westminster's public pavement. The amount of kit they have - from sleeping bags, to chairs, to booze - shows they've all been here and done it before too.
And queued they have, but not only for Apple products.
It is a trend we hear about along the entire queue, with some already planning to join another queue immediately after they buy their iPhones on Friday. Nike's queue is just across the road.
"It is good to get it [the iPhone] on launch day, but it's more about the social aspects," Billy tells us.
It's a sentiment that his friends, most of whom have dashed to Pret for some much-needed food and a wee break, up are keen to stress. It's as if the idea of an adventure holiday isn't adventurous enough.
As we walk along the queue, the usual news jackers are to be seen: people keen to pitch their company or sell their space with some holding placards in the same way homeless people ask for change.
Faisal just couldn't wait for online delivery
Meanwhile toward the back of the queue, Faisal, who runs his own property company, concretes the comments of those at the front of the queue.
"If you've got the time, why not?" Faisal tells Pocket-lint, clearly enjoying the sun on the warm September afternoon.
This is Faisal's third time queuing for Apple products, and he has not only come prepared with his own camping chair, but is already making friends.
In the excitement it is hard to tell whether he is friends with those he is sitting next to, whether they all work for him, or whether they have just bonded over the experience. The banter is just too much fun.
Around fifteenth in the queue (not including plus ones), he's been queuing for a couple of days, seemingly here for the social experience as well as the need to get the new iPhone.
Not happy about having to wait 3 to 4 weeks for delivery when ordering from the internet, he's come down to guarantee he gets a new phone on day one.
Some it seems are just there to sell their place
He's not alone. Most of those we talk to are actually buying the phone for themselves, but again those he is queuing with sound like habitual queuers, and the shoe queuing references come up again. People, it seems, really like queuing for shoes.
Consumerism has become so powerful - or supply and demand so potent - that the have-nots really must have.
It is an idea not appreciated by everyone, especially the passers by.
Talking to customers walking out of the Apple store, many of whom had just bought everything from a new iPad to even the iPhone 5S, couldn't see the point, especially now that you can order online. Laura, an account executive at a local media firm, told us that although she wanted an iPhone 6 she was more than happy to wait for 3 to 4 weeks before it came back in stock rather than sleep overnight on the London streets.
With just over 18 hours to go before the retail euphoria can be enjoyed by these faithful few, we also talked to the last person in the queue.
It turns out it was two Chinese girls who weren't even in the queue for themselves, but holding a place for a friend who couldn't join them until after work. That's friendship for you.
The two seemed bemused as to what the fuss was about, but happy to enjoy the moment, and the sheer fact someone (that's us) was asking them about being in the iPhone 6 queue.
And that's when it struck us: the queuers - for all their quirks, for all their wants of new technology - aren't queuing just because of a new iPhone, but because of the excitement of queuing and the friendships they make.
It's clear from those we talked to that spirits are high (it's been sunny this week), not because Apple has made queuing the only way of getting the new phones, but because queuing in an Apple queue is good fun.
Looking down the queue before we left showed us more than a bunch of people lining-up for of a piece of technology, but rather a bunch of people hanging out with friends, playing cards, sitting on blow-up beds and armchairs, and generally having fun.
From a distance that is sometimes hard to see or understand, but for those who are there, still queuing as you read this, the annual Apple queue has become their holiday, their break from the norm, and their moment in the sun.
For many in the queue, come launch day, when it is all over and done with, we suspect most will be looking for the next hit of euphoria and the next queue to join. The Nike queue is just across the street, after all.
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