First iPhone 3G sold in New Zealand

It took waiting 55 hours in sometimes freezing temperatures, but when the doors of the Vodafone story opened, Jonny Gladwell was ready.

Correction, 6:39 PM PDT: This story cited the wrong city as New Zealand's capital. The capital city is Wellington.

The world's first iPhone 3G buyer is a student in New Zealand.

That's the word from our colleagues at CNET Australia, which is reporting that Jonny Gladwell's mission to acquire Apple's updated iPhone was not to be deterred by frigid temperatures or a somewhat more temperate drizzle. Gladwell held his place in line in the city of Auckland for 55 hours, motivated by the urgings of friends who said they would cover the cost of the gadget--and who supplied an exercise bike and a masseuse.

"I have been standing on the street, playing with my laptop and using the phone to order things," Gladwell said. "I got 45 minutes of sleep on the first night and six hours on the second night."

Gladwell gets the honors of being the first in the world because of New Zealand's proximity to the International Date Line--the Friday launch day for the iPhone 3G is already under way in that part of the Pacific. He had to bundle up against the cold because in the Southern Hemisphere, it's wintertime.

In nearby Australia, meanwhile, that country's first purchaser (click for story and video) of the iPhone 3G was a gent named Brett Powell. He had to stand in line only about a half-day before getting his phone, though the temperatures were apparently every bit as bracing.

In the U.S., meanwhile, the temperatures may be more pleasant, but it's still Thursday afternoon for the folks waiting in line for Friday's expected 8 a.m. opening times.

Gladwell got the iPhone 3G at a Vodafone store, which opened just after midnight local time. Some 300 people were in line, though the head of Vodafone NZ reckoned that only about 160 of them were there to actually buy a phone.

Brett Powell
He wasn't the first in the world to get an iPhone 3G, but Brett Powell was close--he was the first in Australia. Sergio Dionisio/Getty Images

Click here for CNET News' complete iPhone 3G coverage.