TODAY   |  September 21, 2013

New iPhone draws mixed reviews, long lines

Apple’s newest iPhone is now on sale, and as usual, the lines have been long with thousands of Apple loyalists vying to be among the first with the latest. But what exactly are they getting? NBC’s Mike Taibbi reports.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> the newest version of the iphone is a hot item and happens every time they release one, right some some stores sell out and backlogon the apple's website until october? but for thousands of people across the country, the only weight they had was this one and seems to become standard now every time a new model is relieved but what exactly are they getting this time around with that new phone? here is mike taibbi .

>> reporter: a touch of same old, same old to these scenes. lines snaking around the block until people open to cheers when the apple doors open up. chicago's mason levy explaining why.

>> awesome. always a good feeling to get a new phone.

>> reporter: okay, it's a good feeling and the new phone does have some cool stuff. a fingerprint i.d. scanner. a better camera. a faster and more versatile operating system. it's encased in plastic and with snappy colors. evolution say some tech writers but not revolutionary.

>> for hard-core techies might be impressed with this stuff but average customer go with the iphone that is most prettiest. maybe the gold or the pink.

>> reporter: orders for the gold iphone overwhelmed the first day supply but despite the opening day enthusiasm, it's a tough market out there, tomorrow is guaranteed to no brand, no matter how iconic. it was just a few years ago that this was the got to have device and where is blackberry now? apparently to lay off 40% of its work force by year's end. apple has been losing market share . second quarter iphone sales of 27 million units were dwarfed by samsung 71 million smartphones sold. critics say some of the 5s advances like its faster chip to run complex games, will have limited use right now.

>> the 64 bit chip is impressive and that should do wonders as far as gaming goes. but right now, there is only one game that is taking advantage of that.

>> reporter: still every new iphone rollout remains an event, one celebrated by ceo tim cook visiting fans in palo alto .

>> fantastic.

>> reporter: by the millions shelling out hundreds a dlars apiece for a device worth singing about. i jam my iphone

>> reporter: where is that mute button when you need it? for "today," mike taibbi , nbc news, los angeles .