The vigil was finally over for Apple fans today as the iPhone 5 went on sale around the world today.
Dedicated: A queue of hundreds had formed outside the Apple store in London's Covent Garden by the early hours of Friday ahead of the iPhone 5 launch
Many in the queue for an iPhone in Covent Garden had been there for several days ahead of the launch
From London to New York to Sydney, fans have camped outside Apple stores.
As Apple opened the doors of its stores around the world, staff greeted the first customers with high fives and cheers.
The dozens of die-hard Apple fans had swollen into huge queues of hundreds by the early hours of Friday morning, as excitement reached fever pitch hours before the release of the updated handset
|Some of the 800 people who queued to get their hands on the new Apple Iphone 5 at the company's Glasgow city centre store. Extra security and hot coffee was given out to keep the huge crowd happy with many queuing overnight.|
We've got one! Two Apple fans in Sydney, Australia hold aloft their treasured iPhones after becoming the first in the world to own the must-have gadget
The latest Apple gadget became available from 8am, as hundreds were cheered into the brand's store in Covent Garden, central London.
Apple store workers dressed in blue T-shirts formed a passageway and high-fived customers who had been waiting outside the shop for up to a week.
The phone is already guaranteed to be a best-seller, with the company reporting pre-orders around the world of two million in just 24 hours and many customers not expected to receive theirs until October.
IT businessman Ryan Williams was the first person in the queue and said the atmosphere as he picked up the phone was 'crazy'.
Williams, 22, from Swanley in Kent, had been camping out in Covent Garden for a week with his friend Peter King.
Apple employees form an arch for customers to run through as they enter the company's store in Covent Garden to purchase an iPhone 5.
Mobile firm O2 opened a special popup on top of the O2 in East London to sell the handset
|A Japanese fan dressed for the occasion at the firm's Tokyo Apple Store|
He said: 'I didn't expect that kind of entrance to be honest with you, I thought I was just queueing for a phone but it was absolutely mad.
'It was a crazy thing to queue here for a week but it was really good fun, I would definitely do it again, we've raised so much money for Cancer Research UK as well which is absolutely fantastic.
'I was just trying to utilise the fact that there's so much publicity around iPhone queuing, so if we could build on that and raise money for charity at the same time, we were doing it for a good cause.'
Although the majority were there to get their hands on their own new iPhone, the anticipation surrounding its release has reached such levels that many were prepared to sell their place in the queue for four-figure sums.
Hordes of excited shoppers also gathered outside Newcastle's Apple store today.
The 500-strong queue, which snaked through Eldon Square shopping centre in Newcastle Upon Tyne.
Mark Challiner, 42, braved the freezing rain to arrive at the store at 4am to stake his place in the queue as the doors opened at 8am.
Mark, of Stoke on Trent, who works as an accountant in Staffordshire, said: 'We've been here since around 4am and I'm very tired now.
'The people from the store have been handing out snacks and bottled water to keep us going.
Ralf Marth from Munich celebrates being the first customer at an Apple store in Munich to buy the iPhone 5
A customer is greeted by Apple employees as she enters the Hong Kong Apple store
Staff at the Apple store in Hong Kong applaud customers as they climb a glass staircase to purchase an iPhone 5
Kae Shibata 20, left, and Yutaro Noji, 21, show off Apple's iPhone 5 after they bought at a store in Tokyo
SHARP GUYS: Some fans immediately sold their purchase, hoping to make a profit from their time in the queue. Here, a man (C) resells an iPhone 5 he just bought outside the Hong Kong Apple store.
The 16GB version, the lowest-priced version of the iPhone 5 available would cost a buyer about £529, (about N108,538)