Apple's Munich opening is mobbed -- in fullscreen panoramaDecember 6, 2008: 11:59 AM ET
A high-res panoramic camera captured the mob scene Saturday morning when Apple (AAPL) opened its flagship Munich retail outlet -- the first Apple Store in Germany. A huge crowd showed up, and it's all there in QTVR -- QuickTime virtual reality.
To experience the thing, created by photographer Willy Kaemena (visible at the center of the panorama), click on the image above -- or go to this webpage -- and then drag your mouse around to get a feel of what it was like to be there. (The sound loop of the crowd could drives you nuts; there's a speaker button on the bottom of the screen that will shut it off.)
The store, at 1 Rosenstrasse, is the first of five retail shops that Apple plans to open in Germany, according to AppleInsider. Click here to see photos of the site -- once the home of a Sport Schuster outlet -- after Apple razed the existing building to construct one of their classic glass-enclosed retail spaces.
According to the store's official website, Apple employees were going to hand out T-shirts to the first 2,500 people who showed up. Judging from the panorama, they didn't bring enough.
For video of Apple's Munich staff whipping up the usual frenzy with whooping, stomping, hollering and high-fives, see the YouTube clip below the fold posted by readers Bob, Ted, Sam and Alice.
UPDATE: To help clear up the debate below about the extent to which normal tourist and Christmas shopping traffic made the Apple crowd seem bigger than it really was, click here to see to an earlier Kaemena panorama, shot 30 minutes before the grand opening.