The following is pretty much an unedited copy of a comment I made on GeeCee's blog post about the SWTOR launch, also of merit is Scarybooster's comparison of the SWTOR launch vs. WoW's launch seven years ago.
I got in "before lunch" on the second day, having preordered in September, the day they announced the 20 December release. Being at work, and unable to take the day off, it didn't matter to me what time of day I got the email.
People seem to forget that their preorder purchase--a whole 5 bucks for basic and DD editions--"guaranteed" only that they would have a copy of the game on the day of release. Any early access, whether one day or seven, is free gravy. The EARLIER access was a reward for preordering EARLIER. Those who ordered later, like me, got what they deserved and have "no standing," to borrow legal jargon.
As for queues, I encountered minor ones early yesterday morning before work, but was pleasantly surprised to waltz onto Sanctum of the Exalted during primetime. I have a friend on Mask of Nihilus (sp?) with 25-30 minute queues, nothing a few minutes doing dishes or reading a story to your kids can't cover.
Here's a nickel's worth of free advice: When your chosen server is full and the queue is intolerable, role a minor alt on an open server. Sure, you want to play with friends and guildmates. But having a back-up plan and having fun at it is way better than getting your blood pressure up and nerdraging on the SWTOR forums. Besides, you never know when your server might crash in the future and you'll be ready with a little side character.