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Thursday, June 17, 2010

iPhone 4 Madness

I decided to blog about the insanity that I went through when trying to pre-order an iPhone 4 for Adam and myself. Ahhhh, the 16 hours of insanity...gotta love it.

I decided to call a couple days ahead of time to make sure that we qualified for the phone upgrade. I knew that we did, because we bought them almost 2 years ago ( on my birthday 7-11)....but I wanted to play it safe. Adam and I had our phones as individual accounts but last year we created a small business account for several of the phones at our theatre. I wanted to make sure that the change in our account wouldn't cause a problem. I was told that we qualified so...all was well, or so I thought.

Then came Tuesday the 15th. At midnight I kept checking the site to make sure that we would be one of the first to order the phones. After a little while I decided to call AT&T to see if they got an update as to when we would be able to order. I was told that we could start ordering online at 3 AM CST or over the phone at 6 AM CST. She also gave me a 1-800 number to call in case I had any problems registering online with the Premier account. Around 1 AM I decided that I should make sure my online account still worked so that the order would go smoothly. I was able to log into my account but then it kicked me over to the Premier accounts, which I assume is for businesses. I kept trying to log in with my password and even tried creating a new account. Nothing would work. For the most part it kept just "precessing". Eventually it just said that I could not register my individual number for a premier account and that I needed to contact our businesses account manager. Ummm, hello? That's me. Argggg. By this point it was around 2:15 AM. The phone number I was given would not be up and running until regular business hours...of course!

So 3 AM rolls around. I decide to try ordering the phone on the AT&T site first, hoping that I would be able to do it without the Premier thing being an issue. Again with the processing and forever being stuck on the same page. I kept hitting refresh and then left it to process on my Firefox Window. I Also tried on my Safari window in case one worked better. Nothing. Nada. Then I decided to try the Apple site. I got as far as I could on their site. As soon as I entered my phone number to check if we could upgrade it got stuck. Both Adam and I tried this until around 4:30 AM. Tired and frustrated, I decided to set my alarm for 5:45 AM CST to call in my pre-order.

5:45 AM and I'm on the phone. On hold. Finally around 6:30 AM I get to a person. She checks all of the information and is verifying everything and trying to place the order. Then she starts putting me on hold several times for 5, 10 minutes at a time. Finally around 7 AM she tells me that she isn't able to place my order for some reason. Each time she tries, it keeps kicking the order out. She then tells me that she sent a ticket in to the IT department and that I would hear something by the 18th. ( Incidentally, I still haven't heard anything and it is now the 18th) She said that she would call me personally so I left it at that.

I tried to go back to bed but couldn't fall back asleep. I decided that I would try online again, just in case. After that pointless attempt I then decided to try calling Apple to see if they would be able to place my order. Silly Vikki. So I'm on hold for literally 1 hour and 1 minute before I talk to someone for a whopping 30 seconds. As soon as I mention that I wanted to pre-order the iPhone she tells me that orders aren't going through and that the one she just tried placing is still processing. She then tells me that I should try ordering online and asks if I needed help with something else. AHHHHHH. Do you honestly think I would be waiting on hold if I could place an order online?!?! REALLY?!?!? Oh yeah, and also.....Why yes, could you tell my about some calling plans? Thought I would wait an hour to ask THAT simple question. Arggg.

SO I finally try going back to bed again around 10 AM. Around noon I begin my efforts again. I decide to call that 1-800 number to see if they can help me with the Premier registration to see if that might work. Again, I am on hold for about 45 minutes and then am transferred to the online tech department. Finally, I think I am getting somewhere. Surely the tech will be able to tell me what is wrong and can help me. Ummm, NOPE. This is the wrong phone number he tells me. He says that I need to contact customer service. WHAT?!?! I pester him a bit because this is the same customer service that was unable to place my order earlier and I know I will be on hold forever. This is also the same customer service that gave me this number to help me register my Premier account. I am not even trying to order the phone at this point, just register. He then tells me that the only thing he can do to set up a premier account is sell me another phone. Huh? Huh? That makes absolutely no sense. Like...really makes no sense. Random comment type of makes no sense. I ask him how in the world that would help me register online. I try understanding his gibberish and think well, maybe he thinks I only have 1 phone on my account and I need at least 2 to make a business account? I told him we had around 20 phones on the account if that is what he is referring to. Nope. Not what he meant. Huh? OK FINE. I am so lost. After getting a tad snippy with him, he finally says he will transfer me to customer service so that I would not have to be on hold for several hours.

So on to customer service. I will admit that at least the lady I spoke to was nice. She tried to look at the situation and saw all the documentation of my attempts and is seemingly on my side. She then notices that my account seems to be locked out for some reason and unlocks something. After a few tries we still arrive at that same wall. That wall that keeps preventing me from ordering. I get her promise that she will follow up, even if they don't make any progress, she tells me that she will call me in 1.5 hours, 6 PM. If she is on the phone she will have someone in her department call me. I hang up feeling like at least I have someone that will follow up. Alas, I still haven't heard from this person.

I decide to check Twitter again so that I can read about my friends' frustrations with ordering. I also see a few that have been able to get through. SO happy for you ( sarcasm, heavy sarcasm). Then a friend mentioned that they were able to do it through Best Buy. SO, I then call our Best Buy and am told that yes, they can place orders. I am thinking, WOW, finally! So he proceeds to check my account and then...WALL. It again shows that this individual account can't buy a phone. ACK. ACK. ACK. Very close to throwing something.

A couple minutes later I decided to call the local AT&T store to see what is going on with our account. They are the ones that set it up so I figured that they might have a bit of insight. At this point it is now around 5 PM. As soon as I mention what is going on she tells me that people with small business accounts aren't able to pre-order phones. I told her that I was able to order phones in the past for our account for various employees. She points out that yes, you can do that but not PRE-orders. Seriously?!?! I had called the store earlier that week and was told that they were getting the iPhones and that it would be first come first served so I mention that to her. I asked her if that was the only way I could get a phone, to get there early with the other crazies, and wait in line? She said, no. They are taking names and putting phones on hold for people. *crickets Excuse me? What? She repeated what she had just said. I am close to tears as I slowly begin to realize I could have saved myself 16 hours of madness by simply calling their store to see if they updated their policy. She told me she would put me at the top of the list because of all the crap I had been through and just to remind her of what color phones we wanted. She told me they should get plenty because they are the HUB in our area. Ironic seeing as they didn't even start carrying iPhones until this year.

I went into the store yesterday just to confirm that I am on the list for 2 phones. She pulled it out and sure enough, there was our name. She said I would get a phone call on Wednesday and to get there at 8 AM on Thursday. There will be a line but they will call those names out first. WAHOOOOO

So....VERY long story short....too late, hehe...We are going to get our phones, barring any other complications. Fingers crossed. Knock on wood.

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