My new project: Tact, a simple chat app.

Getting my iPhone up and running with good service

August 17, 2007

It’s so popular to bash big companies. Apple, Cingular, all those evil monopolists who make people’s lives miserable and treat customers badly. And the underdogs will come and save the world from bad incumbents.

There’s some merit in that thinking. I, for one, am not a big fan of the iPhone exclusive deal either. But when things are as they are, you sometimes just have to play within the bounds of the system. And I got some great service regarding my iPhone that lets me now use it fine.

So I got my iPhone. The thing you have to do after buying it is go home and activate it. But this requires you to have a U.S. social security number and a credit history so that they can do an online credit check on you. I obviously had neither and thought for a minute… hey wait now, did I just waste all this money on a brick useless to me?

Turns out there’s another way. You can just walk in to an AT&T store (I don’t understand what’s their current brandname though. Why does iPhone autocorrect keep uppercasing it?) and you can pay them a security deposit. You won’t need the SSN either. I was helped by a very nice lady who made me a number and knew about the activation process. “When it asks you for the last four digits to transfer your number, just enter this.” At least here’s a sales rep who not only is nice, but knows their own and partner products.

The iPhone itself is great. In fact, I’m typing this post on it, as the Comcast people aren’t coming in to set up my Internet tubes until in ten days. Naturally the iPhone has some flaws too, it’s far from saving the world. I’ll do a more in-depth review at another time.