I picked my iPhone on launch day in the UK (November 9th) and after making a few calls several friends complained of a “creaking” sound coming down the phone.
I eventually narrowed the sound down to the plastic housing for the speaker and microphone, applying gently pressure to the sides of the housing when holding the phone caused the plastic to flex and creak. As the microphone is housed in this area the small sound was greatly amplified down the line to my friends.
I took a trip back to the Carphone Warehouse the next morning, explained and demonstrated the problem and they instantly agreed it was a fault and would issue a replacement. The problem was none of the sales staff were able to talk me through the exchange procedure for the iPhone as I was the first to return a faulty iPhone. They seemed to be under the impression when I connected the replacement iPhone to iTunes I would have to start a new 18 months contract and ask for a refund and termination of the previous contract. This seemed ludicrous to me so after an hour wait in store whilst they called somebody for advice they finally gave me a new iPhone but removed the SIM from my old faulty phone and installed it in the new one.
That was it as far as they were concerned, it should just work! WTF of course it won’t, I powered it on in front of them to prove my point, and sure enough the phone was in Emergency Call only mode until I connected to iTunes.
Somebody then reassured me that iTunes would recognise the phone as a replacement and I’d simply have to enter my old number to migrate my account to the newer handset. This brought up a new problem, since I was migrating from Vodafone to O2 and was porting my number, I had been issued with a temporary O2 phone number for 7 days. Did I enter this temporary O2 number or my number being ported across if iTunes asked?….blank faces from all the staff again!
I left the store and decided to just try it and see what happened, and for the benefit of anybody else wandering how the replacement iPhone process differs from the new sign up procedure I took screen shots at each stage:
Step 1: First Screen shown when replacement iPhone connected.
19 days after it was initially launched, it still appears Apple have restricted the White iPhone 3G to Apple stores and “brand new customers only”.
There are only 3 official sources for the iPhone 3G in the UK:
1 – Apple
2 – Carphone Warehouse (CPW)
3 – O2
If you are an existing iPhone owner and wish to upgrade you cannot go to an Apple store! All upgrades for current iPhone users have to be done through Carphone Warehouse or O2.
The problem is, Apple have so far not given any stock of the White iPhone 3G to either O2 or CPW. This effectively means that existing iPhone users cannot upgrade to the White iPhone 3G and must, for now at least, settle for the black version.
I’ve made near daily visits and several phone calls to both O2 and Carphone Warehouse trying to confirm a date that they’ll be receiving stock of the White iPhone 3G so that I can upgrade and some of the responses I’ve been getting are shocking:
“oh no sir, there’s no white iPhone only black, you must be confusing it with the iPods?”
“the White iPhone is going to be exclusive to the Carphone Warehouse, O2 won’t have any”
“the White iPhone is going to be for Pay As You Go customers only”
“The White iPhone will launch between October and December along with the PAYG version”
For Pay As You Go customers only!! Don’t talk rubbish, why would a PAYG customer (who’s going to be paying well over the odds for the phone in the first place) be restricted to getting the White one, which is 16GB only? Christmas time? Really? The Apple store has plenty of them in right now.
Obviously not content with the iPhone sales figures in the UK, O2 have announced they are changing all three iPhone tariffs to the benefit of the end user.
Those on the lowest £35 tariff get triple minutes and double SMS!
Those on the £45 tariff now get the same as the old £55 tariff, basically double mins, same SMS.
Those on the £55 tariff get dropped down to the new £45 tariff, so basically you’re saving £10 a month but you do have the option if you wish to jump up to the new £75 tariff if you really feel you need 3000 minutes!
For them to make such drastic tariff changes less than 3 months after it’s UK launch is a bold move, but definitely in the right direction. I know of 4 people who have all bought an iPhone after I’ve shown them all the features on my own device, but there are so many of my friends who would all love to get an iPhone, the cost of the handset itself doesn’t bother them, it’s the over-priced tariffs that have stopped them from taking the plunge. For the early adopters it’s a welcome break as many can now drop down a tariff and save some £££ over the course of the 18 month contract, I still wish they’d add an unlimited SMS option to the tariffs though.
The new tariffs come into effect as of today but depending on when you’re billing cycle is you may not notice the changes on your bill until mid March at the absolutle latest.
All current O2 iPhone customers should have by now received an SMS from O2 detailing the changes with a link to tell you more about it. The link varies depending on which tariff you were on, £35 link, £45 link and £55 link and includes instructions on how to easily change to a different tariff or you can simply click here and follow instructions to change tariffs.