iGot A Useless Phone, So Far

Okay, so I took off from work at 4:30 yesterday to go stand in line at the AT&T store to get an iPhone. That wasn’t bad. Got out of there at 6:45, hoping to post a shot of the AdPulp home page as it appears on my iPhone. You know, just to complete the cycle of geekdom I reside in.
But instead, I get home and I find out the activation could take up to 24 hours because I’m switching from Verizon using my old cell number. So I wait…15 hours and counting.
I’m just bitching. But I guess if there’s a product that’s the result of a partnership between 2 brands, nothing kills my love for one (Apple) like my experience with the other (AT&T).
The only thing I can do with my iPhone is turn it on and use the “slider” on the screen to get the emergency call window. But that’s fun. Sort of.
[UPDATE] So on Saturday night, after waiting 26 hours for AT&T to try and port my old cell number from Verizon and activate my phone, I decided to start over with a new cell phone number. And then my phone activated immediately. That’s the way it should be.

About Dan Goldgeier

Blogging on AdPulp since 2005, Dan Goldgeier is a Seattle-based freelance copywriter with experience at advertising agencies across the U.S. He is a graduate of the Creative Circus ad school, and currently teaches at Seattle's School of Visual Concepts. In addition, he is a regular columnist for TalentZoo.com. Dan published the best of his TalentZoo.com columns in a book entitled View From The Cheap Seats: A Broader Look at Advertising, Marketing, Branding, Global Politics, Office Politics, Sexual Politics, and Getting Drunk During a Job Interview. Look for it on Amazon in paperback and e-book editions.


  1. Well, that’s the hustle of the telecom industry.
    It’s too bad that consumers are forced to choose providers tied to the phone models they want. Although it’s likely that AT&T only has limited exclusivity. So another provider or two will be offering iPhones within the next six months. You should have waited (although you early adopter types have rarely been able to show patience), because AT&T is definitely among the worst providers, despite their advertising to the contrary. In terms of service (and customer service), Verizon and T-Mobile set the standards. At some point, providers will have to let consumers not only port their numbers, but also their phones.

  2. I’m just not a big fan of cell phones. I have one, but I try to use it as little as possible. Am I in the minority? Are you watching video on your cell phone?
    (quoted text)

  3. You’re right HJ, but the thing is the whole take-the-phone-home-and-activate-it-yourself-online is a great idea. In theory. If it had worked for me right away, instead of this system-wide bottleneck that’s happened this weekend, I’d have praised AT&T endlessly.

  4. stephen says:

    unfortunately, AT&T has the exclusive rights to the iPhone for 5 years!!!

  5. Walked into my local Apple store at 10:30 and walked out at 10:35, iPhone in tow. Once I got home, I was up and running in less than 5 minutes with my activation replacing a device on my current plan (another issue that was giving them problems last night).
    I haven’t had any issues with Cingular/AT&T service in my area since they added and upgraded towers this past December.
    I’ve had two different bad experiences with Verizon and I’ll never go back.
    I’ve had the best provider service with Sprint, but their customer service drove me away.

  6. So after 26 hours of waiting for my old number to get activated, I said fuck it, cancelled my old activation and started with a brand new number.
    And I was activated IMMEDIATELY.

  7. Sounds like the backlog on porting numbers is from the source and not at AT&T (as gathered from various sources on the web).
    Now just call AT&T on Monday and you still may be able to get your old number ported in.

  8. Jeez, shawn appears to be working for Apple and/or AT&T.
    If it’s true that AT&T has a 5-year exclusivity deal, it’s quite a boon for them—but a tragedy for consumers who would like to pair an innovative phone with a superior service provider.
    Yes, danny g can port his old number again, but he does risk the same wait that drove him insane over the weekend. Additionally, it will absolutely screw up his initial billing. In fact, it’s likely that he’s already screwed up the bill by switching to a new number while the old one was still allegedly porting.
    Enjoy your new iPhone, danny. And welcome to the third-rate service world of AT&T.
    nancy, you are not necessarily in the minority regarding your cell phone usage—although you’re probably in the minority on every other issue you’ve written about. Just kidding. Sort of. But seriously, there is a large group of consumers who use cell phones in minimal ways. The group is actually profitable in that you tend to pay your bills regularly and provide a steady stream of revenue for providers. But providers don’t typically target your group with messaging, as they prefer to push the data services that you’ll probably never try. Yet until the providers make the technology easier to use and more affordable—plus improve the quality and reliability—there’s not a great incentive for mass consumers to use it. It’s interesting to note that iPhones have not hyped the mp3 capabilities, perhaps fearing biting into Apple’s iPod sales.

  9. Well, HJ, I’m hoping for the best. I was on BellSouth mobility years back. Plus, I’m in Atlanta, where Cingular/AT&T is the home team. Their HQ is 2 minutes away from my agency. If there’s problems in these parts, they’ll hear about it for sure.

  10. ahhh, high jive, my post… that was a quote from danny g from 2006, march 20 something, on this bolg. I guess the iPhone is changing everythng huh? He changed his mind or certainly he’s not paid to do PR, is he? . But he sure was impatient last nite. Kinda reminded me of when Steve told the story about woz playing stop and go with star trek and a tv remote.
    As for my cellphone usage? I don’t use it because i am paranoid into thinking that it has been hijacked either by the government or some other evil empire. My kids aren’t big talkers on the phone, so that’s kinda minimal usage there. And friends…yea, my dog died.
    I will tell you this> I walk around on the streets where the majority of the people are under 25. The cell phone is there way of life. These young people will make it work, believe. Okay, so it’s foreign to me, but somethings you just don’t want to fight youth. You just let them run with it. Besides watching sleek bodies is getting to be a past time of mine.. ohh… I mean… stealth minds. Yea, stealth minds work.
    As for cellphone providers? They all suck at times, and areg reat at times. I was surprised when I drove around 75% of the country last year at the different coverage. Feel real freedom when you get to a space where there’s no analog roaming..
    As for the iPhone… I think it’s more important that it puts the internet in your pocket. And you can do it outside while you soak up the sun.
    Side industries>>how do these things perform in the sun. UV filter necesary or not?
    The iPod and video portion will be popular for travelers, I think. But for everyday use…it’s a phone and it’s the internet. And that’s big, big, big.

  11. Digging up old evidence to use against me? Well, it’s true…I never was a big cell phone guy. I never had one I really liked.
    But I’m addicted to the ‘Net. Now I have a cell phone that lets me surf the web wherever I am and also has a Google map feature that helps me find stuff when I’m lost or don’t know what’s around the neighborhood I’m driving through. Plus, it syncs perfectly with the Mac I use at home. The iPhone is perfect for me. Maybe not for everyone though.

  12. danny g,
    actually i was’t digging up evidence about you. I was looking for an something about dove real beauty. I found it on March 27 of my computer. However, when i came to adpulp looking on march 27, I found that, and i just found it funny.
    Don’t worry, I’m not concerned about people changing their mind. Isn’t that why companies advertise? And~ I eat my words on a constant and rapid schedule. Then again, I am lexic-anorexic and bibliobulemic, too.
    Here’s a question i have about the net… can you get the internet from the phone to display on a laptop or desktop from the phone connection…. so that IP providers become useless? and I save $40/month that way?

  13. Oops. Sorry, nancy. Didn’t understand your first post.
    But it does go to show the racing speed of technology and its ability to change perceptions and behavior.
    Not convinced the iPhone offers a lot of different things other phones don’t already provide, particularly Web access. Plus, look for another phone maker to create an iPhone competitor pronto, particularly if iPhone is indeed exclusive to AT&T for five years—just like other introduced ultra-thin phones after the popular debut of the RAZR a few years ago.

  14. I don’t know if I will eventually end up with an iPhone or not.
    As for me, I remember four years ago falling in love with my Apple screen and it really was all about vision. Apple does vision like no one else for the price. And for now that’s my loyalty.
    I’m amazed at the clarity on the new iPods. I don’t even need bifocals to read that thing. Nor do I have to take off my myopic corrective lenses to read, like I do a book or newspaper. The contrast is excellent and the fine precision fonts.
    So I can put off buying a new set of glasses for another two years? Cuz yes, the majority of my reading is done on the internet. Saves me at least 500 bucks and I win a verbal bet with my eyedoctor, too.
    But I know that’s not at all a feature that other phone users are looking for.
    See, it’s not how it looks, it’ how I look at IT.

  15. Yea, I know Dell makes just as good as a screen as Apple. and their are other less costly manufacturers. It’s just that they Apple is a forerunner with their intent on visual solutions for my taste.

  16. @highjive
    Apple fan: guilty as charged.
    As for AT&T, last fall I was counting the days until my contract was up. 2 years of crappy coverage. Then they finished their tower upgrades (which included the addition of 9 towers) in December and I haven’t had an issue with coverage since then. So, not a fan, but as long as my service is working as it should, I’m happy.