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  • Archive for June, 2010

    Failure to Connect

    2010 - 06.28

    After six weeks, five technical support dudes, three sim cards and two handsets, mobile carrier 3 has finally achieved what I was beginning to consider the impossible: connecting my iPhone for wireless internet to the 3 network. Oh, yes, I now have an iPhone so my blog header is marginally more appropriate.

    Worrying statistics aside, I do not consider this situation to be entirely 3’s fault. Obviously as my mobile provider they have a duty of care to ensure that the conditions of my contract are fulfilled – even if that contract leaves 3’s own store-front employees speechlessly wondering how their company actually makes any money. But in all fairness, having me as a customer involves a swathe of inherent risks that I am sure even their most diligent product testing engineers could not anticipate.

    Having accidentally drowned my Sony Ericsson handset (and iPod, and camera, and dongle, and three USB sticks) while on a country jaunt to Chatsworth House in search of both horses and my own private Mr Darcy (fail), I rang 3 from the Carphone Warehouse to cancel my existing contract, so that I could change onto iPhone with O2. As I made the call, my ears were ringing with warnings from the Carphone dudes that 3 might try to seduce me to stay, but that they would be unable to provide a better deal for iPhone than O2. This is primarily because 3 is not an authorised iPhone dealer, and so the handset itself would be a European import (and therefore of apparently of inferior quality, seemed to be the implication – whatever).

    Obligingly, the 3 operator did indeed try to retain my custom, and I was treated to an extraordinary series of expressions ranging from suspicion through confusion to utter disbelief from the Carphone boys as I repeated the deal out loud for them to hear. For 3, in its wisdom/desperation, has given me a 16GB iPhone 3GS for free, with 1000 texts, some stupid number of minutes and unlimited internet – for £30/month. The entirety of my knowledge about phones and contracts would barely fill a thimble, but even without the silent mime show from the Carphone crew, I could tell this was a good deal. Naturally, I said yes. (more…)