Because of the failure of Apple's in-home activation strategy, many iPhone owners have to stop using the new phone they have waited for a long time, according to media reports Monday.
Existing AT&T customers transferring their cell phone numbers were affected, as were people porting their numbers from competitors such as Verizon and T-Mobile. In many cases, users found that their old number had been deactivated, leaving them without a cell phone as they waited for iPhone activation to kick in.
Unfortunately, prior to activation, new customers are unable to use any iPhone functions -- including the iPod -- until the process is complete as the iPhone continues to display the "Activate iPhone... Connect to iTunes" message.
AT&T Inc. the Apple Inc. device's exclusive carrier, said that the situation had been improved after they received complains from customers. "We are working on any issues on an individual basis with customers who were impacted," said Michael Coe, a spokesman for AT&T.
AT&T attributed the problems to overloaded servers as large number of customers tried to activate their phones over the weekend. After being hit with the initial onslaught, AT&T made technical adjustments to its activation system so that new users wouldn't face the same delays, Coe said.
Angry users, however, were not ready to quickly forget, or forgive, AT&T-- or by association, Apple -- for the problems. "A completely avoidable, yet completely predictable failure on the part of both the AT&T/Cingular and Apple IT staff, as well as the iPhone product team," lamented user Roland Dobbins on the Apple support forum in a long message listing several reasons for the mess.