Does anyone understand how we are supposed to buy an iPhone?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by TenaciousPZ, Jun 13, 2007.

  1. TenaciousPZ macrumors regular

    Jan 17, 2007
    ...because I sure as hell DO NOT.

    How the hell is the phone going to be sold in both apple retail stores and at&t stores?

    Last time I checked, Apple doesn't have its own phone service that it will be offering. How, in all of creation, could you be expected to go to the Apple store and buy a phone, without signing an At&t contract, and walk out the door WITH an iPhone, that cannot make phone calls...? WHAT?!

    Somebody please shed some light on this subject as I don't believe anyone really understands anything so far.

    Please DO NOT cite the notion that the iPhone will be $999 in Apple retail stores because that is the most absurd rumor to surface thus far.
  2. earnjam macrumors 6502a


    Jun 7, 2007
    North Carolina
  3. Eric1285 macrumors 6502

    Feb 22, 2007
    Um, I think it'd be pretty simple for Apple to be able to sign up new customers for AT&T in their stores. After all, the tiny kiosks in the mall can do it, why should the Apple store be able to? They have a 5 year exclusive deal with Apple, so it may not be too much to ask for them to set up their own kiosks in the store for the iPhone. It is after all, kind of a big deal.
  4. gr8tfly macrumors 603


    Oct 29, 2006
    ~119W 34N
    They've been setup with access to AT&T's system.
  5. Jaffa Cake macrumors Core

    Jaffa Cake

    Aug 1, 2004
    The City of Culture, Englandshire
    Perhaps you'll be able to buy an AT&T contract at the Apple Store? It strikes me as being not too difficult a thing for the two companies to organise.
  6. TenaciousPZ thread starter macrumors regular

    Jan 17, 2007
    This would make a tremendous amount of sense, however I HIGHLY doubt that this is even a possibility.

    You must understand, Apple store employees and At&t store employees are very different people. Apple stores' employees are not going to guilt customers into spending as much money as possible before they leave the store.

    They also are not going to be able to negotiate plans the way At&t stores will. By "negotiate" i mean rip you off.
  7. gco212 macrumors 6502

    Jul 21, 2004
    Well, seeing as how I can go online and buy a plan from AT&T, where there obviously aren't any employees, I think it probably isn't a big deal and that you're looking into this way to hard.
  8. Malakas07 macrumors member

    Jun 13, 2007
    I've pondered the same question. I'm currently a At&t Customer. Have been for many years (8). Currently have a nice family plan.
    Want to upgrade to an iphone.
    So I might have to switch my plan all together.
    How are the Apple Store Employees going to handle these situations?

    Sure they probably are going to link up to the At&t system but they will not posses the same skill set that At&t employees will be able to handle.
  9. Eric1285 macrumors 6502

    Feb 22, 2007
    I think you misinterpreted what I was trying to say. I'm not saying that Apple will set up kiosks in their stores with AT&T employees, but rather that there will be a special counter or kiosk for the iPhone where the Apple store employees can get you signed up for AT&T service.
  10. fishkorp macrumors 68020


    Apr 10, 2006
    Ellicott City, MD
    Apple store employees will probably jsut call in the activation, just like if you activate a phone at Best Buy, Staples, WalMart, Circuit City, etc.
  11. wongulous macrumors 6502a

    Dec 7, 2002
    LOL. This thread is funny.

    Do you know how a wireless company employee activates a phone? In direct stores, and some indirect stores, they just log in to a secure web portal or VPN intranet tool and plug in customer data, credit check, put in equipment info, configure the plan/account, set up the phone, and usually it's instant or near-instant that it's activated, electronically and automatically. Some without security clearance or proper net/web access have to call in, or call in if they're having problems, a weird scenario, or whatever... just depends. Some indirect dealers always have to call in.

    But I guarantee it'll be turn-key, instant, requiring no phonecalls, and 5-15 minutes, just the same as at the Cingular store, at Apple. And most of that time will be filled by signing and going over the contract (if they keep a paper copy, versus an electronic signature submission), going over the phone, and going over the little nits of the service (basic stuff like "call this for CS, here's how to check your VM, you get this many minutes on this date, you're billed from send to end, it rounds up to the nearest minute, etc etc).

    Settle it down, ok? :)
  12. /dev/toaster macrumors 68020


    Feb 23, 2006
    San Francisco, CA
    Wow, might I suggest some Ritalin ... beyond that, details haven't been released so its all a guess right now. Many rumors floating around, and thats all they are is rumors.
  13. wongulous macrumors 6502a

    Dec 7, 2002
    Also, it seems like you're talking more about the sales method--duh. Sales = commission = motivation to get you to buy as much as you need, and sometimes a bit more. Any good, ethical, lasting salesperson won't go too far beyond that because they'll lose repeat business. But repeat business might be 2 years away in the wireless industry, so unless you are working with someone that feels like they might be there in 2 years, sometimes ethics don't quite work.

    But I guarantee the iPhone will be different as it will have its own plans, and the plans WILL be more straightforward, WILL be simpler, and WILL be more customer-friendly. If there is any difference in commission between the plans, or any plan options, sure, those options will be pushed more by the salesrep... but it won't be long until we have that data ourselves, just the same.

    Personally, I'll check it out at the Apple Store, and then head to Cingular's store to activate my iPhone... that way I know I'll have a possibility of getting perks. I might be able to persuade the salesrep to give me free activation, maybe give me a choice of numbers or pick a good vanity number... and I know they get commission. I'd like to give 'em that commission.
  14. gr8tfly macrumors 603


    Oct 29, 2006
    ~119W 34N
    Not to reiterate, but I will clarify my earlier post.

    The store(s) are "prewired". Meaning they have whatever equipment is necessary to connect to AT&T's system. I say "prewired" as they do not have the sales floor equipment installed (since they can't put up the iPhone display until the release), but all the behind-the-scenes stuff is done. They also have cell repeaters in the store, if required (like inside a mail).
  15. nickspohn macrumors 68040


    Jun 9, 2007
    I rather be patient and wait rather than listen to most of these rumors.

    *Details released

    *Finds out the iPhone does something that people said it can't.

    *Finds out the iPhone can't do something a rumor said it can't.

  16. Gonzlobo Suspended

    May 9, 2007
    Wouldn't that be great if they'd just release detail. It's not rocket surgery. :rolleyes:
  17. lekun macrumors regular

    Jan 5, 2006
    Its been rumored (take that for what its worth) that activation / plan selection may happen through iTunes. Plug in your iPhone for the first time and set it up. iTunes clearly has the ability to act as a secure front end to an elaborate web-based service.
  18. JNB macrumors 604


    Oct 7, 2004
    In a Hell predominately of my own making
    Don't you mean brain science? :p
  19. OnlyMarcusCannn macrumors regular

    May 19, 2007
    Las Vegas, NV
    I do recall Steve implying *not* to go to the Apple Retail stores to purchase the iPhone.
    Instead, just go to your local AT&T/Cingular store.

    Yea, yea, the experience is very nostalgic when you purchase something from an actual Apple store. However, I see this as only being a mess, quite frankly.

    It will save a lot of confusion, and hassle (hopefully) by just going to Cingy.
    And there's plenty more Cingular stores in a city then there are Apple stores.

    So why not?:D
  20. geese macrumors 6502a


    Oct 23, 2003
    London, UK
    I'm gonna go out on a limb here and run with the OP's assertion that no-one at Apple has thought about how they are going to sell the phone.

    I reckon that come 28th of July head of retail at Apple will be panicing as they've not realised how they are going to sell the iPhone. They'll be running around like headless chickens shouting OHMYGOD!!! NO ONE TOLD ME I HAD TO WORK OUT HOW TO SELL THE PHONE IN OUR OWN SHOPS! THIS HAS COME AS A TOTAL SUPRISE!!!!!!!!!!

    I cannot, by the wildest stretch of my imagination, think that AT&T and Apple have worked out an arrangement where Apple can sell AT&T contracts in their own stores. I mean, look at all those other shops that sell phone contracts (such as Carphone Warehouse in the UK) from different providers. No way could someone at Apple Retail have the competence to so something like that.

  21. feelthefire macrumors 6502a

    Jun 13, 2006
    Doubt it. That would allow resale of the phone on eBay and allow people to purchase more than the rumored 1 per customer, so I don't see this as being the way it goes.

    It is possible that you'll be able to use iTunes to view your account information, but that's about it.
  22. jovigirl macrumors newbie

    Jun 14, 2007
    apple will make it easy

    apple has quite extensively planned the release of the iphone . phones will be activated in the apple stores. stores will close at 4pm and reopen at 6, most likely staying open until midnight. to guarantee an opportunity to shop for an iphone on the 29th, sign up for a personal shopping appointment at your local apple store. these can be made 14 days in advance and can be done online ( personal shopping appointments are great actually for ANY time you want preferred service. the employees actually greet you by name and dedicate time to answer any questions about the product you're shopping for... no pressure to buy either, which is NOT what i can say for some other computer shopping experiences i have had. as far as making a purchase in a cingular/att store... i was told by a store manager at our local cingular store that they were NOT guaranteed to have them readily available on the 29th (meaning that apple stores would get priority on shipments). don't know how true this is... just saying what i was told. as far as the price of $499... thats just $150 more than the 80G ipod which seems like a helluva fair price to me.. considering all this thing appears to be. i'll be in line on the 29th, WITH a personal shopping appointment. :)
  23. jamesarm97 macrumors 65816

    Sep 29, 2006
    I heard something funny at OfficeMax today. I was walking to the checkout line and there were two employees standing near the checkout talking to the person behind the counter. I heard one say that AT&T will only have one plan and that is it for the iPhone (which may be true), but I had to bite my lip when the guy behind at the register said "I bought an unlocked iPhone". The other guy said, there is only one plan with AT&T again and the cashier said he bought his already online for $799. I could tell he was the type that would make this up because he needed to feel cool. It was just funny how he insisted he already bought one unlocked.
  24. Xenious macrumors 6502a

    Mar 22, 2004
    Texas, USA
    What happens when you order a phone online from amazon? I suspect it will happen the same way.

    You buy iPhone with AT&T SIM in the box, etc. You get home and either
    1) put your current sim in the iphone and call up and change your plan (if needed)
    2) put your new sim in the iphone and call up and enroll

    I don't see why Apple has to do anything special at the store at all other than sell you the hardware. Sure this doesn't stop hoarding or the buy it and don't use the mobile network ideas, but its easy and simple.
  25. dtich macrumors regular

    May 27, 2007
    an apple store manager told me that he was expecting that they will sell phones and be giving out an instruction sheet on signing up for service via the internet or telephone after the in store iphone purchase. which makes a ton of sense to me. fwiw.

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