Genius Bar Success Story

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by wjlafrance, Sep 2, 2010.

  1. wjlafrance macrumors 6502

    Dec 23, 2009
    Madison, WI
    A few weeks ago I bought an iPhone 3G for $125 off craigslist and used it for a while with a GoPhone SIM, but I decided it's far too slow for my purposes, which is development. Today I bought a iPhone 3GS for $70, plus my iPhone 3G. The guy said he'd been "having trouble" with it, but I decided to take it "in the condition it was in", which was a really bad idea in my 20-20 hindsight.

    Basically, it couldn't read my SIM card. It was at the Emergency Call screen. I restored it. Same thing. I restored it. Same thing. I pwned it. Same thing. I pwned and hacktivated it. Same thing. I put 4.0.2 on it. Same thing. Each time I'm at the Emergency Call screen and it shows up as an iPhone in recovery mode in iTunes.

    Okay, obviously it's a hardware issue, so I go to the Apple Store. The Genius searches everywhere with her little flashlight to make sure it's not water damaged (which thankfully, it wasn't) and proceeds to tell me that the error is possibly caused by some lint in the dock connecter. Obviously the dock connector has no bearing on it reading a SIM card, but I'm playing along at this point.

    She comes back and we have the same issue. Going forward, she pulls the SIM tray out of the phone and looks up the serial number. It's an iPhone 3G, out of warranty. Wait a minute, it's obviously not a 3G. She tells me that she can't verify the serial number without the SIM tray from the phone or the phone being recognized by iTunes, and I need to call AT&T to see what they can do for me (WTF?).

    At this point I apologize that I'm about to make it difficult, and tell her that I have a utility on my MacBook that can kick it out of recovery mode (TinyUmbrella), and it will then show up in the developer tools. She does what a good employee would do before allowing a customer to run a jailbreak utility in-store in front of a bunch of customers, and runs to the back to ask for permission. Apparently she explained the entire situation to her manager, because she came out and said she was going to take my phone and remove the screen to get the serial number.

    She disappears with my phone again and comes back 5-10 minutes later with my phone and a black box, containing a brand new iPhone 3GS. I sign initial here and here, sign and date here and here, and then I am handed my new phone.

    TL;DR: The bottom line is that Apple's customer care is the gold standard. I paid $195 for a cell phone, out of contract, that retailed for $199 with a 2 year contract only a few months ago. My only regret is that the new phone came with 4.0.2 so I can't use the T-Mobile SIM that's arriving in the mail tomorrow until 4.0.2 or 4.1 is jailbroken, but we're obviously counting days on that one since the dev team is great.

    EDIT -
    Anyone know of an unlock for 4.0.2?
  2. iUser4Lyfe macrumors 6502

    Jun 15, 2009
    No jailbreak for 4.0.2 so there definitely no unlock.

    Amazed that you were able to get a phone you bought off a guy on craigslist replaced for a brand new one at an apple store. Obviously you were a pleasure to deal with. People don't understand that techs WANT to help and if your willing to work with them, politely of course, they usually are willing to work with you.
  3. ulbador macrumors 68000


    Feb 11, 2010
    I think anyone that has worked in customer service knows there are basically two types of customers when it comes to dealing with problems.

    Most customers have this crazy sense of entitlement , which can often lead to a rude customers. Of course the other kind, those that actually show a bit if decency, often get quite a bit further.
  4. wjlafrance thread starter macrumors 6502

    Dec 23, 2009
    Madison, WI
    I was thinking along the lines of SIM adapters and stuff. I've never used one and don't even know how they work. Is this an option for the iPhone?

    I started out as a "dummy customer". My iPhone isn't working. Basically, I let her walk through restoring it and whatnot like I knew she has to as protocol, but I did mention I'd restored it before. When she got the serial off the SIM tray and told me my phone was out of warranty, I respectfully corrected her. I pointed out that the phone is a 3GS (shiny lettering) and the serial matches a 3G and therefore is clearly incorrect. When she told me I was going to have to go to AT&T, I basically mentioned "You know, I can get the serial number. I'm sorry for being difficult, but you know.. iPhones are expensive." She said that I wasn't being difficult and she understood completely, and it worked out.

    My big backup was that the warranty is explicitly transferable. The fact that I bought it dead off craigslist has no bearing on that. They'd have to find out the reason it was broken, which was most likely due to a poor jailbreak.
  5. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere


    Apr 16, 2008
    At the iPhone hacks section.
    No, those dont work and they are very buggy.
    Also not sure if they make them for microsim.
    All you can do is wait for a new JB once 4.1 is out and hopefully an unlock also.
  6. milamber macrumors regular

    Jun 18, 2008
  7. lorenwade macrumors 68000


    Aug 27, 2008
    People like this ruin so much. Wow. Way to be cool, dude. :rolleyes:

    Bottom line is, it really IS a cool story. :D
  8. WhatAmI macrumors 6502a


    Sep 2, 2009
    Congrats and as someone said, playing along pretending and then dropping the TinyUmbrella bomb -you must have been a very nice customer to get this through the system. Good on ya! :)
  9. detoxguy macrumors member

    Jul 24, 2009
    yawn. boring bro

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