If I don't want to preorder online, what to do?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by ajcadoo, Sep 24, 2011.

  1. ajcadoo macrumors 6502

    ajcadoo

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2011
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #1
    I preordered my iPhone 3GS on att.com once it was announced but the shipment was delayed for days because of the demand.

    My question: How do you buy an iPhone at an Apple Store?

    I am currently up for an upgrade (my 2 year contract has expired) and I am waiting for the next iPhone. How does the Apple Store activate my ATT service on my new phone? Do you do it online once you have the phone? What about the SIM card? How does it all work?

    I think I wanna be one of the people camping out a couple hours before the Apple Store opens to make sure I get it on day one instead of having to wait for a darn pre-order.
     
  2. Reach9 macrumors 68020

    Reach9

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2010
    Location:
    In America
    #2
    Wait in line at your local carrier store if they're selling the iPhone. This way, chances are you'll be able to get there early and in the front of the line.
     
  3. ap3604 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2011
    #3
    Your kidding right? :p
     
  4. Peace macrumors Core

    Peace

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    #4
    LOL . Apple stores have longer lines than the carrier usually does.
     
  5. ajcadoo thread starter macrumors 6502

    ajcadoo

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2011
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #5
    No I am not. Did you understand my question? How is the phone activated, and associated with my sim card, etc. etc.? I have no idea how all this works. When AT&T shipped my 3GS, it was already activated and ready to go.
     
  6. ap3604 macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2011
    #6
    Pretty sure you can pre-order to allow you to pick it up in the store so you don't have to wait in the regular long line.

    As for activation the Apple reps do everything for you, including changing your sim card to a micro-sim. Nothing at all to worry about.
     
  7. grantsdale macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    May 11, 2008
    #7
    Just preorder online from apple.com

    No fuss, no standing in line, no problems.
     
  8. tbayrgs macrumors 603

    tbayrgs

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2009
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #8
    Apple stopped doing reservation for store pickup after the 3GS. You could preorder the iPhone 4 for delivery only but it worked out great for me at my phone was delivered a day before retail launch.
     
  9. Pooshka, Sep 24, 2011
    Last edited: Sep 24, 2011
  10. wordoflife macrumors 604

    wordoflife

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2009
    #10
    You tell them you want a iPhone. They pull the model you want from the back and they pull a new SIM card from the drawer, activate it, and insert into said phone. You sign whatever corresponding docs they need (contracts, etc, etc) and you walk out the door.
     
  11. sulpfiction macrumors 68030

    sulpfiction

    Joined:
    Aug 16, 2011
    Location:
    Philadelphia Area
    #11
    False! I preordered my iPhone 4 for in store pickup and got in line...a separate line then those w/o preorders.
     
  12. tctony macrumors 6502a

    tctony

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2009
    #12
    Preorder online from Apple. Receive iPhone. Activate iPhone. Done.
     
  13. ajcadoo thread starter macrumors 6502

    ajcadoo

    Joined:
    Sep 17, 2011
    Location:
    San Diego, CA
    #13
    Thats exactly what I needed to know. Thanks

    ----------

    I will either preorder on apple.com or go to a retailer/apple store. thanks for all the replies. i have furthered my knowledge of how launch phones are activated.
     
  14. bigtallguy macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2010
    #14
    same here
     
  15. aristobrat macrumors G4

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    #15
    The SIM card comes pre-installed in all iPhones. The activation process (plugging your new iPhone into a computer running iTunes, which is supposed to be done in the store) will associate your account with that new SIM. It also removes from your account your old SIM, if applicable.

    When you buy one at Apple, the employee will get some basic AT&T information from you, and type it into their iPod touch thingy. That information then gets sent to AT&T, who returns back to Apple the price that you're eligible to buy an iPhone for. If you chose to buy, the Apple employee gets a little more information, and by the end, AT&T knows everything it needs to know to associate your new iPhone with your account.

    What Apple *can't* do is remove anything on your AT&T account that is incorrect. So if your bill is past due and AT&T returns back that you're ineligible to buy an iPhone until it's caught up, they can't fix that. If you have a lock on your account that prevents changes, they can't fix that.
     
  16. Rodimus Prime macrumors G4

    Rodimus Prime

    Joined:
    Oct 9, 2006
    #16
    due to Apple stupid system of making you get a new sim card for the new iPhone AT&T system generally gets slammed on release day. I expect Verizon activation and phone switching is going to suck on release day as well.
    Mix that with also having to go threw Apple servers and having any issues between either of those points mean no phone activation.

    Apple should follow the same way everyone else does and that is just reuse your old sim card. My sim card is over 4 years old and on its 3rd cell phone. My dads sim card still says Cingular on it and is on its 4th or 5th phone at this point.
    Mom and sister had to replace their sim cards due to the iPhone and due to a glitch my brother iPhone never used the new sim card in his iPhone but uses his old cingular sim card.
     
  17. batman75 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Apr 15, 2010
    #17
    I usually just swap the microsim from the old phone. No need to activate new microsim.
     
  18. akuma13 macrumors 6502a

    akuma13

    Joined:
    Jan 10, 2006
    #18
    Does anyone know if you'll be able to but these unlocked/contract free from Verizon or Apple day one?
     
  19. rockyroad55 macrumors 601

    rockyroad55

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    Jul 14, 2010
    Location:
    Phila, PA
    #19
    I'm pretty sure your old microsim becomes unusable once they activate the new microsim in the iPhone with your number.
     
  20. tbayrgs macrumors 603

    tbayrgs

    Joined:
    Jul 5, 2009
    Location:
    Florida, USA
    #20
    My bad, didn't recall that was an available option so for those who prefer to go that route, hopefully it'll be an option for this release as well. Just curious though why would you go this route if you can have the phone delivered to your home on launch day (or even earlier in my case :D) and thus forgo having to wait in any line?
     
  21. The Californian macrumors 68040

    The Californian

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    Jan 17, 2009
    Location:
    Surfers Paradise
    #21
    Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_5 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8L1 Safari/6533.18.5)

    I've actually purchased mine from my local AT&T store on the morning of release. It was more of a spur of the moment thing where I happened to be up and went down - they've always had plenty and at most 8 people in line.
     
  22. rockyroad55 macrumors 601

    rockyroad55

    Joined:
    Jul 14, 2010
    Location:
    Phila, PA
    #22
    I preordered the iPhone 4 at an AT&T store and got it delivered on the morning of release. I might not do that agin this year since the servers went down last year and it was hectic. I even got an apple preorder just in case, but I gave it to a friend of mine who got his iPhone 4.
     
  23. Applejuiced macrumors Westmere

    Applejuiced

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    At the iPhone hacks section.
  24. boshii macrumors 68040

    boshii

    Joined:
    Jul 6, 2008
    Location:
    Atlanta, GA
    #24
    I went that route because I would hate to be stuck at home waiting for the UPS guy to show up. I would constantly be checking outside every time I hear a truck engine.

    Plus, sometimes you meet some pretty cool people while standing in line. Everyone standing in line for an iPhone on day 1 has something in common, so there are always good conversations.
     
  25. earlycuyler macrumors member

    Joined:
    Apr 30, 2009
    Location:
    The foothills of Appalachia
    #25
    I have a family plan with AT&T. I'm (likely) going to need to use the upgrade available on another line to upgrade the 3GS on the line I currently use. Is that something they can handle at the Apple store (physical or online), or will I need to go through AT&T to get that done?

    EDIT: I don't mean to hijack this thread in any way. I just figured this would be a good place for the question since it is somewhat related and I know the repetitive threads from us noobs can get annoying.
     

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