Ernst-Jan Pfauth is the former Editor in Chief of Internet at NRC Handelsblad, as well as an acclaimed technology author and columnist. He a Ernst-Jan Pfauth is the former Editor in Chief of Internet at NRC Handelsblad, as well as an acclaimed technology author and columnist. He also served as The Next Web’s blog’s first blogger and Editor in Chief, back in 2008. At De Correspondent, Ernst-Jan serves as publisher, fostering the expansion of the platform.
Your blogger waisted six hours of his life on a friggin’ phone today. The only Dutch operator that offers the iPhone 3G couldn’t handle (Dutch link) the data load the activation process required. The result? Every single iPhone had to be registered by calling up the T-Mobile headquarters. When you take in account that all the iPhone-selling stores had to do this, you won’t be surprised to hear that waiting times to get a hold of a T-Mobile HQ employee were as long as 80 minutes. That crisis resulted in a very bizarre daily schedule for me:
7 am: Getting up – jumping on my bicycle to go to Amsterdam’s largest T-Mobile Store in the Kalverstraat.
7.30 am: Arriving at the store, a forty-year old Apple fanboy hands me a coffee. There are around 30 people waiting.
8 am: Store manager hands out numbers, there are only 35 iPhones available. Just enough for the people who are already waiting. I have number 24.
9.30 am: Store opens: first lucky seven enter the store.
9.35 am: System crashes. From now on it takes around 90 minutes per customer.
11.00 am: Most of the people who were part of the first round have left the store. 28 people and I realize we’re here for quite a while. Especially as T-Mobile employees help out four friends who have just arrived. When customers tell the store manager this, he acts like he has no idea of what’s going on.
12.15 pm: The store manager now makes the same mistake and helps out a friend of his. He then disappears.
1.00 pm: Finally! There’s my number. Let’s buy that shiny object.
1.45 pm: I’m lucky since the guy who sells my iPhone manages to reach T-Mobile HQ pretty fast. It only took me thirty minutes to buy the phone. Pity that I had to wait for five hours and thirty minutes to do so.
British O2 operator has also failed
O2 also suffered from technical glitches – causing waiting lines of 90 minutes. Mobile Computer interviewed visitors no. 2 and 3 at the London Regent Street Apple Store – who left early because the whole buying process took to long:
Update: there’s a new gadget around, called the iBrick.
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