My AT&T Iphone unlocking'
[ Edited ]
05-01-2012 02:32:43 PM - edited 05-01-2012 02:40:12 PM
First of all, thank you for whoever reading my story. I write it down not only to vent my fruitration and disapointment, but also an experience that I want to share with everyone.
As you all know, AT&T started to unlock on April 8th 2012. This is great. It shows that AT&T really respects their customers and are confident enough in its quality that even with unlocking, its customers still stick with AT&T and not move to another phone carrier.
I am an AT&T customer, or to be specific "a prepaid AT&T customer" for more than 6 months. I am an internation student. To be able to sign a contract, I need to have a good credit or deposit $400+ for 2 years. I am a student and I don't have that kind of money. Even though, I have a good credit but without Social Security Number, I can't sign a contract. I just don't have a choice but to go for prepaid.
And here my unlocking journey started:
It was the morning Sunday that AT&T announced its unlocking and the first thing I did on Monday was going to a local AT&T store. To be honest, I don't know how all the departments in AT&T work but the lady there greeted me with "sorry we don't unlock Iphone" and pointed me to a 3rd-party phone seller who she assured that "the people there will unlock your iphone, but you need to pay some money." I asked her again and she confirmed "only 3rd-party phone seller can unlock your iphone" I may be a fool to trust her and after i drove for a mile to the nearest one, the Chinese laday there said "No, we don't unlock Iphone. Only AT&T can unlock it."
I tried to keep my calm and went back to the AT&T store. The laday, again, guaranteed me that AT&T didn't unlock Iphone. I showed her the website with the news from my Iphone and she didn't even care to take a look. Disapointed, I drove another 4 miles to another AT&T store. As least, someone knows his job well and the man straight away said that we don't do unlocking here and I needed to call AT&T or go to the Chat Support.
Exhausted from the 3 hours trip, I created an AT&T wireless account and inputed my prepaid phone number. Unfortunately, the chat support service doesn't support prepaid phone and suggested me to call AT&T Customer Service. I called it a day as I was really really depressed and had no mood to talk on the phone.
The next day, I called AT&T customer support. Since my number is a prepaid phone number, It linked me to prepaid customer support. The people there were helpful. They tried to help me. However, the process was dragging. I can't remember how many times I was on 15 minutes hold or drop calls which is a lot for a limited-minutes phone number. They can't confirm if I am eligable for unlocking as they couldn't check if my account or the original owner was in good standing and the phone's contract condition. I tried to persuade by showing them that I already used their prepaid service for more than 6 months. I paid my bill on time and my account was good. Finally, the laday there filed a case number for me and asked me to fax the original receipt. Wait.. I already told her that I purchased the phone as second hand from a 3rd-party website. It's impossible for me to contact the original owner, not mentioning someone would keep his 2 years old receipt. I thanked her and called again, and after I talked to 4 AT&T customer representative, the last one finally told me the reason that prepaid phone customer support doesn't do unlocking Iphone and they need to contact other department, and to be able to contact other department, they need the receipt or proof of purchase. Exhausted from 2 hours talking and my phone was draining out of minutes, I still tried to look for the original owner's profile. I called him, he didn't pick up the phone. I sent him a text-message, then an e-mail, explaining my situation and seeking for his help, he didn't reply. Everything was "great".
After two weeks of giving up, my friend suggested me sending an e-mail. I had no choice but to lie that I am living in oversea and used the famous-Asian-broken English intetionally. After two days, I was so happy when I received an reply e-mail that my phone is eligable and needed to wait 8 days as there are many requests. I knew there was hope. I knew some people 's iphone was unlocked before time, so I e-mailed again with my case number yesterday to ask the current process and I got an e-mail:
"The unlock code for this device is unavailable due to security
restrictions based on the device's history."
No sender name, no "Sincerely" at the end. It feels like an automatic e-mail. I don't know if AT&T is playing game with its customer but to be honest, It has been more than 20 days and I'm really exhausted. It seems like taking forever just to unlock a phone and I'm really depressing.
I hope my story can help AT&T improves its quality and service, and thank you for whoever reading it.