Saturday, July 7, 2007

Is 07-07-07 my lucky day?

I hope so, because yesterday was just depressing.

After my "Bar driving" experience, I decided to call the AT&T store and see what, if anything, they could suggest to "improve your experience" -- like being able to make a freakin' phone call from home! or receive one!

While "Bruce" was polite and appologetic, he didn't really offer any solution to my issue with the AT&T network. No known tower problems, no knowledge of when or if they would address the East Lansing "dead zone". I pried out of him that a repeater anntenna might help, but they don't know of anything. "We just refer people to anntenna.com" or Wireless Giant (a local accessory store). He concluded (actually several times during the call), noting that there is a 14-day return policy on the iPhone. Sad, just sad.

My wife suggested I call Apple. (well, duh! good idea!).

I was on hold for about 2 minutes to the support number that was included in my activation e-mail (AT&T's local store answered as soon as I got through the menus). "Steve" in Cupertino (or where ever), heard out my problem, but had no suggestions either, short of wireless.att.com and apple.com/support discussion forums. He opined that describing the return policy was not the best response to a problem with "No Service" on the cell network. He was also puzzled (or at least silent) about the "baseband log" files that have appeared on my Windows computer ("I don't know much about that"), even when I described the contents as looking like records of failed phone calls that may be being sent back to the Apple mother ship. (Is Apple watching us? Are they gathering data on the "quality" of the AT&T network to bludgeon them with? I hope so!)

Today, we are going to visit my son in Chicago (also an MSU Computer Science grad), enjoy some of the food at "Taste of Chicago", watch a Chicago Fire MLS soccer match at Toyota park, and (suprise!) show off the iPhone. Coverage ought to be wonderful.

It's 07-07-07! It ought to be my lucky day...

2 comments:

morebarsinmoreplaces said...

Pat--
Learn something new every day! I didn't know our black hole extended so far! You know your friends have AT&T service when they enter the house and hear the dreaded "beboop" of signal loss. Friendly offer: If you need to make a call, I can show you the well-worn five by seven foot patch in the front yard where you can get three bars. well, sometimes two,,,

I've been complaining to Cingular about this for four years now, but never by cell-o-phone. Same old song-and-dance. (You should hear us singing "One Cingular Sensation"...)

Now for the good news! Proving corporate intelligence is indeed an oxymoron, AT&T moved their local corporate offices to approximately 3/4 of a mile directly Nortwest of your home -- and ALL the Honchos have been griping that -- ready for this -- are you sitting down? -- THEIR PHONES DON"T WORK!

"Bruce" told me that they've already tried a repeater locally -- and it didn't work. (TechNerd question: how indeed do you repeat a signal you never receive???) We are going to be getting not one, but TWO new cell towers in the neighborhood as fast as crews can be assembled... then again, knowing SBC and AT&T, I do hope that's a year beginning in 2-something.

SO far, the only brand of phones we've found that work over here are Nokia, and the best one of those is the "old" 6102i, which I keep calling the 6502, for some non-Intel reason...

Oh, and if you like the Safari browser you should test drive the next Apple operating system. I hear it's being ported over to the Wintel universe.

and I think they're going to use our black hole to do it...

Pat said...

Thanks for your comment, morebars...

I intend to keep reporting the data I'm gathering while "bar driving" (& walking). I'll have more to say about my search for a signal booster, too.

By the time this fortnight is up, I may be able to write an entire book on "customer service", another fine oxymoron...