updated 02:45 pm EDT, Tue June 26, 2007
Switching number to iPhone
As a part of the recently-premiered iPhone activation video, Apple explains that customers currently outside AT&T should be able to carry their old numbers over without undue hassle. To do this, users must plug in their iPhone, which will then launch the activation process in iTunes. At a certain stage, the software prompts users to choose whether they are already with AT&T or a new customer -- after picking the latter, users can enter their present number and account information, such a password and ZIP code. Individual and FamilyTalk plans should be available.
The main concern for new customers may be a question of how soon they are able to use their purchases. Because the request has to pass through AT&T and be processed by a separate carrier, it may take some time; the splash screen warns that transfers "may take up to 6 hours," and that until then, the iPhone will only be able to make outgoing calls. All incoming calls will be directed to the previous phone. This problem could be compounded by the 6PM launch time of the iPhone, which means that some customers may have to wait a day for normal service.