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iPhone 3G: in-store activation only, free upgrades

updated 08:30 pm EDT, Mon June 9, 2008

AT&T talks iPhone contract

Following the announcement of its price hike, AT&T on Monday said that all iPhone 3G handsets must be activated at the time of purchase in the retail store and that all first-generation phones purchased after May 27th will be eligible for a free upgrade to the 3G model. In an interview with Gizmodo the company said that Apple/AT&T would not allow home-based activation via iTunes, which Apple's CEO touted during the initial launch. AT&T's President of National Distribution Glenn Lurie told the publication that there would no in-home activation for iPhone 3G and that the new iPhone 3G must be activated in either an Apple or AT&T store.

The AT&T exec said that the would takes only "10-12 minutes" and that his company would provide more details regarding the sales procedures for the new iPhone sometime "in the next week or so;" however, he suggested that there may not be online sales of the iPhone 3G at launch and thus users may have to travel to retail store to purchase the new device.

In addition, Ars Technica says that consumers who purchased an original iPhone on or after May 27 will be eligible to upgrade the device to an iPhone 3G at no additional cost.

Further elaborating the details on contracts, the publication reports that AT&T will make all iPhone 3G buyers sign a new 2-year contract, effectively replacing their current contract. Some had speculated that AT&T may add an additional 2 years to existing contracts, but report said that buyers would start on a fresh new contract of 2-years from date of purchase, regardless of the term left on their contact. Existing customers will also be able to purchase the iPhone for $199, the report said.

by MacNN Staff



  1. mgpalma

    Joined: Dec 1969



    "all iPhone 3G handsets must be activated at the time of purchase in the retail store"

    What a colossally inconvenient and poor move. And I thought only the lack of 32GB was the bad news for the day.

  1. chotty

    Joined: Dec 1969



    What happened to us 1st gen iPhone users from getting "Grandfathered" into an extended contract?
    *I can't IMAGINE the CHAOS on 7/11 if each person on line has to activate the phone in-store. Wow...

  1. bobolicious

    Joined: Dec 1969


    And what about...

    ...the aftermarket for all those used 2.5 iPhones on unlocked GSM networks? (wishful thinking)Or do they all go to landfill to help Edward Burtynsky make his next feature film 'Manufactured iScapes'...?;-)

  1. jwdsail

    Joined: Dec 1969



    I refuse to give out my personal financial info the the.. um characters at the only ATT or Apple store within a 6 hr drive of me.. sry Apple, you just lost a sale.. off to ebay I go ..

  1. Londor

    Joined: Dec 1969


    What did you expect?

    The iPhone 3G costs $199 because it's being subsidised by AT&T so they are not going to sell you one unless you first sign a contract with them.

  1. dmsimmer

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Now that's a LINE

    So, I want to buy one as a

    No cash, must be in store activation. And you must hold it with your right hand and look forward the entire time.

    Or, no soup for you!

  1. bobolicious

    Joined: Dec 1969


    iBrain 2009...

    ...temple implants will offer 4G communication speeds, infinite dopamine generation

  1. bobolicious

    Joined: Dec 1969



    and other 'undisclosed benefits' all for merely the assignment of principal assets (including offspring) and signing of an nda...

    GPS & cash flow monitoring provided free of charge...

    (previous post was cut off - conspiracy theorists may want to take note :)

  1. kobi

    Joined: Dec 1969


    No more jailbreaking?

    The activation at the store is to make sure that hackers won't be able to buy the 3G iPhone. I Love It! Serves them right! So with activating at the store, hackers will now have to be committed to a iPhone and plan for two years if they want a 3G iPhone. That helps prevent someone buying the phone and doing a SIM unlock and using the iPhone on T-Mobile.

  1. RKDinOKC

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Activation Fiasco

    How soon everyone forgets the activation fiasco when the iPhone was first released.

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