updated 11:45 am EDT, Tue July 1, 2008
O2 on iPhone activation
The activation process for the iPhone 3G should indeed be in two steps, O2 Ireland has confirmed. As part of its release information on the 3G, the company has mentioned that the first part of activation will involve the SIM card being activated in-store. To actually use the phone, however, people will then have to sync the phone with their computer's copy of iTunes, and run through a separate series of activation steps.
The details of this second half are unclear, but it has been rumored that they may involve the App Store and special billing requirements. The in-store half of the activation has generally been considered the more important side of the equation, due not only to worries of lines on launch day, but the effective halting of unlocking for those not willing to spend on early termination costs or a prepaid device.