AT&T hit with order and privacy complaints over Apple iPhone

“Customers trying to reserve the latest version of the iPhone were thwarted by technical glitches that hindered sales on Tuesday, the first day of pre-orders before the device hits stores on June 24,” Alexei Oreskovic and Sinead Carew report for Reuters.

“AT&T Inc customers reported seeing account information of other subscribers while trying to buy the iPhone 4, a spokesman for the firm said,” Oreskovic and Carew report. “Technical errors also prevented some customers from ordering the device using the websites of Apple Inc and AT&T.”

“Frustrated by website problems, customers lined up outside some stores to ask AT&T, the exclusive U.S. iPhone provider, to manually process orders. The problems marked another headache for AT&T, which last week said some iPad users had their personal information exposed via a network security flaw,” Oreskovic and Carew report. “The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has opened a probe into the alleged breach.”

“AT&T spokesman Mark Siegel said the firm had received privacy complaints but it was not clear what information customers had seen because it had not been able to replicate the issue. ‘We’ve received reports of customers inadvertently seeing (other customers’) account information during the iPhone 4 purchasing process,’ Siegel said,” Oreskovic and Carew report. “He added customers could not have seen social security numbers, credit card data or call records. He said the company was still investigating.”

MacDailyNews Take: If AT&T is “investigating” as quickly as it’s been converting its billions of dollars in iPhone profits into a usable, working 3G network, don’t hold your breath.

Oreskovic and Carew report, “AT&T said in a statement that people who preordered on Tuesday afternoon would receive their new phones on June 25 or later. It said devices would be available on a first-come, first-serve basis in stores from June 24. ‘Because of the incredible interest in iPhone 4, today was the busiest online sales day in AT&T history,’ the company said in a statement.”

MacDailyNews Take: Because this only happened like clockwork with all three previous iPhone launches before, inept AT&T was incapable of predicting it and properly preparing for it.

Oreskovic and Carew report, “An attempt by to pre-order the phone on AT&T’s website generated the following error message: ‘There was a problem with your request. “We’re sorry, but we are experiencing a system error that prevents us from completing your request.'”

MacDailyNews Take: Yeah, we saw that… about 100 times!

Oreskovic and Carew report, “Apple’s website said the request could not be processed, and it suggested the customer try again later… The website issues provoked complaints by customers in Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York.”

MacDailyNews Take:

Full article here.

31 Comments

  1. Oreskovic and Carew report, “Apple’s website said the request could not be processed, and it suggested the customer try again later… The website issues provoked complaints by customers in Los Angeles, San Francisco and New York.”

    Because everybody knows that only people in those three cities tried to order iPhones yesterday? Sheesh…

  2. Jesus, I’ve never seen such a bunch of impatient crybabies in my life. I mean, please explain to me, how are any of your lives gonna be wrecked if you have to suffer with using your iPhone 3GS for an extra week.

    And MDN before you throw all blame on AT&T, blame Verizon and Sprint for choosing CDMA instead of the worldwide standard and T-mobile for choosing a non-standard implementation of GSM. Or are standards not a good thing when they impede you immediate gratification?

    In two years both AT&T and Verizon will have rolled out the new LTE standard, AT&T’s exclusive contract will be up, and you’ll be able to choose between the top two carriers.

    Oh, but two years is such a long time. MDN might poop his pants in the meantime. Waaaaaaaaaaahhhh…

  3. People who argue that Verizon would be a better option over ATT are delusional. All the telecoms are scoundrels.

    Debating which mobile carrier is “better” is like debating which CEO is “better” — Dell, Balmer, or Zuckerman.

  4. MacDailyNews:

    – If AT&T;is “investigating” as quickly as it’s been converting its billions of dollars in iPhone profits into a usable, working 3G network, don’t hold your breath.

    – Because this only happened like clockwork with all three previous iPhone launches before, inept AT&T;was incapable of predicting it and properly preparing for it.

    – The “your request couldn’t be processed” graphic above.

    Can’t argue with any of them.

  5. I am a systems load tester for a living for the federal government, and I tests systems that on average assume an arrival rate of anywhere from 20-40 people a second. We test exactly for these cases where a few days a year, certain sites are going to be hit, and going to be hit HARD. It seems illogical to me that neither AT&T nor Apple saw this coming. I did, well, because it is my job to see such things…

    As for one user seeing another user’s data, well, I have seen it before. It is called cross-pollination of data. Usually this occurs when a there is an issue with record locking on a database. A race condition occurs when essentially two or more systems try and access the same row of the database at the same time, and occasionally, the wrong data is sent back. This is all known to occur, and in fact, we have a testing procedure that we do for just such an issue, and we call it our FTUL (pronounced futile) test, or, Functional Test Under Load. I could go on, but I don’t want to bore anyone. But suffice to say this issue is well known and should have been tested for…

  6. I have had all three iPhones. All bought on about the first day of ordering. Never had a problem ordering, activating or using any of them. Great customer service from AT&T;, excellent coverage, and unlimited data. I can’t say the same for MDN, which is a formerly intelligent source of Apple information, but has transformed itself into a self-indulgent, arrogant site for mindless drivel.

  7. Meanwhile, the shipping date at the Apple Store has quietly moved to Bastille Day, July 14!
    Glad I was persistent yesterday!

    MW record – as in “record sales” ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”smile” style=”border:0;” />

  8. 10 times more pre-orders this time than 3gs. 600,000 units. And you expect a miracle in network services.

    I was on the GG Bridge with 800,000 other people. These are no small numbers.

    Take a deep breath and relax.

  9. I agree with Tommy Boy’s post, nothing but a bunch of delusional, “entitled generation” whingers and whiners. You can tell which people were born and raised in the 50s and 60s and were taught to “sit tight, your birthday (or Christmas) is coming, you might get what you asked for”. Not the new breed though, their parents evidently caved in, bought them what they wanted, when they wanted it, rather than put their foot down and face the rants and foot stomping – that would be too unfair – thereby instilling the attitudes we are seeing here and on every other forum commented in. Thank God my 3 sons (mid-30s to early 40s) remembered their upbringing and continue to apply the lessons learned to their kids. This BS isn’t going to stop, won’t go away, and will only be magnified for years to come so as much as I hate the current culture, we are doomed to live with it. When the “I wannabe first” generation wises up and changes their ways (yeah, right!!), we will see less and less of this ‘effin crap. Until then, suck it up and let it pass.

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