No iPhones yet. UPS sucks.

Ordering new iPhones has been quite the roller coaster. The saga began early June 15th, Pre-order Day. I happened to wake up, so I checked their site around 4am to find the store was down. I woke up again shortly before 6am and all I got was an “Oops!” message. Then I tried a few times while I was getting ready for work; eventually the “Oops!” was replaced with the familiar post-it graphic and then around 8 or so the store finally came back online.

From 8am until noon I tried repeatedly to order, getting hung up at various points in the process. Typically it was when Apple made the call out to AT&T to check account information that the process failed due to what I assume was a time out. Sometime around noon Sean said that people in his office had luck with AT&T’s site, so I redoubled efforts there. Still, I failed repeatedly. Sean began trying as well, and finally succeeded a bit after 1pm.

For a few hours we were happy. Finally succeeding in placing an order actually felt like an accomplishment, a hard battle won. Then the reports of cancellations and orders shipping late started rolling in, and we were left unsure of when or if we would get the phones we had spent hours trying to order. Finally AT&T released a statement saying orders placed before 1:30PST would be arriving on the 24th. We felt somewhat reassured, but kept checking the order status.

June 22nd came and a few people reported getting their phones early. The order status stayed the same, we began to lose hope.
June 23rd came and the status on our order was still “In Progress.” Sean’s co-worker, who had placed his order just before us, reported that his status had changed that morning, and he received his phone. Our status stayed the same.

Finally, the night of the 23rd the status finally changed and we had a tracking number. The phones were shipped Next Day Air via UPS. It looked like we were getting our phones on time after all!

I stayed home to wait, hoping UPS would actually come early in the day. FedEx always delivers early in the day, but UPS typically comes around 6pm… although sometimes earlier and I didn’t want to risk not being here to sign for it. So I stayed home and waited. All day. At least Sean was kind enough to bring lunch for me.

Finally, around 6:30PM the UPS trucked rolled down our street. We went downstairs to wait. UPS is known to vanish like ninja, so we didn’t want to risk coming to the door even a moment late. The truck pulled to the curb and stopped. We waited a moment, debated looking overly eager, then opened the door and stood waiting. We were excited our phones were finally here! Then, the truck pulled away.

Yes, the truck just left. I immediately picked up the phone and called UPS. When I finally made it through the menus and got a real person I was basically told it was too early to try calling the truck; they could always be sending it on another truck later and the status still said “Out For Delivery” so obviously everything was perfectly fine and the packaged was guaranteed to be delivered that day. I expressed my doubts, but was getting nowhere so I hung up and waited.

At 7:15 we called back. Sean spoke to them this time and managed to get the local people to call him back sometime after 8. They assured him it was unusual for UPS to lose a package and that we might get it the next day. Basically they lost it and just hoped it would be found that night when packages were scanned again. It was suggested we report it as lost to AT&T.
No way we were going to do that yet! I do not need the headache that would ensue if the package was recalled to AT&T or if we finally got the phones and AT&T had cancelled our order, or any other unpleasant scenario that was bound to happen if we told AT&T before we were absolutely certain our phones were lost forever.

Right now it is 3:45PM June 25, We are still waiting. However, there was a new scan recorded on their tracking page this morning, and it once again says “Out for delivery” so maybe we will get it today. I expect we will find out in about three more hours.

UPDATE: We did get them June 25th and they are awesome.