Wednesday, August 11, 2010

I Got Sad Mac'd!

Monday night, while I was at the Fair, I started having a problem with my iPhone. The Home button quit working. If you have one of these phones, you know this is like loosing your mouse on your computer. You can get in applications, but you can't get out. Tuesday morning, I was still having problems with it, so I thought I would try syncing it and that maybe it would straighten out.

Recently, I updated to the new OS4.0. I suspected that upgrade might have bugs that was causing my phone to behave erratically. While I was syncing, I noticed there was already an OS Update and iTunes was suggesting I should take it. God help me, I clicked on the button that said "Update". That, my friends, is when I fell down into the rabbit hole.

After iTunes finished updating my phone, it didn't recognize it anymore. I was given the message "iTunes has detected a phone in recovery mode. Use "Restore" to return it to normal". Understand that "Restore" wipes your phone back to factory new and removes all data. It then attempts to restore the data from a backup. I clicked on the button that says "Restore".

After the restore process was complete I get a message: "iTunes has detected a phone in recovery mode. Use "Restore" to return it to normal". After looping through this procedure two more times, I am about ready to throw up from the vertigo.

Nothing else matters when you have to rush one of your little ones off to the emergency room and I tried as best I could to obey traffic laws, but I felt woozy and my mind was reeling on all of the information I depended on this little guy to deliver on the spot whenever I needed it. The imperceptible loss started to creep into my thoughts and I fought to keep them at bay. There was something they could do. There had to be!

My first line of defense was the AT&T Store. I bought it there, so maybe they will know what to do. Things were a little slow in the store so I had the attention of three associates when I burst in through the front doors screaming for a doctor. What I actually did was approach the closest one and start to tell my story in the shortest way I could. They all get this oh-you-poor-man look on their faces and punt my case over to the guy that handles phone hardware issues. After they established I was under warranty, he was quick to turn me over to the folks at Apple. He directed me to the Apple Store in my area. They were kind enough to set an appointment for me, I think they could tell by looking at me I was in no shape to get the appointment myself. The warned me there could be like 30 people ahead of me when I get there. On a Tuesday afternoon? I scoffed, but then again, I had never been there.

It was right at 1:00p and my appointment was for 2:10p. In my haste, I had left home without my wallet and I thought I had better run home and get it. Driving home I remember I had done a load of laundry that morning, including the shorts I had worn to the Fair the night before. Did I take my wallet out of my pocket last night? I start to drive faster, fearing the worst. I run into the house, straight to the dryer door, pull it open and most of the contents of my wallet jump out and land all around my feet. Credit cards are curled, my drivers license is curled and everything that was paper in indecipherable. I rant (quickly because I don't have much time) and grab the essential items and cram them in my still damp wallet and run back to the car.

Once at the Apple Store, I am shocked to see what must be 150 people in the store. Half are scared parents like me and the rest are customers shopping. I am impressed at the number of employees though, maybe twenty. I am directed to a kid with a pink iPad to check-in. After check-in, I wait and I watched. The Apple people are all trained to be smiling, polite and very calm. For me, this was a trauma center, so I appreciated their calm. I watched as they helped people while I waited my turn.

There is a strange phenomena surrounding Apple products. They are all designed in a way that says "We only want very smart customers". Their devices only have one to three controls on them. As a consumer, when you have a problem with one of these devices, you are going to try every combination of controls you can think of to try to fix the problem yourself. You hand it to one of these smug little Apple people and they disappear with it for 30 seconds and present it back to you fully restored. They won't tell you what they did or what the problem was and you know it won't do you any good to ask.

Finally, my turn came and the girl shot to the back room with my phone and quickly returned with it saying we do indeed have an issue with that home button, so she will have to give me a new phone. I have to sign a disclaimer about all of the data I am going to loose, because I must set this device up as a new one and it cannot be restored from the backup of the old one.

I'm not sure I know the moral to this story, all I know is I have a phone again and it will take me a week to get it running like the old one did. Please don't send cards or money...I think I will be ok.

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