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Patricia Rust Headshot

My Weekend With the New iPhone

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All set to make a phone call, I reached for my iPhone and it wasn't there! It was gone! M.I.A! I gave it a day to turn up but it never turned up, down, or sideways. The following day I went to the Apple store and replaced it with an iPhone 4. The next day, Apple announced that its latest and greatest phone, the iPhone 4S, was coming in two weeks.

I thought that was a dirty trick but then their beloved leader, Steve Jobs, died so I could hardly cry foul. But a couple of weeks later when my new phone was giving me problems, I showed up at the store the day the new phones were arriving and exchanged mine for the new one. It was only a 45-minute wait and the writer in me took great delight in watching the happy, childlike faces in some sort of cult-like trance uniformly flip over the prospect of a new Apple product. I, myself, love everything Apple, but all this over a phone upgrade? It was a social phenomenon!

You tell me. When they transferred my data to the new phone, they lost or never transferred my photos so those are gone forever because they were not on my computer. And the new phone software managed to delete any contacts they didn't like -- how dare they judge my friends! The next day, I went to make a hair appointment and my hairdresser's number was missing. I went to return a call and the friend's number was also missing. Numbers and names, I discovered were scrambled and need a Sudoku master to unscramble the mess!

In the store, we were having a blast. I saw all my favorite salespeople and the spirit was as though we were at a favorite hangout celebrating the birth of a new product! We were laughing and having a good ole time! Who doesn't like to have fun! But there were customers to get through the lines. Back to the task at hand and that was to make space for the next customer.

Then, when we went to set up my e-mail, the phone gave a message that my passwords were incorrect, and they were not. The employees said that I might want to check them. I showed them on their desktops that the passwords were correct. But the attitude in the store was so elated that it wasn't one of, "Lets dig in and get to the bottom of this." It simply wasn't. "Oh, well," seemed to be the attitude -- they had all had long days there. And my Bluetooth wouldn't sync up. And I was just as guilty because I was caught up in the spirit as much as anyone else. It was "Apple Time" and who wouldn't want to celebrate the life and time of Steve Jobs via a new product even if it was an update who talks to you in the way of a personal assistant?

So, I decided rather than deal with the people with sunny faces who were eventually starting to irritate me because I now thought they were under some sort of Apple spell, I would call tech support the following day. Big mistake. The first 45-minute wait time ended in my being disconnected and the second 90-minute wait ended in a ringing phone that was never answered. Finally, I got hold of a person who explained that I would have to upgrade my whole operating system from a "Snow Leopard" to a "Lion" and then I could bring in "iCloud" which would fix everything. I felt like I was on the Discovery Channel -- it sounded positively thrilling!

This only took an entire Saturday while I bought the program and downloaded it in three hours for the first segment and what seemed like another three for the second. It was no Discovery Channel safari. It was more like a gardening show gone bad with a weed that took over my computer with new icons and messages on the screen wherever I turned! Suddenly, my e-mail looked different so I went straight to the contacts on my phone but they were not corrected. I found myself tangled in cords, plugs, boxes, and my own long legs. At one point the computer shot me a rude message which said, "You are not connected to a power source!" I found myself talking to all these components with the words, "I'm sorry, thank you, oh joy, oh double joy, oh fishsticks, come on, you can do it!" And, just for the record, I am connected to source. I have taken the Wayne Dwyer course via PBS!

I was late for dinner, my contacts were screwed up, I had made a healthy investment in a fabulous phone that wouldn't download my e-mails or connect with my Bluetooth, and I had yet to make a telephone call on it. It seems like while I had been trying to make it work, I had received a number of calls. Hmmm. I checked the ringer and it was on. I went to listen to the voicemail and the personal assistant interrupted and wanted to know how she or it could help. But she or it wouldn't let me listen to my messages! She kept interrupting so finally I asked her to play my voicemail. She told me that she "does not do voicemail." Maybe she does windows.

I decided to go to dinner and then tomorrow see whether I could find an old fashioned phone that had a hook, a ringer, and a receiver. And made a really cool sound like b-r-r-i-n-g, b-r-r-i-n-g! There's an idea! I'm sure once everything settles down and the kinks are out, I will be joyous. Rest in peace, Steve jobs.

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