Apple Offers $30 iTunes Store Gift Certificates to Smooth Over iPhone 3G S Activation Delays

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Date: Monday, June 22nd, 2009, 09:10
Category: iPhone 3GS, News

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For iPhone 3G S customers experiencing delays activating their new units, Apple may be lending a hand.

According to CNET, Apple began notifying affected customers via e-mail on Sunday that they may experience additional delays for another two days due to “system issues” and “high activation volumes,” according to readers in various blogs who claim to have received the e-mail. The problems began immediately after the new iPhone’s launch Friday.

As a way of apology for the delays, the same e-mail said Apple plans to offer customers a US$30 credit iTunes Store credit for “the inconvenience this delay has caused.”

Here’s the entire text of the e-mail:

Dear Apple Customer,
Thank you for your recent Apple Store order. We appreciate your patience and apologize for the inconvenience caused by the delay in your iPhone activation.

We are still resolving the issue that was encountered while activating your iPhone with AT&T. Unfortunately, due to system issues and continued high activation volumes, this could take us up to an additional 48 hours to complete.

On Monday, you’ll receive an email from Apple with an iTunes Store credit in the amount of $30. We hope you will enjoy this gift and accept our sincere apologies for the inconvenience this delay has caused.

Thank you for choosing Apple.

Sincerely,
Apple Online Store Team

Apple representatives have yet to comment on this.

Jobs Receives Liver Transplant, Expected to Return to Apple at End of June

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Date: Monday, June 22nd, 2009, 09:23
Category: News

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While it was never entirely clear what Apple co-founder Steve Jobs would do to recuperate between January and June, a Wall Street Journal article maintains that he’s had a liver transplant and that his return to work may be gradual at first.

Citing sources close to the story, the article state that Jobs had his transplant two months earlier through doctors in Tennessee. Although these are sometimes problematic, the company head is viewed as “recovering well” and on track to resume his usual post in the often-repeated late June timeframe.

Upon his return, Jobs isn’t expected to go full-out, as usual. Instead, his physicians have reportedly advised him to only work part-time for the first “month or two” until it’s certain he can handle a full slate.

As a consequence, Tim Cook, normally the chief operating officer and temporarily handling chief executive duties during Jobs’ absence, may now be more involved with Apple’s leadership than he has in the past. How much of this will vary from his current acting CEO role isn’t clear, but it’s hinted he may be placed on Apple’s board of directors sometime soon, giving him greater sway over the direction of the Mac maker.

The transplant, if true, could well create a much clearer picture of what triggered Jobs’ rapid weight loss in 2008 and his forced break in 2009. Washington University doctor William Hawkins believes that the pancreatic cancer that affected Jobs in 2004, once thought cured, metastasized again in his liver — the organ most likely to continue supporting that particular form of cancer. About three quarters of all those who recover from the initial pancreatic tumor get that cancer again.

Strangely enough, few opt for a liver transplant, as spare organs are rare and there’s no guarantee that replacing the cancerous organ will solve the problem. The odds are nonetheless good and again see three quarters of those who pick the transplant option surviving at least five years longer. Tennessee was likely chosen as the waiting list was shorter than in other states and feasible for a man with the income to travel wherever he could get the quickest treatment.

Not surprisingly, confirming any of these assertions proves difficult through Apple’s tendency towards secrecy, and especially that of Steve Jobs, who has long expressed frustration with journalists and investors intruding into what he sees as a private matter. None of the hospitals committed to regularly performing liver transplants say they have Jobs as a patient. When asked, Apple spokeswoman Katie Cotton would only echo the company’s official statement that Jobs “continues to look forward” to his end-of-June return.

Apple Sells 750,000 iPhone 3G S Units Upon Launch

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Date: Monday, June 22nd, 2009, 08:20
Category: iPhone 3GS

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The numbers are in and Piper Jaffray’s Gene Munster claims Apple sold 750,000 iPhone 3G S handsets over the launch weekend.

According to Macworld UK, Munster’s estimate that Apple sold about 750,000 iPhones over the three-day weekend, is 50% more than his initial prediction (500,000) but 25% less than the 1 million iPhone 3Gs Apple sold on launch last July.
The company sold one million units of the original iPhone were sold in the 74 days after it launched in the U.S.

Fortune reports that Munster and his colleagues surveyed 256 customers at Apple’s New York and Minneapolis stores and found that 28% were switching carriers to AT&T, down from 38% last year and 52% in 2007.

The analysts discovered that 56% were upgrading from an old iPhone, up from 38% last year. “We believe this shows Apple is developing brand loyalty not enjoyed by other mobile phone makers,” Munster writes.

Per the survey, 43% bought the high-end 32GB iPhone 3G S, compared to 66% who bought the high-capacity 16GB model last year and the 95% who opted for 8GB over the 4GB when the iPhone first went on sale.

Of the customers buying their first iPhone, 12% were switching from a Research in Motion BlackBerry, up from 6% during the launch of the iPhone 3G. Munster said this: “may indicate the company is making headway among business users slowly adopting the iPhone platform for corporate use.”