My Experience As a Regular Person Setting Up the New iPhone 5

The box arrived late in the afternoon. I had ordered my new phone on the first day, but not until the “first wave” was all sold out. That was fine with me. I didn’t mind waiting. (I enjoy the anticipation 🙂 )

Let me start with the order process: This was the very first time that I did not buy my Apple product at the Apple store. I have always purchased there, and I have always let them set it up and get me started. They are truly awesome at getting you “good to go” as you walk out the door.

* Note to readers who are considering getting an iPhone for the first time: If you can get to an Apple store, go there and put yourself in their hands. They will have you all set up and comfortable before you leave the store. You don’t have to do a thing.*

But this time was different. I decided to take the route of least resistance, without the pressing crowds (Apple stores are always crowded, especially when there is a new launch). Since I happened to be near an AT&T store, (and that is my carrier), I stepped inside and quickly found myself at the counter where I ordered my phone. So simple, and no crowds. I was feeling smug.

Then they told me it would be shipped to my house. This was good (but a bit scary) news. I knew this was the way it would happen, but I quickly found myself developing cold feet.

Now this is exactly the reason I have always gone to the Apple store, before. “Shipped to my house” now meant that I, me, JUST me, not an “Apple Genius”, would be responsible to set up my new phone AND activate it.

“The Scream” Edvard Munch photo credit: Wikipedia

Set it up? Activate it? Move the number from my old phone to my new one? Me? {Deep breath}

They did assure me that if I had trouble, I could bring it to them and they would activate it. And I knew I could go to Apple, too, with either setting up or activation issues. So with those safety nets in place, I agreed to be brave. “Sure,” I said with false bravado, “Just send the iPhone to me. I’ll be panicked fine.”

It arrived quickly. I felt a “yay!” and an “uh oh” in an odd simultaneous thought.

Someone very dear to me once taught me “if you touch it, do it” and, remembering that advice, I got right to the task.

Opening the box I was pleasantly surprised at the appearance of the new iPhone. It is much thinner than the 4 that I had, and longer.

There were instructions in the box from AT&T. They were short and sweet. Once again I felt that odd mix of confidence and fear.

There are two ways to upgrade a new iPhone. (If you are getting your first phone, this is not an issue. Just turn it on and follow the steps). Since I was upgrading, I had to make a choice. I could do this over iCloud (no wires) or through iTunes (attach the phone to a cable and my computer). Since I frequently still sync with the computer, and my phone was all backed up, I chose to do it through iTunes.

The other decision I had to make was to do a “restore” or set it up “as a new phone.” A “restore” would mean that my NEW phone would look exactly like my OLD phone, with all the tweaks and personalizations in place. My apps would be organized the same, my ringtones would be the same, etc. etc. As nice at that sounds, I could also use a housephonecleaning, and by setting it up as “new” I would be building it up app by app, tweak by tweak, clean and tidy.

I decided to go with the “restore”. Me = Lazy.

Decisions made, it was time to begin.

I turned on the iPhone.

It greeted me with a black and white screen, with “iPhone” on it.

Step by step, VERY clearly, it took me from selection to selection. Select language, enable location, etc. I never felt uneasy with a choice or questioned what I should do. It was all very clear.

It told me when to plug into iTunes.

When the screen came up on iTunes (once the iPhone was plugged in) I was given the choice of “restore” or “new phone”. I chose restore, and the iPhone and iTunes played together nicely for about 40 minutes. When they were done, I unplugged and admired my new iPhone!

Oh… wait. I hadn’t activated it. Whoops. What now?

I referred back to those directions, and AT&T said that the phone could be activated by either going on-line or calling a number.

I chose on-line. I carefully used the address that AT&T provided, but it simply did not work. I tried several times. Nothing. I didn’t panic, because I knew that all I had to do was to take the phone into an AT&T store the next day and they would do it.

But I decided to try the other method, by calling the phone number supplied by AT&T. This was easy and very clear. I was asked by a robot for the number of the phone I was calling about (I gave them the phone number of my OLD phone that I wanted moved to my NEW phone).

Then they asked for my zip code and the last four numbers of my social security number. Once they had that information, the robot-lady told me that I was done. I was instructed to turn the phone off for 5 minutes, and when I turned it back on, I would be activated. I did exactly that …. and all is well.

Success! The new iPhone is set up and activated. And in spite of all my fears, it really wasn’t difficult at all. 🙂


Note: I discovered that after the “restore” I needed to reset my passwords for email, reset the device lock, and reset my voicemail password, but so far other settings appear intact.


4 thoughts on “My Experience As a Regular Person Setting Up the New iPhone 5

  1. All I can say is wow. We still haven’t got our new phones connected up because our supplier couldn’t connect, and told us to go to the nearest service centre – an hour away!,
    There are all sorts of more exciting things that i end up doing instead!

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