So the magic day has arrived … I’m out of contract on my iPhone 3G *deep joy*

Time to change to a better value tariff so off I headed to O2 in Bolton. I knew what I wanted was a tariff called Simplicity 20 for iPhone … if only acquiring it had been simple. Sadly, it was a complete disaster, for the full horror of the day take a listen to MacBites episode 40.

The store staff had clearly had no training in what was available to cater for the specific needs of iPhone customers. A glaring omission given that all the customers who purchased an iPhone 3G on the day of release are out of contract this month. The staff were all most helpful and cordial but this didn’t translate into a smooth transaction when they were unaware of the difference between a Simplicity tariff and a Simplicity for iPhone tariff.

For the record this is the difference:

Simplicity (During January promotion) – £20

  • 700 Free voice minutes (100 minutes more than usual)
  • 700 Free text messages (100 texts more than usual)
  • 1 free bolt-on (they recommend unlimited internet)
  • No visual voice mail
  • No free wifi

Simplicity (After January promotion ends) – £20

  • 600 Free voice minutes
  • 600 Free text messages
  • 1 free bolt-on (they recommend unlimited internet)
  • No visual voice mail
  • No free wifi

Simplicity 20 for iPhone – £20

  • 600 Free voice minutes
  • 1200 Free text messages
  • 2 free bolt-ons (they recommend unlimited internet and unlimited wifi)
  • Includes visual voice mail

The Best Way to proceed?

From my experiences I’d by-pass the stores, they don’t seem to have a clue what is the best option for iPhone customers coming out of contract, and call O2 directly. If given a choice, which you should be if ringing via your iPhone, select the option to speak to the cancellations department. The option actually connects you to a department called Retentions who seem to be the only people at O2 who have any knowledge of the existence of the iPhone version of the Simplicity tariff.

Tell the Retentions department you want to switch to Simplicity 20 for iPhone with 600 free minutes, 1200 free texts, 2 bolt-ons and visual voice mail. If they deny all knowledge of its existence ask to speak to a supervisor and/or show them this screen capture of my O2 account … it really exists!!

My O2 account page showing that I really do have a Simplicity for iPhone contract

You might have to wait 24 hours for everything to be activated and you might have to manually reconfigure your settings. One of the side effects of changing tariffs was that the phone reset itself and failed to connect to the 3G network. This was easily rectified by entering the following settings into the General > Network > Cellular Data Network of the phone:

Correct settings for iPhone functionality on the Simplicity for iPhone contract

The only other gotcha I encountered was having to set Visual Voice Mail up again from scratch but this shouldn’t be necessary if O2 transfer you to the correct tariff in the first place. Being without my visual voice mail made me realize that it was a feature of the iPhone that I had greatly under-appreciated … a mistake I won’t make again 😉

Visual voice mail doesn't work with the default Simplicity tariff

Good luck with your tariff transfers and I’d love to hear how you get on so be sure to leave me a comment below!