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Re-activating a SIM card--what a pain!



 
 
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  #1  
Old June 22nd 04, 05:23 PM
MS
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default Re-activating a SIM card--what a pain!

I misplaced my main T-Mobile phone last Wednesday, and still have not found
it. Fortunately, I have a spare phone and spare SIM card. (Unfortunately,
you cannot have two SIM cards activated on the same number at the same time,
so the spare was not activated.)

Friday evening, still not having found my main phone, I called TM customer
service, and asked that they change the activation on my phone to the SIM
card in the spare phone. (When I find the main phone I can just switch the
cards, I wouldn't have to change the activation again.) I read the rep the
number on the phone, gave her all the info to verify that it was really me
who was calling, etc.

She said that, although a new SIM card can be activated immediately, since I
had used and deactivated this card before (for the same reason), it would
take 24 to 72 hours to re-activate.

I was aghast. I had already spent over 48 hours without cell phone usage,
and now hoped that I would be able to use the spare right away. I had spent
money on buying a second phone and SIM card from T-Mobile, I felt I should
be able to switch between them without such a long wait in between. She said
there was nothing she could do to speed up the process.

I kept checking the phone, hoping it would work sooner rather than later.

Last night (Monday) the 72 hours passed, and the spare phone still wasn't
working, still getting the message "Unregistered Sim". I called customer
service again. This rep said this SIM card (after reading her the number
again) was still listed as deactivated. I explained to her that I had put in
the request to re-activate the card over 72 hours ago. She spent a long time
away from the phone, came back, said she saw the memo that I had called to
have it re-activated, but it didn't look like it had been done. She said the
only thing she could do was to put in the request again. I asked if it could
be rushed, since I had already waited over 72 hours. She said there was no
way she could rush it, all she could do was to submit the order. I asked her
why it hadn't been re-activated yet, when I had put in the request more than
three days ago. She said she had no idea, and had no way to find that out.

I find this outrageous! I paid for a spare phone and SIM card, I think I
should be able to switch between them without having to wait for days after
putting in the request to do so. To me the minimum stated time of 24 hours
is way too long, and now it's gone over the max of 72! Have others
experienced this? Anyone had experience of this with other carriers? Do they
all take so long to change activations? Why should it take so long, if they
can activate a new SIM card immediately? (Of course they will want to verify
that it is a legitimate request, but the info I gave to the rep on the phone
the first time verified that it was I who called. Also, they should be able
to check quickly that this card had been activated before to my name and
cell number.) What is causing the slowdown?

If I called again and asked to speak to a supervisor, would that help?
Rather than just putting in the request again on the computer, couldn't thy
get on the phone and call the department that does the reactivations, and
ask what the hell is going on, why is this taking so long? Is there a
particular number I could call where I might get better service.

It sure would be nice if one could keep more than one SIM card activated on
the same line. (Of course, I would never use both at the same time.) If that
were the case, my spare phone would have been ready to use right away. Also,
for people who have more than one phone (perhaps an Air Card as well, Pocket
PC Phone, etc.), and switch between them due to different features,
different form factors, etc., it sure would be nice to be able to switch
without swapping the card back and forth. Do any carriers in the US allow
this, more than one card to be activated on the same line? I believe I read
something here once that it's possible to clone a SIM card, so that both the
cloned card and the original are activated to the same number. Is that
difficult to do? How would one do that? (I'm getting fed up with what I'm
going through now with re-activation.)


  #2  
Old June 22nd 04, 05:58 PM
Piotr Nowak
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

i'm suprised they let you reactivate used sim...
afaik they don't do that ;-)


--


Pete


  #3  
Old June 22nd 04, 06:21 PM
MS
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

They do, I've done it before also. But they take wayyyy toooo lonnnnggggg!

"Piotr Nowak" wrote in message
. ..
i'm suprised they let you reactivate used sim...
afaik they don't do that ;-)


--


Pete




  #4  
Old June 23rd 04, 12:42 AM
Jim
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Posts: n/a
Default

" MS" wrote in message ...
I misplaced my main T-Mobile phone last Wednesday, and still have not found
it. Fortunately, I have a spare phone and spare SIM card. (Unfortunately,
you cannot have two SIM cards activated on the same number at the same time,
so the spare was not activated.)


You misplaced the handset, yet TMobile is supposed to drop everything
to deal with your mistake?

It isnt TMobile that sets this standard... It is basic GSM... NO GSM
system will allow 2 SIMS to be active on same account anywhere in
world. The technology has built in safeguards that preclude haveing 2
SIM for security and reliability.. It isnt like making a second key
and getting two cars with same door keys and same ignition keys

Friday evening, still not having found my main phone, I called TM customer
service, and asked that they change the activation on my phone to the SIM
card in the spare phone. (When I find the main phone I can just switch the
cards, I wouldn't have to change the activation again.) I read the rep the
number on the phone, gave her all the info to verify that it was really me
who was calling, etc.

She said that, although a new SIM card can be activated immediately, since I
had used and deactivated this card before (for the same reason), it would
take 24 to 72 hours to re-activate.


There is the point... actually two points...

a. Technically they are not allowed/obligated to reactivate a used SIm
except for certain specific situations.

b. If you deactivated it, how is it T-Mobile's fault it was active? If
you wished to keep it as a "spare" SIM, why did you wait until you
"needed" it to attempt to get it reactivated?

I was aghast. I had already spent over 48 hours without cell phone usage,
and now hoped that I would be able to use the spare right away. I had spent
money on buying a second phone and SIM card from T-Mobile, I felt I should
be able to switch between them without such a long wait in between. She said
there was nothing she could do to speed up the process.


If you were THAT in need of service, and you were advised IF possible
woudl take taht long.. why did you not just go to a TMobile Store,
purchase a new SIM... and then when other SIM was (if it was)
released, you'd still have a spare SIM

I kept checking the phone, hoping it would work sooner rather than later.

Last night (Monday) the 72 hours passed, and the spare phone still wasn't
working, still getting the message "Unregistered Sim". I called customer
service again. This rep said this SIM card (after reading her the number
again) was still listed as deactivated. I explained to her that I had put in
the request to re-activate the card over 72 hours ago. She spent a long time
away from the phone, came back, said she saw the memo that I had called to
have it re-activated, but it didn't look like it had been done. She said the
only thing she could do was to put in the request again. I asked if it could
be rushed, since I had already waited over 72 hours. She said there was no
way she could rush it, all she could do was to submit the order. I asked her
why it hadn't been re-activated yet, when I had put in the request more than
three days ago. She said she had no idea, and had no way to find that out.

I find this outrageous! I paid for a spare phone and SIM card, I think I
should be able to switch between them without having to wait for days after
putting in the request to do so. To me the minimum stated time of 24 hours
is way too long, and now it's gone over the max of 72!


There are various things that must be checked and verified, and if it
takes 3 weeks, and they told you it would... Explain to me, since you
are the all knwoing expert, what steps can they remove to reactivate a
SIM that would reduce this time to your standards?


Have others
experienced this? Anyone had experience of this with other carriers? Do they
all take so long to change activations? Why should it take so long, if they
can activate a new SIM card immediately? (Of course they will want to verify
that it is a legitimate request, but the info I gave to the rep on the phone
the first time verified that it was I who called. Also, they should be able
to check quickly that this card had been activated before to my name and
cell number.) What is causing the slowdown?


You specified above should take no more then 24 hours.. so you need to
answer this yourself...

If I called again and asked to speak to a supervisor, would that help?
Rather than just putting in the request again on the computer, couldn't thy
get on the phone and call the department that does the reactivations, and
ask what the hell is going on, why is this taking so long? Is there a
particular number I could call where I might get better service.


No a supervisor cannot change anything... There are only 2 ways to get
a SIM reactivated (if it is eligile and able to be reactivated)... The
regular method is to file an iternal form, which goes to a special
group (no external phone number or email address is available) for
review and action...

I dont know if this is one grizzled old man in a basement of one of
the call centers, or 15 dedicated but overworked techs... It just
is...

Only number to call IS CC...

It sure would be nice if one could keep more than one SIM card activated on
the same line. (Of course, I would never use both at the same time.)


Do some search for GSM basics, then some back and say that again... It
is not possible, unless one is hacking the system...

If that
were the case, my spare phone would have been ready to use right away.


How about hanging on a little closer to your phone so you dont
misplace it... I say that noting you didnt sya it was burgled or
otherwise stolen...

Also,
for people who have more than one phone (perhaps an Air Card as well, Pocket
PC Phone, etc.), and switch between them due to different features,
different form factors, etc., it sure would be nice to be able to switch
without swapping the card back and forth.


It aint happenin'

Do any carriers in the US allow
this, more than one card to be activated on the same line?


No GSM system in the world CAN or will allow more then one sim on one
number...

I believe I read
something here once that it's possible to clone a SIM card, so that both the
cloned card and the original are activated to the same number. Is that
difficult to do? How would one do that? (I'm getting fed up with what I'm
going through now with re-activation.)


Have you got about 250,000 dollars to buy the necessary equipment to
make a true and maybe functional copy of a SIM?
  #5  
Old June 23rd 04, 12:58 AM
Andy M --Tampa Bay--
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

Jim wrote:
Do any carriers in the US allow
this, more than one card to be activated on the same line?


No GSM system in the world CAN or will allow more then one sim on one
number...


Quite correct, Jim. You can have two numbers on one SIM (orange or vodafone
in UK have this "Line2" feature) but you can't have two SIMs with the same
number.


  #6  
Old June 23rd 04, 07:51 AM
MS
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Jim" wrote in message
om...
" MS" wrote in message

...
I misplaced my main T-Mobile phone last Wednesday, and still have not

found
it. Fortunately, I have a spare phone and spare SIM card.

(Unfortunately,
you cannot have two SIM cards activated on the same number at the same

time,
so the spare was not activated.)


You misplaced the handset, yet TMobile is supposed to drop everything
to deal with your mistake?


You seem pretty hostile, Jim. Had a bad day?

Yes, I spent money (to T-Mobile) on a spare phone and spare SIM card for
such eventualities, so I do expect them to deal with such a SIM card change
promptly, not to take several days.


It isnt TMobile that sets this standard... It is basic GSM... NO GSM
system will allow 2 SIMS to be active on same account anywhere in
world. The technology has built in safeguards that preclude haveing 2
SIM for security and reliability.. It isnt like making a second key
and getting two cars with same door keys and same ignition keys


However, I can easily get two keys for the same car, no? In fact, I got two
when I bought the car. Either key will work at any time.

b. If you deactivated it, how is it T-Mobile's fault it was active? If
you wished to keep it as a "spare" SIM, why did you wait until you
"needed" it to attempt to get it reactivated?


I didn't say it was anyone's fault it wasn't active. However, according to
the rules of SIM cards, that you just delineated yourself (not quoted here)
(although I wish it was otherwise) you can only have one SIM card activated
on one phone line at a time. So of course the spare SIM wasn't already
activated. Of course I didn't try to get it reactivated until I needed it,
when I couldn't find my other phone that had an activated SIM card in it. I
don't get your point at all.

If you were THAT in need of service, and you were advised IF possible
woudl take taht long.. why did you not just go to a TMobile Store,
purchase a new SIM... and then when other SIM was (if it was)
released, you'd still have a spare SIM


Because, it was already evening, the stores were closed, I had already
bought a spare SIM card, they would charge $20 for a third, and I was hoping
it would activate sooner rather than later. Little did I know that after 3
days it still would not be activated.

There are various things that must be checked and verified, and if it
takes 3 weeks, and they told you it would... Explain to me, since you
are the all knwoing expert, what steps can they remove to reactivate a
SIM that would reduce this time to your standards?


Now can you quote where I said I was an "all-knowing expert"? I never said
anything of the kind. Now, could you please delineate what are all those
steps that you are implying must be done to reactivate a SIM? Please list
all the steps, and why it should take several days to complete them.


How about hanging on a little closer to your phone so you dont
misplace it... I say that noting you didnt sya it was burgled or
otherwise stolen...


Thanks for the advice, Mommy (or Daddy). Yes, I'm sorry I'm not perfect like
you are. I was very overtired and overworked last week, and I seem to have
misplaced my phone, and have not yet found it. I wish I could be perfect
like you, and never misplace anything. No, I don't think it was stolen. I
checked usage, and there were no calls on the phone after the 15th of June.
The first day I couldn't find it was the 16th.

Have you got about 250,000 dollars to buy the necessary equipment to
make a true and maybe functional copy of a SIM?


Nope I don't. If I had that much money, I sure wouldn't spend it on that in
any case, and I couldn't imagine anyone doing so. I have no idea about that
(sim card cloning), just read a mention about it somewhere (probably on this
newsgroup), and was just asking. I don't pretend to know about things that I
don't know about.

Now, take a break Jim, and don't be so quick to get angry with people who
write here.


  #7  
Old June 23rd 04, 08:32 AM
MS
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

UPDATE---

This afternoon I was by a T-Mobile store, and frustrated that the phone
still wasn't working, went in and told a rep my story. This guy was really
nice, and gave me a new SIM card without charging anything for it (although
at that point I probably would have paid the $20 for one), and he activated
it right from the store. (I didn't know it could be done that way, without
calling CS. Hadn't seen that done before. Certainly more convenient.) He
said the activation would start working within two hours.

I thought however, that I probably still should call CS, and tell them about
it, to cancel the re-activation of the older spare card, since I now had a
new card that had just been activated. I called CS from the store. I had to
explain the story to the rep on the phone a few times before she understood
it. Then she put me on hold for a long time. When she returned she said she
had no way to cancel the requested re-activation of the old card, but she
thought that it wouldn't go through due to the new card having been
activated.

Within about 20 minutes the new card was working, and I thought the story
was over. I was happy the rep I spoke to in that store had been so nice, to
give me the new card and activate it.

Now tonight, however, I cannot get any signal on the phone. Rather than
seeing "T-Mobile" on the screen, I just see the date. If I try to make a
call, it immediately says "Call Failed", without any dialing, etc. If I try
to connect to T-Zones, after a long time trying to connect, it says "Network
Not Responding". Now, I know this could happen if I am at a place where
there is not a good signal. However, there is usually an excellent TM signal
at my house. It might be that there is just a poor signal here tonight.
But--I am wondering if it might be a SIM card problem again. What if the
activation had changed from the new card I put in and activated today, to
the old spare card, which I had called to re-activate last Friday night, and
again Monday night? Fortunately I saved the old card, so I swapped it back
in. It didn't work either. So now I'm worrying--what about if in the
mix-up-- both cards have been de-activated, and neither re-activated? I hope
it's just a poor signal tonight, and that it will work fine tomorrow. I
hope................. (Not eager to have to call CS again tomorrow, and ask
them to activate one of the cards, and wait several days again!! :-( )
We'll see.


  #8  
Old June 23rd 04, 08:38 AM
MS
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default


"Jim" wrote in message
om...
No a supervisor cannot change anything... There are only 2 ways to get
a SIM reactivated (if it is eligile and able to be reactivated)... The
regular method is to file an iternal form, which goes to a special
group (no external phone number or email address is available) for
review and action...


Well, don't you think that something is wrong with such a setup, that it is
impossible for a CS rep to contact this "special group" of reactivators, no
phone number, no e-mail address, nothing but that form? There must be a
phone somewhere in the office of that "special group". Something is wrong
with CS not being able to contact them, to inquire about a problem, etc. I'm
not blaming the CS rep for that, but something is wrong with that overall
setup, if that group cannot be contacted.

You write above "there are 2 ways to get a SIM reactivated". Then you
explained one way. What is the second way you were referring to?


  #9  
Old June 23rd 04, 03:32 PM
Jim
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

" MS" wrote in message ...
"Jim" wrote in message
om...
" MS" wrote in message

...
I misplaced my main T-Mobile phone last Wednesday, and still have not

found
it. Fortunately, I have a spare phone and spare SIM card.

(Unfortunately,
you cannot have two SIM cards activated on the same number at the same

time,
so the spare was not activated.)


You misplaced the handset, yet TMobile is supposed to drop everything
to deal with your mistake?


You seem pretty hostile, Jim. Had a bad day?


Noe just sick of whiners...

Yes, I spent money (to T-Mobile) on a spare phone and spare SIM card for
such eventualities, so I do expect them to deal with such a SIM card change
promptly, not to take several days.


YOU had the other SIM activated, then deactivated... Not a simple
update SIM issue...


It isnt TMobile that sets this standard... It is basic GSM... NO GSM
system will allow 2 SIMS to be active on same account anywhere in
world. The technology has built in safeguards that preclude haveing 2
SIM for security and reliability.. It isnt like making a second key
and getting two cars with same door keys and same ignition keys


However, I can easily get two keys for the same car, no? In fact, I got two
when I bought the car. Either key will work at any time.


That isnt what I said.. read...

b. If you deactivated it, how is it T-Mobile's fault it was active? If
you wished to keep it as a "spare" SIM, why did you wait until you
"needed" it to attempt to get it reactivated?


I didn't say it was anyone's fault it wasn't active. However, according to
the rules of SIM cards, that you just delineated yourself (not quoted here)
(although I wish it was otherwise) you can only have one SIM card activated
on one phone line at a time. So of course the spare SIM wasn't already
activated. Of course I didn't try to get it reactivated until I needed it,
when I couldn't find my other phone that had an activated SIM card in it. I
don't get your point at all.


Again.. read... I stated why did you wait to have SIM released so
could be resued until you needed it.. If (as you stated) had
previosuly activated, and wanted to keep it as spare, prudent person
would have checked and requested SIM to be available before it was
needed... Then woudl be matter of simply changing SIM.. not going
through reactivation process...

If you were THAT in need of service, and you were advised IF possible
woudl take taht long.. why did you not just go to a TMobile Store,
purchase a new SIM... and then when other SIM was (if it was)
released, you'd still have a spare SIM


Because, it was already evening, the stores were closed, I had already
bought a spare SIM card, they would charge $20 for a third, and I was hoping
it would activate sooner rather than later. Little did I know that after 3
days it still would not be activated.


Oh my goodness... The world revolves around you, and it is a shame
that late at night, your phone couldnt ring...

Charge you for it? So what.. they arent free in geenral, and you could
always go thru reactivation (as prudent person who stated liek to keep
second SIM available)... Stores werent open next day? You live in some
location with REALLY strange blue laws?

There are various things that must be checked and verified, and if it
takes 3 weeks, and they told you it would... Explain to me, since you
are the all knwoing expert, what steps can they remove to reactivate a
SIM that would reduce this time to your standards?


Now can you quote where I said I was an "all-knowing expert"? I never said
anything of the kind. Now, could you please delineate what are all those
steps that you are implying must be done to reactivate a SIM? Please list
all the steps, and why it should take several days to complete them.


Your attitude.. and statements like it shouldnt take more then 24
hours...

I cant list them, I dont have access to that information. The
infomration I do have includes them checkign your account for history,
checkign the SIM to be sure it isnt in use, or hasnt been involved in
anything nefarious (including verfing wasnt stolen from store, etc.)

Then when they get thru all of that.. then they see if the system will
LET them restore it...

How about hanging on a little closer to your phone so you dont
misplace it... I say that noting you didnt sya it was burgled or
otherwise stolen...


Thanks for the advice, Mommy (or Daddy). Yes, I'm sorry I'm not perfect like
you are. I was very overtired and overworked last week, and I seem to have
misplaced my phone, and have not yet found it. I wish I could be perfect
like you, and never misplace anything. No, I don't think it was stolen. I
checked usage, and there were no calls on the phone after the 15th of June.
The first day I couldn't find it was the 16th.


So it isnt "Joe Robber" or "Bernie Burglar" but your own issue...

Yes, I do misplace things... But having worked as a mechanic, and
engineer, I learned to maintain close contact with tools and things I
do need that are that important...

Have you got about 250,000 dollars to buy the necessary equipment to
make a true and maybe functional copy of a SIM?


Nope I don't. If I had that much money, I sure wouldn't spend it on that in
any case, and I couldn't imagine anyone doing so. I have no idea about that
(sim card cloning), just read a mention about it somewhere (probably on this
newsgroup), and was just asking. I don't pretend to know about things that I
don't know about.

Now, take a break Jim, and don't be so quick to get angry with people who
write here.


Im not "quick to anger"... Ive worked in customer service environments
and you are making a whole lot of assumptions...

Sure, maybe there is a better way to process SIM resuse, but Im sure
it isnt a priority process...

I have close friends who work in the industry who advise me and swap
war stories... and I do know a fair bit about electronics...

Just gets my goat when folks take a postion that they appear to claim
blamless, but the whole company is agaisnt them "working" the
system...
  #10  
Old June 23rd 04, 03:48 PM
gopi
external usenet poster
 
Posts: n/a
Default

(Jim) wrote in message . com...
" MS" wrote in message ...
It isnt TMobile that sets this standard... It is basic GSM... NO GSM
system will allow 2 SIMS to be active on same account anywhere in
world. The technology has built in safeguards that preclude haveing 2
SIM for security and reliability.. It isnt like making a second key
and getting two cars with same door keys and same ignition keys


'cept that you're wrong, you _can_ have two SIMs on the same number.
Or three. O2 in Germany lets you get more than one SIM on the same
account for a one time charge of Eu25 per SIM. Incoming calls and SMSs
will onlly go to one, but you can set it up to first ring one, then
the other. You can also dial codes on the phone to switch between
them. You can at any point pick up either phone and dial.

On the subject of car keys, it's actually somewhat more complicated...
Modern car keys have an RFID tag built in to the key, so the car
computer must be programmed with the RFID serial number of the key
before it will work.

Keyless entry systems are worse than that. The code from the key
changes every time you press unlock. The car computer keeps track of
the last valid sequence that it received, and it knows what the next
in sequence will be. The car calculates the next N (where N is
something like 10, or 20, maybe more) numbers, and will work with any
of them.

In other words, if you press the "unlock" button on your car remote
too many times, it'll end up too far along in the sequence, and it
won't work. There's a special technique you can use to resequence the
car to your key. I've actually tried this personally and verified that
it does work like that.

The purpose of this is to stop somebody from listening in and sending
the unlock code again. Since each unlock code only works once, you
can't replay them. The car computer must know the serial numbers for
the keys, and has a limit of how many keys it can handle. Some can
only handle one or two.

Modern garage door openers also work on the same principles.

b. If you deactivated it, how is it T-Mobile's fault it was active? If
you wished to keep it as a "spare" SIM, why did you wait until you
"needed" it to attempt to get it reactivated?


....because he can only have one SIM activated at a time?

There are various things that must be checked and verified, and if it
takes 3 weeks, and they told you it would... Explain to me, since you
are the all knwoing expert, what steps can they remove to reactivate a
SIM that would reduce this time to your standards?


I think he'd prefer they skip the "sitting around doing nothing" and
the "dropping the request on the floor and ignoring it" steps.
 




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