Apple Stuck Apologizing For AT&T Yet Again With A $30 iTunes Credit

love-story-posterWe’ve received a few tips of people saying they’ve gotten an email from Apple offering them a $30 iTunes Store credit due to the problems activating the new iPhone 3G S. Apple claims it is still working with AT&T to resolve the issue that has caused some new iPhones to still not be activated 2 days after the launch of the device. And it warns that it may be another 48 hours before it’s resolved. For those affected, check your inbox Monday for the $30 credit.

To me, this is yet another indication of why Apple needs to move away from its AT&T exclusivity. While this year’s activation fiasco isn’t nearly as bad as last year’s nightmare, it’s still pretty bad considering that most of the iPhone 3G S orders were done via pre-order this time around. So AT&T knew what it was getting into ahead of time — and still couldn’t handle it. Then of course there’s the hilarious fact that MMS is not ready to go in the United States despite being launched on the device in 20+ other countries. And the same is true for tethering. Both are expected sometime later this summer.

Oh, and the iPhone 3G S can handle faster data speeds then the iPhone 3G (up to 7.2 Mbps now), but that doesn’t matter because AT&T’s network can’t do the same yet — and may not be able to in most places for a couple of years.

AT&T tried to do the right thing by offering some existing iPhone customers full subsidies for the new iPhone, but that was only those paying a large amount of money each month. It really should have offered it to all existing customers, just to rope them in for another 2 years of service because I’m betting that when its exclusive deal is up next year, Apple is going to ask to starting seeing other carriers.

Anyone who saw the WWDC keynote (now available online), clearly heard the jeers and boos from the crowd whenever one of the Apple execs had to say that AT&T wasn’t yet ready to launch one of the new iPhone features. You can be sure Apple heard those too — and that it wasn’t happy to have to say such things during a keynote in which the majority of those in the audience were AT&T iPhone customers.

Find the email below:

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.

Apple Online Store Team