Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

Turned Off iPhone Gets $4800 Bill from AT&T

CmdrTaco posted about 7 years ago | from the gotta-hate-when-that-happens dept.

Handhelds 951

Tech.Luver writes "Jay Levy says he has been stung by Apple's iPhone pact with AT&T after he took an iPhone on a Mediterranean cruise. They didn't use their phones, but when they got back they had a 54-page monthly bill of nearly $4,800 from AT&T Wireless. The problem was that their three iPhones were racking up a bill for data charges using foreign phone charges. The iPhone regularly updates e-mail, even while it's off, so that all the messages will be available when the user turns it on. ""

cancel ×

951 comments

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

frosty piss (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20537673)

cookin up a mug

ihpones (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20537679)

but it was off? fucken mac

Re:ihpones (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20537711)

Consider it a faggot tax

Re:ihpones (0, Flamebait)

altoz (653655) | about 7 years ago | (#20537783)

yet another reason not to get this hyped up gadget. you can bet that no business person is going to buy this after this gets publicized.

Re:ihpones (5, Informative)

evilgrug (915703) | about 7 years ago | (#20538023)

Hopefully "after this gets publicised" more people will bother to read the manual [apple.com] which clearly states in Chapter 2 "The Basics" (page 14) how to turn the iPod completely off.

Re:ihpones (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20538033)

No, people just have to learn the difference between "sleep" and "power off".

Off means off (5, Insightful)

Alex777 (1113887) | about 7 years ago | (#20537681)

This is why things should actually be OFF when you turn them off. What if it interferes with hospital equipment like other cells, even if it's off?

Re:Off means off (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20537697)

Day 1

Mommy, I am only 8 inches long, but I have all my organs. I love the sound of your voice. Every time I hear it, I wave my arms and legs. The sound of your heart beat is my favorite lullaby.

Day 2

Mommy, today I learned how to suck my thumb. If you could see me, you could definitely tell that I am a baby. I'm not big enough to survive outside my home though. It is so nice and warm in here.

Day 3

You know what Mommy, I'm a girl!! I hope that makes you happy. I always want you to be happy. I don't like it when you cry. You sound so sad. It makes me sad too, and I cry with you even though you can't hear me.

Day 4

Mommy, my hair is starting to grow. It is very short and fine, but I will have a lot of it. I spend a lot of my time exercising. I can turn my head and curl my fingers and toes, and stretch my arms and legs. I am becoming quite good at it too.

Day 5

You went to the doctor today. Mommy, he lied to you. He said that I'm not a baby. I am a baby Mommy, your baby. I think and feel. Mommy, what's abortion?

Day 6

I can hear that doctor again. I don't like him. He seems cold and heartless. Something is intruding my home. The doctor called it a needle. Mommy what is it? It burns! Please make him stop! I can't get away from it! Mommy!! HELP me!! No . . .

Day 7

Mommy, I am okay. I am in Jesus's arms. he is holding me. He told me about abortion. Why didn't you want me Mommy?

One more heart that was stopped. Two more eyes that will never see. Two more hands that will never touch. Two more legs that will never run. One more mouth that will never speak.

REPOST THIS IF U HATE ABORTION
[edit] Epilogue

Day 7581 Mommy, I'm a stupid crackhead negro from the ghetto. I play with guns and drugs! I killed an innocent person with a stray bullet during a gang war. Now the taxpayers will provide me with free food and housing for the rest of my life. Thanks for not aborting me, mom.
[edit] English-Japanese-English Abortion

Mommy of day 1, I am 8 inch length which passes, but it possesses my organ everything. I love the sound of your voice. In the degree where I inquire about that, I shake my arm and the foot. Sound of your heart beat is the baby sitter of my taste.

Mommy of day 2, present I learned the method of inhaling my thumb. When it is possible to meet to me, in order for I to be the baby completely, it is possible to say. But as for me outside my house it continues, it is not sufficiently large. Here where that is splendid very, is warm. As for girl what kind of Mommy, me!

Day 3 you have known whether so it is,! I make thing and happiness desire. We want being happy always depending upon me. I when shouting, do not like that. You sound very sadly. That makes me sad excessively, to inquire about me although it is not possible, I shout you.

Mommy of day 4 has started being brought up my hair. That is short very, is good, but it is many that in me. I use the motion of many my times. I turn my head, my finger and the toe the cirque is possible and extend my arm and the foot. I become that hugely and have become good.

Today went in the day 5 doctor. Mommy, there was he in you. He said that I am not the baby. I Mommy of the baby, am your baby. I think, feel. Is Mommy no interruption?

Day 6 as for me it can hear that doctor for the second time. I do not like him. He is cool, it seems that is non- human feelings. Something has pushed my house. The doctor called that the needle. No Mommy where is that? That burns! Stop in him! As for me then it cannot obtain! Mommy! ! Me! Help! Calling obtaining. . .

Mommy of day 7, I am good. As for me there is a yes Christ's arm. He is my possession ones. He concerning interruption called to me. Why you didn't think that Mommy we want me? One many center which it stops. Two many eyes which are not seen under any condition. Two many hands which are not touched under any condition. 2 it does not move under any condition many feet. One many mouth which you do not speak under any condition.

If REPOST this U hatred interruption
[edit] Fursecution

Day 1

Mommy, I am only 8 inches long, but I have all my fur. I love the sound of our cats getting castrated. Every time I hear it, I wave my paws. The sound of our dog barking is my favourite lullaby.

Day 2

Mommy, today I learned how to suck my PENIS. If you could see me, you could definitely tell that I am a faggot. I'm not big enough to satisfy myself though. It is so nice and warm in here.

Day 3

You know what Mommy, I'm a Fox!! I hope that makes you happy. I always want you to be happy. I don't like it when you wimper. You sound so un-furry. It makes me sad too, and I wimper with you even though you can't hear me.

Day 4

Mommy, my fur is starting to grow. It is very short and fine, but I will have a lot of it. I spend a lot of my time sucking myself off. I can turn my head and cum in my eyes and stretch my PENIS. I am becoming quite good at it too.

Day 5

You went to a /b/tard today. Mommy, he lied to you. He said that I'm not a Fox. I am a Fox Mommy, your Foxy. I think and feel. Mommy, what's abortion?

Day 6

I can hear that /b/tard again. I don't like him. He seems cold and like a fursecutor. Something is intruding my home. The /b/tard called it a PENIS. Mommy it's tearing me apart! It burns! Please make him stop! I can't get away from it! Mommy!! HELP me!! No . . .

Day 7

Mommy, I'm burning. Now I can yiff in hell, in the fiery pits of eternal damnation. Why didn't you want me Mommy?

One more furfag that was stopped. Two more balls that will never be able to reproduce. Two more paws that will never touch. A tail that will never wag. A PENIS that will never yiff.

REPOST THIS IF YOU HATE FURFAGS
[edit]

Re:Off means off (4, Insightful)

Mr. Underbridge (666784) | about 7 years ago | (#20537705)

This is why things should actually be OFF when you turn them off. What if it interferes with hospital equipment like other cells, even if it's off?

I'd say hospital equipment shouldn't malfunction when presented with interference on a widely used spectrum, but that's just me.

Re:Off means off (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20537763)

Thank god it is just you.

Re:Off means off (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20537765)

most equipment today doesn't

Re:Off means off (5, Insightful)

cnettel (836611) | about 7 years ago | (#20537811)

That's easy for many things, but not so easy when you are doing non-invasive monitoring of electric signals from the body. A false alarm would still cause problems, and I can understand why you want that type of equipment to be sensitive to the limit that it can detect spurious signals.

Re:Off means off (2, Informative)

aug24 (38229) | about 7 years ago | (#20538091)

...and that's why it should be done in a shielded room, not why every other device on the planet should be off/shielded. What happens if someone walks by outside the window with an unshielded device?

(I had friends at uni who got interference from cars 200m away. They ran their experiment at 3am instead. My point being, there is always interference. You shouldn't try to legislate against it.)

J.

Re:Off means off (1, Offtopic)

ThinkingInBinary (899485) | about 7 years ago | (#20537831)

I'd say hospital equipment shouldn't malfunction when presented with interference on a widely used spectrum, but that's just me.

Yes, but... 1. Medical equipment manufacturers have a lot of things to worry about already. They have tons of hoops to jump through to make sure that it never endangers people under normal operating conditions. The equipment already costs a ton, because of the amount of time that manufacturers have to sink into things like FDA approval. (I'm not saying this is a bad thing, but just that it does drive up costs.) Cell phones are the last thing they want to have to worry about. 2. Even if it was well-shielded, you'd have the airline problem. Hospitals, afraid that older or badly-designed equipment would still be vulnerable, would still put up "Please turn off cell phones" signs, just to be safe.

I'm sure in the next decade or so, this problem will be corrected. But don't expect it to happen quickly, because I don't remember hearing about any incidents where a patient was actually harmed because a machine malfunctioned in real life. (Feel free to point them out if they have happened -- I haven't looked for them at all; I just assumed it would be a big enough deal that it would receive media coverage that I'd notice.)

Normally, it doesn't. (1)

DrYak (748999) | about 7 years ago | (#20537847)

hospital equipment shouldn't malfunction when presented with interference on a widely used spectrum


Normally it doesn't. Most critical equipement is designed to be solid.

*BUT* on the other hand, the designer didn't have the opportunity to run tests between their product and every fucking crazy stuff emitting radio-noise that a patient may try to subject it to.
Phone are forbidden to be on the safe side of things, not because all medical equipement is so sensitive that the whole hospital will crash if a GSM phone comes by.

(And sometimes, there are suprising interactions, like the iPods' touchwheel interfering with pacemakers)

On the other hand, that doesn't prevent the iPhone from having a mode where it is actually off.

Re:Off means off (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | about 7 years ago | (#20537889)

You mean even spectrums that aren't widely used right now that are going to be in 10 or 20 years?

Re:Off means off (2, Funny)

gardyloo (512791) | about 7 years ago | (#20537967)

Well, hospital equipment already racks up astounding charges. Maybe hospitals should start buying iDefibs and iProctoscopes. Sounds like iPhone owners will probably need both of those soon.

Re:Off means off (1, Offtopic)

AgentPaper (968688) | about 7 years ago | (#20538025)

You're right, it shouldn't, and the vast majority of modern healthcare equipment doesn't have such problems. However, there are still thousands of patients walking around with "legacy" implantable devices (pacers, ICDs, etc) that aren't RF-shielded, to say nothing of healthcare facilities still using older equipment that wasn't designed with today's RF environment in mind.

Then too, a lot of the "no cellular phones" strictures are there for convenience, not necessarily patient safety. Hospitals are built like very, very few modern buildings. They use massive amounts of brick, block and structural steel compared to a standard office building, and most rooms incorporate some form of RF or radiation shielding. End result: the only place you'll get a signal will be outside the building. (This is also why it's a gold-plated PITA to deploy a wireless network in a hospital - you have to install repeaters every thirty feet instead of every seventy or so, and you still wind up with signal problems.)

Re:Off means off (2, Interesting)

skeeto (1138903) | about 7 years ago | (#20538065)

I'd say hospital equipment shouldn't malfunction when presented with interference on a widely used spectrum, but that's just me.

Remember that intensity decreases proportionally to the inverse square. This means that after a not-so-far distance (such as the parking lot at the hospital), the intensity of the cell phone radiation decreases dramatically but will be very strong at close distances, such as in a waiting room at the hospital.

Ever hold a cell phone (not all do this) near a speaker and get blasted by loud buzzing noises? Notice that the speaker is fine when you move the cell phone away, say, 5 feet.

Re:Off means off (3, Insightful)

Kazymyr (190114) | about 7 years ago | (#20537789)

Better yet, how about airplanes? If it's not really off at any time, isn't it illegal to take an iphone on a flight?

Re:Off means off (1)

cforceleritas (1130793) | about 7 years ago | (#20537815)

Or what about "Flight Mode?" If there are no provisions for this situation on the iPhone then that is a serious design flaw. Maybe a third party coder could help save us!

Re:Off means off (4, Informative)

Rycross (836649) | about 7 years ago | (#20537927)

There is an airplane mode switch in the settings.

Re:Off means off (1)

somersault (912633) | about 7 years ago | (#20537969)

Where are you in our darkest hour, Geek-Chic-Man? Are you reading up on all the options you can configure on your Gentoo build? Are you low level formatting your iPod? Are you out getting your hair cut and hydrogen peroxide painted with a motif resembling a penguin eating an apple? Please help us!

Re:Off means off (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20537839)

"off" does, in fact, mean "off". this guy never turned his iphone off; he locked it. it's the same thing as closing your a clamshell-style phone vs. actually turning it off. this guy's only fault is not familiarizing himself with his equipment prior to taking it on a trip (yet another mouth-breather who would have been well-served by RTFM). if he had actually turned his iphone off or put it in airplane mode, he wouldn't have had these problems.

demanding that iphones actually be turned off when you lock them is short-sighted: if it were actually turned off, you'd be unable to receive phone calls, SMS messages, or IMs.

Re:Off means off (5, Insightful)

Ichelo (690294) | about 7 years ago | (#20537873)

http://www.newsday.com/business/ny-bzappl0908,0,29 29341.story?coll=ny_home_rail_headlines [newsday.com]

Levy said he didn't expect data transfer charges internationally because he believed the data network in Europe wasn't compatible with the iPhone. The Levys brought their phones with them for voice calls


I know the article says they were off, but it also says the took the phones for voice calls, so where they really off? or did they just not use the data part?

Nice in theory (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20537887)

But if phones were actually off when you turn them off then the government couldn't use them as a bug to listen in on your offline conversations.

If the government didn't watch you at all times like that, they wouldn't be able to stop you from doing something stupid before things got REALLY out of hand.

So thats why they should be on all the time....it is necessary to ensure that the government can be effective in its ongoing efforts to protect you from yourself.

Re:Off means off (0, Troll)

sogoodsofarsowhat (662830) | about 7 years ago | (#20537939)

He had it sleep with the display off...not actually off. The user here is an idiot and deserves what he gets. He probably also thinks that if he doesnt see any lights its off...its not...there is a specific turn off mode for the phone hold the sleep button for 3+seconds gets you an off screen. Idiot...and of course /. posting an idiots story as some sorta manifesto of why the iphone is evil.. Its not its jsut bad for idiotic people.

Re:Off means off (3, Insightful)

jrumney (197329) | about 7 years ago | (#20538101)

The user here is an idiot and deserves what he gets.

Really? So you think that $4800 is perfectly reasonable for taking your phone abroad for a month with the default settings as supplied by the phone company, and not actually using it at all?

Re:Off means off (1, Troll)

140Mandak262Jamuna (970587) | about 7 years ago | (#20537959)

And you can't even remove the batteries to make sure it stays off. Brilliant strategy Steve!

Re:Off means off (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20538053)

It wasn't off, he just had the screen locked.

Completely off there is nothing broadcast.

There is also airplane mode available to turn off radiating, and leave everything else working.

Re:Off means off (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20538075)

The iPhone can be shutdown or put to "sleep". If I understand correctly, shutdown is a complete shutoff whereas sleep blacks out the screen but continues to check email... Anybody been able to confirm if this guy actually turned off the phone? Seems likely he just put them to sleep...

Re:Off means off (5, Informative)

fredmosby (545378) | about 7 years ago | (#20538095)

You can actually turn an iPhone off. These people left their iPhones on standby and thought they were turned off. Just because the screen is black doesn't mean the device is off.

To turn it off all you have to do is hold down the standby button for a few seconds then then hit the off button when it asks you if you really want to turn the phone off.

So (5, Funny)

niceone (992278) | about 7 years ago | (#20537683)

When you go out of the country, just yank the battery out.

Oh, wait...

Re:So (-1, Flamebait)

aichpvee (631243) | about 7 years ago | (#20537719)

Why did he even bring the fucking thing? And not just one but THREE?!?! This idiot got what he deserves, I hope they make him pay it.

Re:So (2, Insightful)

GeckoX (259575) | about 7 years ago | (#20537803)

It was OFF.

How the hell is an END USER supposed to jump to the conclusion that OFF doesn't mean OFF. Every other phone I have EVER seen is actually OFF when you turn it OFF.

You're completely off base. This is a seriously major design flaw, of that there is no question.

Re:So (2, Funny)

Dunbal (464142) | about 7 years ago | (#20537991)

Every other phone I have EVER seen is actually OFF when you turn it OFF.

      I've got news [209.85.165.104] for you...

Re:So (4, Insightful)

Carbonite (183181) | about 7 years ago | (#20537877)

He deserves a huge bill simply because he brought his iPhone(s) to another country? I don't think so. I'm all for personal responsibility, but it's not like he was intentionally using the phone. He had them turned off and could reasonably have assumed it wasn't going to be accessing the network.

Re:So (1)

Trub68 (1140871) | about 7 years ago | (#20537805)

That's called not knowing the operation of your phone. You can turn off the email account, which will stop it from syncing. No problem.

Re:So (1)

DemoLiter3 (704469) | about 7 years ago | (#20537995)

When you go out of the country, just yank the battery out. I just had a great business idea : stylish tin cans to store your iPhone in when traveling abroad

Simple solution (0, Redundant)

gblues (90260) | about 7 years ago | (#20537685)

I wonder why he didn't just take out the battery.

Oh wait...

Re:Simple solution (1)

rlp (11898) | about 7 years ago | (#20537733)

I wonder why he didn't just take out the battery.

I wonder why he brought an IPhone on a trip to Europe. He's probably wondering why he bought an IPhone.

The law needs to clarify things like this (3, Insightful)

MikeRT (947531) | about 7 years ago | (#20537695)

Why should he be hit with a $4,800 bill when he thought that the device was off? If anything, why shouldn't AT&T and Apple be legally liable for deceiving him into thinking that the device was turned off when in fact it wasn't.

Re:The law needs to clarify things like this (2, Insightful)

CaptainPatent (1087643) | about 7 years ago | (#20537791)

This was exactly the first thing I thought. I doubt there is a way they are legally liable for such charges when they occurred without the user's knowledge or interaction. The only way they can be charged is if somewhere it was stated that this can/would happen if they took the phones out of country and network range.

Re:The law needs to clarify things like this (2, Insightful)

sholden (12227) | about 7 years ago | (#20538071)

So I can charge Westinghouse for the electricity used by the TV they made, since when I press the "off" button on the remote is goes into a standby mode?

I mean who would have thunk that the button the iphone manual labels "Sleep/Wake button" would actually put the device in "sleep" mode and not turn it off?

Re:The law needs to clarify things like this (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | about 7 years ago | (#20538105)

So if it were buried on page 18 of the fine print contract no one actually reads anyway, *then* it's okay to have an "off" button that doesn't turn the phone off?

I'm all for disclosure and personal responsibility, but some things you just shouldn't have to watch out for.

(Incidentally, why didn't they leave it home if it were going to be off the whole time? Afraid it would be stolen in a home robbery?)

Re:The law needs to clarify things like this (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20537863)

Perhaps it's explained in the manual that he didn't read? I would agree that a device should be off when it's off, but if it's not, and there is a good reason for it, and it's explained in the manual, then that is simply a case of buyer beware.

Re:The law needs to clarify things like this (-1, Flamebait)

Dunbal (464142) | about 7 years ago | (#20537943)

For the same reason that someone who signs a contract without reading it and/or insisting on changes, deserves to be screwed. It's called a manual, it comes with the device, and you are allowed to read it. There is no "deception", only ignorance on the part of the user.

Re:The law needs to clarify things like this (1)

darkmeridian (119044) | about 7 years ago | (#20537987)

The dude can't even pull the battery out of the iPhone because, you know, it's welded in. And who's really going to remember to put the iPhone into airplane mode when he's just going to another country?

Re:The law needs to clarify things like this (2, Insightful)

kevinadi (191992) | about 7 years ago | (#20538021)

The TFA said it all: Apple spokeswoman Natalie Kerris points out in its terms and conditions that it will cost an arm an a leg to use an Iphone out of the US even if no services are intentionally used.

IANAL, but the customer is most likely out of luck if he tries to challenge this. After all, this is in the terms & conditions that he supposedly agreed upon.

This is another major blow to iPhone, on top of the recent price cut. Now we have an Apple spokeswoman admitting freely that the simple act of bringing it out of the country without using it actually cost "and arm and a leg". I have to point the blame to ATT for greed and Apple for letting this happen. How much more can you rip off from your early adopters (which are presumably loyal Apple customers)?

Waiting to take the battery out? (1)

biocute (936687) | about 7 years ago | (#20537715)

I wonder why there are so many posts saying to wait to take the battery out?

Re:Waiting to take the battery out? (1)

another_neophyte (1050364) | about 7 years ago | (#20537875)

I think it's because the iPhone shares the iPod's battery issue, which is that neither is user replacable.

Re:Waiting to take the battery out? (1)

MagicM (85041) | about 7 years ago | (#20537879)

The iPhone features a built-in rechargeable battery that is not intended to be user-replaceable, similar to existing iPods. Once the battery reaches the end of its life time the phone will need to be returned to Apple and replaced for a fee.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Iphone#Miscellaneous [wikipedia.org]

Requisite tag for this article: iphOWNED (5, Funny)

jimstapleton (999106) | about 7 years ago | (#20537723)

I think that covers the situation nicely.

There is no "Off" ? (1, Insightful)

Gopal.V (532678) | about 7 years ago | (#20537729)

The iPhone updates email even when it's off?

Then how is it legal to carry it on airplane or somewhere where it requires to operate in complete radio-off mode?

Re:There is no "Off" ? (4, Informative)

gad_zuki! (70830) | about 7 years ago | (#20537819)

>Then how is it legal to carry it on airplane or somewhere where it requires to operate in complete radio-off mode?

It has an airplaine wireless off mode. The problem is that the users who buy these things are too hip and smart and cool to spend 45 seconds with the manual. User error, nothing to see here.

Re:There is no "Off" ? (3, Insightful)

struppi (576767) | about 7 years ago | (#20538007)

User error, nothing to see here.

You are kidding, right? This is absolutely no user error. It should be safe to assume that turning the thing off implies radio off.

Re:There is no "Off" ? (5, Informative)

Richthofen80 (412488) | about 7 years ago | (#20537833)

The iPhone has a radio-off mode, where it disables its cellphone antennae and wifi antennae. Its called 'airplane mode' and accessible through the settings.

It also has a power-off, where it essentially turns off everything except the sensor to turn it back on again. Not too many people even know this exists, even if they own an iPhone. If you press and hold the lock button at the top right, a screen will appear that says 'slide to turn off'... this is the only way to reboot the iPhone, I think.

Most people press the 'sleep' hold button once, thinking that 'turns it off', but all it does is disable the screen. its still running, and using its antennae.

Re:There is no "Off" ? (1)

CommanderData (782739) | about 7 years ago | (#20538079)

The guy is an idiot and deserves what he got. "OFF" is not just when the screen is dark. You have to press and hold the button on the top of the iPhone for about 5 seconds, and it will bring up a screen that says "Slide to power OFF". You then slide your finger across the screen and it is turned off. For real. I have 2 iPhones (one for me, one for the wife), we travel out of the country (she's in Scotland right now) and don't have these kind of problems...

They should have known: "Think Different"? (1)

dbolger (161340) | about 7 years ago | (#20537735)

Your phone stays on, running programs and checking services even after you have switched it off. You can't get much more different than that!

Updates While "Off" (1)

AtomicSnarl (549626) | about 7 years ago | (#20537903)

That's it -- I'm simply going to have to not use my PrOn-A-Day screen saver during my month-long Child Labor Personal Services research trip to Thailand. Maybe Penny Arcade instead!

In other news... (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20537737)

"Apple fanboys get what they deserve."

Seriously though, that sucks, and so does Apple.

Soo.. (4, Insightful)

Kazymyr (190114) | about 7 years ago | (#20537739)

If the international data plan charges $24 per 20MB, and they got a bill for $4800, that means the 3 phones, while turned off, downloaded a total of around 4GB. WTF?

Re:Soo.. (1)

fastest fascist (1086001) | about 7 years ago | (#20537771)

I was just thinking the same, and also wondering how likely that is to even be possible over EDGE or GPRS or whatever that thing uses...

Roaming Charges? (2, Interesting)

tkrotchko (124118) | about 7 years ago | (#20537883)

Could be the ridiculous rates you get charged by operators in Europe.

Last year, a colleague and I were staying in London and he called our local travel office to make some changes to the flight. He was on the phone for 30 minutes (mostly on hold) and he was presented with a bill for $600 (300 pounds). Now, you tell me what the rate was...

Anyway, he just refused to pay it, and the manager eventually took it off. But still... seems like a lot of places are set up to cheat the unwary traveler.

Re:Roaming Charges? (3, Informative)

jimicus (737525) | about 7 years ago | (#20538117)

Was that a hotel or a mobile phone bill? Roaming charges were recently the subject of an EU court case which has placed a cap on them:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/business/4851730.stm [bbc.co.uk]

http://ec.europa.eu/information_society/activities /roaming/roaming_regulation/index_en.htm [europa.eu]

Though I can't see it helping much if you're using a US cell phone in the EU.

Re:Soo.. (5, Insightful)

MaestroRC (190789) | about 7 years ago | (#20537893)

That's the *in-plan* rate. And, that probably only covers the first 20MB anyhow. Read the linked article (not the inquirer, the original), and it mentions that data rates can be as high as $20/MB in some countries, and that one data session was over $200 (10MBish? Seems reasonable for some attachments).

Re:Soo.. (2, Insightful)

devnullkac (223246) | about 7 years ago | (#20537905)

He probably didn't have the international data plan; that's why he left the phones turned off.

Re:Soo.. (1)

Gabest (852807) | about 7 years ago | (#20537917)

That's roughly 5 MB/hour, for one month.

Re:Soo.. (1)

thegnu (557446) | about 7 years ago | (#20537921)

If the international data plan charges $24 per 20MB, and they got a bill for $4800, that means the 3 phones, while turned off, downloaded a total of around 4GB. WTF?

I am not an expert on this, but it's conceivable that if they were traipsing about the countryside (with 3 iphones--sheesh), that the iPhone just FAILED to transfer 4GB. It would depend on how the network metered the service, of course, but it sounds like a possibility to me.

Can anyone with any background in this either back me up or refute me all to hell?

Re:Soo.. (1)

Kazymyr (190114) | about 7 years ago | (#20538019)

That would be even worse. So you're charged even for failed transfers? Vade retro, iPhone!

Re:Soo.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20537955)

Actually if you have no plan for international data AT&T charges .0195 per KB. So $4800 is around 246 meg.

Re:Soo.. (1)

Renraku (518261) | about 7 years ago | (#20537965)

Its a well-known fact that all cell phone companies, unless you have the unlimited plan and are squarely within their range, will rape you on data charges.

Sprint is ten cents per kilobyte. I made the mistake of checking google maps (I downloaded onto my phone practically as soon as I got it) without the data plan. Instant $20-30 charge. Thankfully they took it off, and I purchased the data plan..since I use that and other options.

But as for the amount of bandwidth, maybe they were seeding a torrent from their phone..it'd be the trendy thing to do at least.

Re:Soo.. (1)

Andy Dodd (701) | about 7 years ago | (#20537973)

More likely $24 for the first 20MB and a much higher per-KB cost after that (just like the non-unlimited domestic plans), not $24 per 20MB for each 20 MB chunk.

That's even if he had the $24 plan in the first place, if he didn't the first 20MB was probably VERY expensive.

I think AT&T's international data roaming is something like either 1.9 cents or 19 cents per kilobyte.

While I'm happy with AT&T as a new customer (about 2 weeks so far and I'm so happy I've ditched Verizon Wirele$$), I'm glad I don't have an iPhone. Unlike the iPhone, my 8525 (HTC TyTn) can be unlocked and if I want to use it out of the country I can throw in a prepaid SIM at my destination country. Yes, the iPhone can also be unlocked but many of its features will break on a non-AT&T network. I also have full control over when my 8525 fetches email or uses data...

Surfing the Med (2, Insightful)

Somegeek (624100) | about 7 years ago | (#20538055)

From the grandfather article:

"In countries outside the plan, charges can run from $5 to $20 per megabyte, said Ben Wilson, editor of iPhone Atlas, a Web site owned by the online news company CNet."

I'm guessing that the middle of the Mediterranean is outside of the covered countries. It also says they were checking a total of seven different email accounts. 7 accounts * 20$/MB could add up pretty quickly, 35MB per email account would do it.

Re:Soo.. (1)

Red Flayer (890720) | about 7 years ago | (#20538057)

If the international data plan charges $24 per 20MB
If is the important word, there.

Something tells me they charge per session for each 20MB or portion thereof, just as they charge you the full three minutes for a 10-second long-distance phone call (though I'm not sure they do this anymore).

One plan * $24 * 200 sessions. Seems easy to me for them to come up with that number, though that doesn't make it any more fair.

Magazine subscription (0)

biocute (936687) | about 7 years ago | (#20537749)

This is similar to some magazines, which keep sending you the mags AND invoices, even if you have already cancelled the 10th fricking time.

Re:Magazine subscription (-1, Offtopic)

thegnu (557446) | about 7 years ago | (#20537961)

This is similar to some magazines, which keep sending you the mags AND invoices, even if you have already cancelled the 10th fricking time.

Yeah, I hate Chicks With Dicks Aficionado, too. Who the hell do they think they ARE, anyway?

How to make BIG BUCKS with your iPhone (4, Funny)

word munger (550251) | about 7 years ago | (#20537757)

1. Travel overseas and rack up huge iPhone bill
2. Submit your story to blogs, forums, and /.
3. ????
4. Profit
5. Pay your iPhone bill

Try turning it off instead of sleeping the display (5, Informative)

wal9001 (1041058) | about 7 years ago | (#20537761)

Sleep: Press sleep/wake button briefly. Off: Hold button for several seconds, slide red slider control that shows up. Of course it downloads new messages when the display is sleeping. There'd be no point to sleep if it didn't.

Re:Try turning it off instead of sleeping the disp (1)

gEvil (beta) (945888) | about 7 years ago | (#20537837)

Wow, a knowledgeable and informative post. Too bad it's the only one so far...

Re:Try turning it off instead of sleeping the disp (2, Funny)

arose (644256) | about 7 years ago | (#20538015)

It's so intuitive!

Gap in the market! (5, Funny)

adycarter (261257) | about 7 years ago | (#20537767)

So when the phones "off" it communicates, and you can't kill it all together by removing the battery?........

Coming soon to the iStore, the iCoffin, a lead lined box designed for when you need to take your phone out of the country, or near medical equipment.

Be the envy of the Intensive Care ward with your small and portable iCoffin weighing only 1 tonne, marvel at its lead casing, lick its tasty exterior and be a role model for Chinese toy makers everywhere!

Re:Gap in the market! (4, Funny)

Kazymyr (190114) | about 7 years ago | (#20537859)

That's actually a neat idea, but you don't need the lead (the thing's not radioactive to my knowledge). Let's see which gadget company will be the first one to sell Faraday's cages for iphones. Can you just imagine the ads? "Be absolutely protected from unwanted phone bills! Only with the iCase(TM)"

It's Tinfoil Hat Time! (2, Funny)

OmniGeek (72743) | about 7 years ago | (#20538061)

1. Take large sheet of tinfoil
2. Wrap that sucker up like a ham-and-Limburger sandwich
3. Explain to the nice folks at the X-ray machine why that suspicious package is your iPhone
4. Be unable to get emergency calls from your family at home while on your Mediterranean cruise

Of course, there's always the simple, brute-force power-down solution: the iHammer. (Can you tell how unimpressed I am with this overpriced, overhyped gewgaw?)

This had better get fixed (2, Insightful)

phayes (202222) | about 7 years ago | (#20537817)

If Apple wants to sell more than a token number of iPhones to people outside the USA as it is planning to. Given that countries elsewhere are smaller, the likelihood that a user is not in their home country is much larger. If the iPhone cannot be taken outside your home country - even when off - what use is it?

The only correct resolution is for Apple & ATT to eat these charges until the iPhone's GSM radio can be set to OFF when not inside the coverage of the selected carrier.

Re:This had better get fixed (1, Insightful)

MistaE (776169) | about 7 years ago | (#20537957)

The whole article is FUD. The iPhone wasn't "OFF" -- it was just asleep. If users want to be stupid and pretend that sleep is off, then they pay the consequences.

Besides, there's three legitimate ways they could have avoided the charges, you can just turn it off, but that wouldn't make much sense since you couldn't use it as an iPod. You can also go into the email settings and turn off auto-check, but since you obviously don't want any roaming charges, it wouldn't make much sense to keep the radio on. That's why there's the airplane mode which will shut off the radio and everything that has to do with it.

Seriously, what else does Apple need to do. Does Airplane mode need to be in big bold letters on the main menu with a note that says, "Hey! USE THIS IF YOU GO OVERSEAS." I would hope that if you buy an iPhone you're knowledgeable enough to look up the airplane mode.

Sheesh.

Re:This had better get fixed (4, Insightful)

CronoCloud (590650) | about 7 years ago | (#20538115)

Well perhaps they should call Airplane Mode, "radio off/disable radio" mode. Because normal people might not realize what Airplane mode does and only think of using it on an airplane.

Re:This had better get fixed (2, Insightful)

csnydermvpsoft (596111) | about 7 years ago | (#20538009)

My guess is that phone plans in those other countries (especially small, non-island ones) have much better roaming terms than US plans.

Thats called standby or sleep, not off. (4, Informative)

shidarin'ou (762483) | about 7 years ago | (#20537851)

When you push the button at the top once, it puts the phone to sleep. When you hold the "sleep" button down for 3 seconds, it actually turns off- totally off.

Maybe they should have done that- instead of wondering why their "off" phones were still "turning on" to ring.

BS (1)

jaysones (138378) | about 7 years ago | (#20537867)

I call BS on this. I've never noticed my iPhone updating email when it's off. Can anyone else confirm this?

Yikes (4, Funny)

y86 (111726) | about 7 years ago | (#20537869)

Apple spokeswoman Natalie Kerris points out in its terms and conditions that it will cost an arm an a leg to use an Iphone out of the US even if no services are intentionally used.


I didn't realize organ trading was allowed in the US.

Re:Yikes (2, Funny)

Kredal (566494) | about 7 years ago | (#20538011)

It's not. That's why it costs an arm and a leg OUTSIDE the US.

Uhhhh (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20537871)

There IS an Airplane Mode

Re:Uhhhh (2, Funny)

mir (106753) | about 7 years ago | (#20537999)

But the guy was on a cruise BOAT.

No surprise here - its At&t (1)

unity100 (970058) | about 7 years ago | (#20537881)

We all know their methods equate with concept of crooky practices passing as 'business'. But this time, apple is caught in the mess too.

Re:No surprise here - its At&t (1)

Charliems (764942) | about 7 years ago | (#20538073)

This isn't true at all, I was in British Columbia for 2 weeks, my cell phone bill went up a few bucks because I did make some calls. The thing that uses data is checking for email which I set to manual and only used while at the hotel on wifi. If the phone is off, it does not do anything, it is off, locked or asleep is a different matter though. I think this idiot set his mail to check every 15 minutes and just went on about his business. The default settings on mail is manual, you need to chenge it to check automatically.

Turned Off IPhone (1)

Snives (207067) | about 7 years ago | (#20537951)

This does tend to happen on smart phones, not just the iphone. My Treo acted the same way and racked up $300 when I tried to cancel my unlimited data plan to see if I could get by on per minutes charges. It was making connections on its own even when I thought the phone was off. This is also the reason why the battery lasts so much longer when you manually turn off the phone via the Wireless Manager instead of trying to just use the "off" button.

boycott (5, Funny)

Skapare (16644) | about 7 years ago | (#20537989)

"boycottcingular.com" is now the new "boycottatt.com".

precaution (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20538093)

better wrap your iphone in tinfoil next time you go on a trip, just to be sure ...

This is just idiotic, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 7 years ago | (#20538113)

Is it reasonable to believe that closing a flip phone turns it "off"? This is simply user error.

However, is it possible to have the phone on but data services off? I can't think of it. You could set the mail to "manual" but how do you disable the updating of whether and stocks? Maybe all those other data services only get updated when you access them manually? Actually, I think that is the case.

User error.
Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>