blackberries and the difference between our two countries

Before I got the iPhone, I had a BlackBerry. «Torch» to be exact.

This device was just lying around here, doing nothing, which I thought was kind of a shame — there’s nothing wrong  with it!

Got this bright (?) idea I could put a prepaid card in it and introduce Gerry to the world of mobility. In some ways … even though I’ve lived here for ten years … I still live in the old world, where these things were easy to do! You wouldn’t even think about it.

BlackBerry

In Sweden, which is the country I know something about, you walk in to any store where they sell electronics and buy an envelope with a SIM-card in it. You put it in your phone, the phone number is stated in the envelope, and off you go. If you choose to register your number with Telia, or whatever carrier, you get extra money to call for, otherwise it’s anonymous. Your phone isn’t ‘locked’ to the carrier so you’re free to choose.

Over the years I haven’t had much reason to ponder all this, so I happily decided to put in a new SIM-card in the BlackBerry. Then it struck me; «I haven’t seen any such thing around … only prepaid PHONES!» Went to our friendly carrier BELL and told them I wanted to buy a prepaid SIM-card. This was apparently very unusual because they looked a bit like a deer in the headlights … began to stutter «well … uhmmm …. yes, I guess you could do that …but where are you going to put it?!» I explained I had a BlackBerry lying around doing nothing so I’d decided to put it in that.

Turns out the phone has to be ‘activated’ WITH the new SIM-card and for that they wanted $70. That seemed a little pricey to me, but they said I could also call a certain number and they’d do it for me over the phone for $25. But then I needed a voucher or I’d have to give them my credit card over the phone. So … I bought a voucher and a SÏM-card.

Went home, put the SIM-card in the BlackBerry and called the number. When I’d punched through all the choices the voice gave me, it told me to punch in my 10-digit prepaid phone number. Well … I didn’t HAVE a number, did I?! My card wasn’t activated … and they didn’t give me any option to get to a live human being. Usually it works to hit 0 [zero] in these situations but not so here!

Ended up calling the generic number to BELL and asked for the activation department or whatever. Told the girl that I’d ended up in a sort of Catch22 situation and she said they knew about it and I should have just punched in ten zeroes (!!!).

Now, I gave her all my credentials from the voucher, got a phone number and they were supposed to send an SMS to the BlackBerry when it was active. I waited 24 hours, nothing happened. Same procedure over again, call back, but this time I had a number. Right now, I can’t even remember what was wrong but after that call and a few more hours, it was finally up and running. Phew!

Now, I just have to get Gerry to like it 🙂

Showing it to him … all the ins and outs of the phone … has just made me love my iPhone even more [if possible].

12 Replies to “blackberries and the difference between our two countries”

  1. I think the situation is a bit more relaxed in the UK – just buy a SIM card on pay-as-you-go, and it will fit into any unlocked phone. If one happens to have a locked phone, there are lots of little outfits that will unlock it.

    1. Yes, I think it’s more relaxed all over Europe. Yesterday, I saw in the grocery store, that I could have bought a prepaid phone for $25 so … that could have been an alternative, but again — I would have had to ‘verify’ the BB. pffft..

    1. Thank you, Linda … Now it feels good to be back again.

      Oh … I don’t see that happening in any foreseeable future *grin*.. He and I differ in that way.

  2. You need a lot of patience to get that phone working again. I wonder how many old phones just laying around instead of giving them to someone who really need a phone.
    Perhaps a god idea for business?
    I hope that Gerry learn how to use the phone. I have tried to teach my mother but I had given up.
    She needs a phone with one button, on or off. When it’s on the phone should do what she told it to do, perhaps then it will work.

    1. Oh I think there are lots of people trying to make business out of it … I see lots of ads on TV. They’re American, though…
      At this point, I’m doubting he’ll make much use of it…

  3. I knew how cell phones work in Sweden after being with my friend Lars in Sweden. They finally have it here where you can keep the same number even if you switch who your carrier. Used have to get a new number. Hated that.

    Willie is not much for his cell phone. He is always having trouble with it. I tend to not have much patience with him when it is stuff that is plain as day to me. But I try not to let him know. At least he can call and read texts. He can send a text but won’t. ANd he never takes a photo.

    1. Hey Julie …
      Well, then you know.

      Can you believe it … that both you and I had BlackBerries?! Now that I’ve been dealing with all this, it’s like a whole different world. I could NEVER go back…

  4. A lot of bureaucracy for a phone!
    I don’t like Apple and their products, because they’re censoring a lot of websites with their devices and apps. I don’t need to be protected from ‘immoralism” and I don’t need a company to protect me. I am an adult and fully capable of protecting myself.

    1. I had no idea about that CG! What websites do they block??

      I just love the two Apple products I have … the quality of them, and the way they work…

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