Sorry for the rant, I just need to vent a bit.

Well after several months of playing with problems on my 680 I'm finally getting it replaced. Of course dealing with the replacement was actually more of a headache than dealing with the problems. <sigh> Real quick here's the problems I was having:

Phone would stop recognizing the SIM card. This would happen about 2-3 times a week and the phone would just display "Emergency Calls only". Usually fixed with a soft reset, or turning the phone off. AT&T replaced the SIM twice to see if it would remedy the problem.

Bluetooth module would turn off. This would happen every other month or so. Simply put the BT on the phone would turn off. When I hit the button to turn it back on the phone would reset and startup again with the BT off. Click the button, phone reset, click the button, phone reset... you get the idea. All in all it usually took about 10 resets for it to turn the BT back on so I could use my headset. Bear in mind that it was turning itself off when my headset wasn't connected, so not a problem with the headset. AT&T told me to try the update to the 2.11 firmware to see if this would help both this problem and the SIM card problem.

Sometimes can't answer incoming calls. After the 2.11 update I can't answer from select people in my address book. The phone will ring/vibrate, and display the incoming call on the screen, but would not acknowledge me pressing the answer key (hard or touch screen) or trying to answer through my headset. Basically they call me and then I call them back making my treo an expensive pager. I've deleted these people out of my address book and added them back in and it doesn't make a difference. Also there's no name correlation between the two people I've noticed this on so I don't know why it's just the two of them.

So anyway I spend about 20 minutes on the phone with AT&T setting up my warranty replacement. We finally get to the part where I'm supposed to tell them what the Liquid Damage Indicator looks like and she's trying to tell me where it is. Bear in mind that my phone never had a LDI ever since I purchased it. The tech's instructions sounded like this, "Take the battery out. Now look above the connectors to a place where there's something missing and that's where you look. It's more towards the middle." Anyway she finally sent me back to the store to have them inspect the LDI and make a note in the system. Get to the store and the manager, assistant manager both agree that there isn't a LDI on either my phone or battery. I asked about that since I bought the phone at that store and they said they occasionally get phones (from various manufacturers) which don't have LDIs on them. I asked if it would void my warranty and they said it wouldn't as there are other things that can be checked inside the device to see if there's been water damage.

So I go back home and call AT&T back. They pull up the note the manager at the store put in about there being no LDI and say (and I quote), "Ok Sir we'll go ahead and send out a replacement phone for you, however since you've removed the LDI from the phone we'll be charging you full price for the replacement.". I tell him what the manager told me about other ways to check for water damage and he just replies that since the phone has been tampered with they won't give me a free replacement.... his supervisor said the same thing. Now I get off the phone for a bit, vent over the phone (to the friend who can't call me), and then when I'm a bit calmer go online to Palm's online chat assistance. I chat with someone for about 40 minutes or so and describe all the problems, specifically that there was no LDI on the phone from the manufacturer. At the end of all of this they provide me with a free call to palm customer support so I don't have to pay the $15. Call them up and discover that all the jokes about Indian tech. support are true. If it weren't so funny I would have cried. By the end of my hour and a half call to them they give me a RA# for repair or replacement of my phone at no charge.

So I've won, right? Wrong. The way Palm replaces devices is you send in your device, wait a week or so while they decide whether to repair or replace it and then they send it back, or give you a new one. The way AT&T does it is they send you a new device with a postage paid envelope to return the old one.... no 1-2 weeks downtime without a phone. Now with my RA# from Palm in hand I call back to AT&T and get a much nicer and more helpful person. I tell her my story and say that the manufacturer has agreed to replace the phone for free and given me a RA#. She goes and talks to her supervisor and when she comes back asks for the RA#. After she gets that they agree to send me a new phone for free since palm was going to anyway. Here's the kicker. She said when old devices come into their warehouse from returns they go to a third party technician to be inspected. The only thing that person checks is for obvious, abusive, damage and the status of the LDI. She said when they saw no LDI it would be shipped back to me with a notice that the warranty would not apply to it. So they're sending me a new phone, and there's a good chance they'll send me back my old phone as well. Nothing like spare parts.

Oh and to add one more fun part to the story, during my last tech-support inspired hard reset my desktop finally went over the deep end just froze after starup...... I couldn't restore my damn phone! <sigh> Anyway it was a good instigation to finally build the new computer.