While they're visiting, we go into the most highly recommended telco branch and I pick my phone and eventually we even get someone come to help us. She seems nice, gets the phone and new sim card from out the back, proceeds with upgrading, and asks us about this other number on the account and Mum holds up her phone and says that it was just upgraded, and no need to touch it. All goes well right up until the person helping us encounters an error in upgrading the number to operate on the new network they've recently introduced. The complication, apparently, is that I need a new sim card, and the computer isn't cooperating. She gets two separate and distinct error messages before she takes everything out the back - old phone, new phone, old card, new card, my dad's id - and comes back with a cordless phone and is being talked through the process of updating. This is fine, we all roll our eyes and mutter "computers" under our collective breath. Eventually, the upgrade is done by an override code and we all leave nice and happy, though a little thirsty after the hour we spent in there. The security barriers beep on the way out - despite the two security guards wandering around in store and the fact that the phone was kept in the back, the security barcode is still attached to the box.
My mother takes out her phone in order to ring mine because she wants to know what my ringtone sounds like. Her phone, in the time we were in the store, has decided that it has an unregistered sim card. It is raining, cold, and my mother is feeling unwell. We come home and my mother rings up the telco. They can't do anything and have no idea what is going on as her sim card is registered and apparently happy, but will credit her account so that she can go buy a new sim card tomorrow.
My phone, however, apparently works.
We go into a different branch of the telco the next day, one where we've received rather strange service before, and thankfully encounter some good service... after they accuse us of switching sim cards around and ask my parents for their account passwords directly in front of other customers. They check the sim identification numbers against the ones on their database and find discrepancies... but we're all there, with our phones and sims and our sim data on the correct phones - why would my mother list her number as "Mum", for example?
What had apparently happened the day before was this:
- my original cell phone was switched to the new network but my sim not upgraded, so that my original sim (which i kept) didn't work.
- my mother's original sim (on the new network) was cancelled.
- my new phone and new sim was operating under my mother's number.
It took half an hour to transfer the data from each sim onto the correct phone and for me to get a new sim card in my phone. We weren't charged for the new sim card, despite what the person on the phone had said, and since then we have both had wonderful reception on the new network, all the way through some of the remotest parts of southern South Australia.
Summary: The initial clerk upgraded the wrong sim card but the correct number, initiating a game of musical cells.