Mac Information

Apple Macintosh, iPod, iPad and iPhone news and advice in Dublin, Ireland


iPhone 5 arrives this week

The new iPhone 5 is to be launched this Friday in Ireland. Looking at the carriers’ websites you would wonder if it is launching at all! O2 do not have any mention of the new phone on their homepage. Vodafone and eMobile have a “coming soon” notice, but no details of pricing and availability.

“3” have the best information, with a page dedicated to the iPhone 5 and details of plans and phone costs:
They will sell the iPhone 5 on prepay for €659, whereas the bill-pay price plans have various costs, such as €40.66 per month and the iPhone for €319, or €60.99 per month and the phone for €269 (both prices based on 18 month contract).


As in the past, it looks likely that the iPhone 5 will cost between €200-300 euro on an 24 month contact, based on a €50-60 per month tariff. Apple’s website does not list prices yet, such as unlocked handsets, which are likely to be available from the Irish Apple Store:

The number of handsets available on Friday is likely to be small due to the worldwide demand. Apple are launching the iPhone 5 in 21 other counties on Friday, and so the chances of getting a phone on the day may be slim!.

Vodafone retail- closed for business?

Vodafone are currently advertising their new SureSignal product on the radio, promising a boost to your home or office signal when you buy a 50 euro box and plug this into your broadband connection. Sounds like a good idea. Many businesses we work with are affected by this problem, with weak signal for mobiles, and employees having to run outside to take a call!

Vodafone Sure Signal

However the major block to this device is Vodafone itself. The product is only available at Vodafone retail stores. This may be fine if you live next to a store, but as we do not, we decided to phone the stores to ask about availability, and whether these SureSignal devices were in stock. We are about 30-45 minute drive away, and so were unwilling to make this journey until we knew the trip was worthwhile.

Here are the results of our calls:


iPhone 4 launches in Ireland

The new iPhone 4 has launched in Ireland, and we have the info you need. The iPhone is available on the Vodafone, O2 and 3 networks, and here are the details for each company:


Vodafone introduce a price

Vodafone have announced tethering prices for the iPhone.

1GB will cost an expensive €9.99, but 10GB will cost €19.90. This second option seems like far better value and matches Vodafone's prices for mobile broadband USB sticks.
Tethering with Vodafone Ireland
However this compares to O2 rates, where the top plan includes 15GB for €19.99.
Here the current O2 tethering rates:
1GB - €12.50 monthly
7.5GB - €16.99 monthly
15GB - €19.99 monthly

What makes the O2 plan so cynical is that the iPHone comes with an unlimited data plan. It is just that when you use the iPHone to provide internet to your Mac or PC, they charge the tethering rates above.



Ways to escape Eircom

It will come of little surprise to anyone who reads the news on this website that we encourage clients to use companies other than Eircom. Their shoddy service has caused frustration and lost business to many of our clients, and their customer service is one of the worst we have experienced in Ireland.

Our own business has been damaged by them over the last few years with a rogue salesman who tried to sell us a broadband package which did not exist, and with slow speed broadband being available on our lines. So what do you do to escape these guys?

We recommend two levels of change. Firstly, you could consider a new provider for your phone line and internet. Vodafone strike us as having a slightly weak service, but we currently use them for phone and internet. Their customer service is generally good, although they are still tied to Eircom. Any faults and repairs need to be handled by Eircom engineers, and if you get a man/woman who is working by the book, they may not help you as they will not work on anything inside your house. However we have been happy with Vodafone's service, even if the speed of our internet depends on Eircom's network.



Internet tethering problems in Ireland

Internet tethering on the iPhone offers the possibility of using your phone as a modem, something which is very welcome for travellers and business users. It may can reduce the number of devices you carry with you, as many people on the road would already have a USB modem, which plugs into a laptop and provides 3G data access.
iPhone tethering in Ireland
Apple explain the steps required to set up internet tethering on this page, and troubleshooting tips here.

However the situation in Ireland is quite different when you go to use this feature. O2, still the only official provider of iPhones in Ireland, charge an extra fee for using tethering. Here are their current prices:
1GB O2 Advance Internet Tethering - €12.50 monthly - 1 GB usage allowance
7.5GB O2 Advance Internet Tethering - €16.99 monthly - 7.5 GB usage allowance
15GB O2 Advance Internet Tethering - €19.99 monthly - 15 GB usage allowance



Vodafone Ireland iPhone settings

Just in case any new Vodafone Ireland iPhone users need the details for their data and MMS settings, here they are:
Vodafone Ireland iPhone
To enter these, go to Settings -> General -> Network-> Cellular Data Network

Cellular Data
Username: vodafone
Password: vodafone

Username: dublin
Password: dublin
MMS proxy:
MMS Max Message Size: 307200
MMS UA Prof URL: .

Why no Visual Voicemail in Ireland?

Since O2 launched the iPhone in Ireland in March 2008, Visual Voicemail has been missing from the offering. When we contacted O2 about this in 2008, we were told that this would possibly be introduced if customers expressed interest. However at this point, we are sure that most people using an iPhone in Ireland are unaware that Visual Voicemail is available in other countries, such as in the US and the UK.

Visual Voicemail for iPhone in Ireland

Visual Voicemail was one of the key features of the iPhone when announced by Apple in January 2007. When O2 introduced the iPhone in the UK, Visual Voicemail was available, but the subsequent launch in Ireland excluded this feature. We speculated at that time that Apple were more concerned about launching on a network in Ireland than on insisting on this feature with the carrier.

We will be interested to see what happens when the iPhone is officially launched on Vodafone in 2010. Will this be the first chance for customers to use Visual Voicemail, and will O2 finally introduce this feature?.

First Impressions: iPhone on Vodafone Ireland

We received our new Vodafone Ireland iPhone this week, and have begun to use it on the network. Our first impressions are that there have been no problems or glitches, and that the registration process was seamless.

This is done through iTunes and involves the user entering their Apple ID and password. This worked perfectly, and the phone simply stated that it was now unlocked and registered.

iPhone 3GS on Vodafone Ireland

This is the one bit which is rather unfriendly. The iPhones which are being distributed are not set up for Vodafone, and so the user needs to type in the settings manually. IOS, the distributor, have included a two page document with the iPhone pack, which shows you the steps. The details need to be entered in the Cellular Data Network section of the Settings, under Network. Without these settings, the user can't send or receive MMS messages, or use the 3G network.
One item not included on the list is that you should restart the iPhone after you enter these settings. The MMS part will not function until you do this.

Calls, messaging and 3G quality:
We haven't noticed any difference in call quality on the Vodafone network to using any other Vodafone phone. We have not tested the 3G signal for data yet, but have been receiving emails on the move. Texting has worked flawlessly.

We have found the experience very simple and easy, although it is a bit like being a "shadow" customer of Vodafone. Their call centre will not be able to help with any queries (as stated in the letter) as their staff have not yet been trained, and when we log in to our account, there is no evidence of us using an iPhone. It all feels a bit covert right now, although it does not effect our day-to-day use of the phone, it feels a bit odd. The only issue might come if a user has a problem and needs to phone for support. IOS will only claim to be the distributor, and Vodafone won't have the answers. However as this is all part of a preliminary release, we appreciate that this goes with the territory.

If you are in a similar situation with an early iPhone on Vodafone, let us know your experiences.


Exclusive: iPhone arriving on Vodafone Ireland

Vodafone have begun to phone customers in Ireland in relation to the iPhone. It appears that they are beginning to sell the phone to customers who pre-registered.

iPhone on Vodafone Ireland

Vodafone are working with IOS, a company which will distribute the iPhone on their behalf. This is in advance of the official launch, happening in early 2010. This offer is being made to some of the Vodafone customers who registered online when they announced their intention to adopt the iPhone at the end of September . If the customer agrees to go ahead, IOS will arrange delivery of an iPhone to the Vodafone customer.

The tariffs also reveal that Vodafone are to offer a 2GB data package, twice the level offered by O2. Here are the details:

Basics: 0 minutes and 0 texts
Data allowance per month: 2GB
Free Vodafone to Vodafone calls
Contract length: 18 months
Cost of 16GB iPhone 3GS: €199
Monthly tariff: €34.99 per month

Basics: 150 minutes and 150 texts
Data allowance per month: 2GB
Free Vodafone to Vodafone calls
Contract length: 18 months
Cost of 16GB iPhone 3GS: €199
Monthly tariff: €49.99 per month

Basics: 300 minutes and 300 texts
Data allowance per month: 2GB
Free Vodafone to Vodafone calls
Contract length: 18 months
Cost of 16GB iPhone 3GS: €99
Monthly tariff: €64.99 per month

Basics: 500 minutes and 500 texts
Data allowance per month: 2GB
Free Vodafone to Vodafone calls
Contract length: 18 months
Cost of 16GB iPhone 3GS: €49
Monthly tariff: €84.99 per month

Basics: 700 minutes and 700 texts
Data allowance per month: 2GB
Free Vodafone to Vodafone calls
Contract length: 18 months
Cost of 16GB iPhone 3GS: Free
Monthly tariff: €99.99 per month

Vodafone have stated that they have a limited supply of these iPhones, and the 16GB 3GS model is the only one available. This is a limited release to those who registered early, and the full launch of the phone on Vodafone Ireland's network will around February 2010.

To compare the tariffs to those offered by O2, click here..

Vodafone to sell iPhone in Ireland and the UK

The news that Vodafone UK and Ireland will begin to sell the iPhone in the new year must come as good news to many people. Orange UK is also planning to join the party, and this will hopefully inject a good element of competition into the market.
iPhone at Vodafone Ireland and the UK
We have had a number of clients who have been reluctant to switch to get their hands on an iPhone, and in our own case, the O2 network reception is very poor at our office. So the idea of staying with Vodafone and finally being able to upgrade to an iPhone is good news.