A few weeks ago I had a problem logging into iTunes. I wanted to make a purchase, but iTunes kept giving me an error message. So, I tried the Mac App Store using the same account, and got a similar message. The trouble with iTunes turned into some fun with Apple.
I, Robot. Therefore, I Am.
I don’t recall the last time I had a problem buying something from Apple, but this time their online stores just didn’t want my money. Rather, they were not too sure who I was.
Nothing had changed except Apple couldn’t figure out who I was. My address and phone number and credit card number have been the same for the past eight or nine years, and through many iTunes, Mac App Store, and Apple Store purchases.
So, why did I keep getting this message?
We couldn’t verify your address. Make sure you’ve entered the correct Street, City, State, and Postal Code.
Hello? Apple! It’s the same one you’ve used for years. What’s going on?
Obviously, it was a glitch of some kind, and I was sure it would be straightened out. Just in case, I dug around online and found a way to send Apple support a note.
Here’s what I sent to Apple:
I’m trying to purchase through the iTunes App Store (and the Mac App Store) and the account asked for and rejects my address (same address in the system for years). “We couldn’t verify your address. Make sure you’ve entered the correct Street, City, State, and Postal Code.” The information is correct, but I receive the error message, which prohibits me from making a purchase through my Apple account. When will this issue be resolved?
Not bad. Not harsh. Straightforward, right? Here’s what I got back from Apple:
Hello. This is Matilda (name changed to protect the innocent) from Apple iTunes Customer Support. I hope you are having a nice day. Hi, Kate. This is just a quick follow-up to your previous request. I wanted to ensure that your iTunes Store issue has been taken care of. I am looking forward to your reply so that I can be certain it has been fully resolved.
That’s a little mechanical, and a bit stilted, but acceptable. And, sure enough the glitch was taken care of. By me. Somehow Apple decided to stop using the address it had on file, and compare that address to the official US Postal Service address, which was a little different, so the purchase was rejected (USPS loves all caps in the address).
I reminded Matilda that Apple had been using the previous address (also correct) for years. Matilda responded:
It’s Matilda again from Apple iTunes Store Customer Support, I hope you are having a nice day. Kate, you’re very welcome. I’m glad to hear that the issue was resolved to your satisfaction. It was our absolute pleasure to assist you with everything. Nothing makes Apple happier than to hear that we have pleased our customers. Customer satisfaction is our first priority. Should you have any issues with the iTunes Store in the future, please reply to this mail or just contact us via our website at: http://www.apple.com/support/itunes/store/
Thank you for being an iTunes Store customer. We appreciate your continued business.
Have a nice day!
iTunes Store/Mac App Store Customer Support
Somehow, I’m certain that Matilda didn’t actually write any of the above pre-canned, point-and-click responses. I’m not even sure Matilda is a real, live English-speaking human. Regardless, my purchases eventually went through without an additional hitch. Maybe Matilda and I will meet up one day, and joke about those canned, mechanical responses that Apple Customer Support associates are required to memorize.