"AT&T has simplified the 3G iPhone acquisition and activation process, allowing the iconic device to be purchased pre-activated online.
The iPhone 3G's activation process has earned criticism since the device's launch in July. It differed from its 2G progenitor in that it had to be activated in-store, an aspect which caused immediate delays in availability due to over-stressed AT&T and Apple infrastructure. Many who eagerly waited in line for the iPhone 3G found themselves in line a second time for activation, others were sent home with printed instructions on how to activate the device from home. Home activation proved to be just as much of a hassle."