Having got Virgin to refund my credit some days ago, I began using a new Three SIM today - or so I thought....
But it showed no signal when I inserted it into the 'phone; even when I swapped it with the Virgin SIM that I'd had in the primary slot, only the Virgin one showed any bars. The Three one had not only no bars but a cross indicating that the SIM wasn't live at all. Is it normal for a new SIM to take many hours to become active - or is that peculiar to Three?(The new Virgin mini-SIM that I'd had to insert only two months earlier, to which I didn't immediately shift my account, worked instantly.)
Three claims that signal strength indoors can be variable but I had literally no signal at all. (Surely it's a nonsense to imply that a customer's mobile 'phone needn't work indoors: what about invalids and home emergencies?) And all their 'solutions' seem to be geared to customers with mobile broadband accounts - not PAYG customers like me.
Then I couldn't fund the new SIM card because Three's website claimed that there was an error ("not a valid Three PAYG mobile number") when I carefully transcribed across the 'phone number printed on the SIM pack - even though their system simultaneously displayed a tick against the number box.
Getting and implementing a PAC went OK, although it won't be 'active' until Tuesday - so far, so like changing other sorts of provider - but the old number won't switch over to the new SIM for up to 24 hours after that, which I hadn't expected. Three's website also required the new and old mobile numbers to be put into the switching form in +44 format, rather than the 0... format printed on the SIM pack, which seems unnecessarily stupid of them.
I'm hoping that these issues are because the SIM card hasn't been in the 'phone for very long yet - a mere four hours, so far - and that it'll be 'active' when I try again tomorrow. But it's all really tiresome, so I do hope that Three isn't peculiarly unfriendly to new PAYG customers.