I’ve been having problems trying to establish PPTP VPNs using my iPhone over my SingTel 3G connection. After quite a bit of troubleshooting, I found out that using the e-ideas APN assigns the iPhone a private IP address. I switched to the internet APN and the VPN worked right away.

However, when I switched to the internet APN, the tethering option disappeared. So either way, I can’t establish a VPN using my laptop. Effectively, this means I’m having a 3G service that doesn’t work.

So, I called SingTel’s helpdesk at 1626.

I asked if I could use the internet APN for tethering. They said I can’t, and gave me some bullshit about the internet APN being billed differently from e-ideas.

I asked if they could file a complaint for VPN issues over the e-ideas APN and they were so quick to disclaim their responsibility the moment I mentioned VPN; quicker than you can finish saying “boomz!” In fact, the customer service dude told me to call Apple when it’s obvious this wasn’t Apple’s problem.

VPNs are common in enterprises and I believe a lot of people out there need it to work. I cannot believe that SingTel would just disclaim responsibility to support VPN over the iPhone.

Worse even, some users in the HardwareZone Forum found out that using the e-ideas APN caps your transfer rates. This is something that’s not made known publicly, so if you are going to buy an iPhone with the SingTel iFlexi plans, please be aware.

This is not the first time SingTel has played punk with its’ customers. Last year, SingTel added Value Added Services (VAS) to customers’ accounts. The unaware customer gets the service free for a short period of time, and then they are later changed.

No, this is not the typical free service you get when you sign up for a new contract. SingTel actually added the services to existing customers!

Such a business practice known as negative option billing is not only unethical, but also against IDA’s policies.

When my wife called to cancel the service and asked for a refund, they rebutted and asked rudely if she had read her contract!

I have already written a formal complaint to IDA, but have yet to receive a response from them.

Think I whine a lot? Why not type SingTel Sucks into Google and read for yourself.