Can’t set up your new Apple product? It’s not you, it’s them

Did you get a new iPhone, iPad, MacBook or other Apple device this morning? Congratulations! But if you’ve unpacked it and started posting it, hoping to start using it right away, I have some bad news.

You will wait a while.

A brief look at the Apple System Status page shows that everything is working as expected, but you’ve probably noticed that Apple ID servers are currently overloaded.

During setup, you will get the option to verify your Apple ID, but almost everyone encounters a problem where it hangs in the verification step and eventually tells you that there is a problem with the verification server.

Even if you pass and transfer data from an existing Apple product to a new one, you are probably stuck at some point in the transfer process.

Don’t worry, it’s not something you’ve done, but so many people trying to activate their devices this morning, that Apple is having trouble processing so many concurrent requests. This will continue throughout the morning and then start all over again around noon Eastern time, while the west coast finally wakes up and enjoys their Christmas morning.

How to fix it?

Unfortunately, there’s really nothing to fix here, but you have three options.

1) Keep trying

If you are persistent, you can always hit the check step again and again. Eventually you will be able to connect to the server and things will be fine. Then you can continue normally. But keep in mind, this is the most frustrating of the three options and can take a long time.

2) Setup as a new device

If you want to start using your device right away and don’t worry about transferring settings and contacts, you can easily set it up as a new device. Then later today, when everything dies down, you can enter Settings app and sign in with your ID to have everything set up the way you want.

3) Do nothing

Still, the easiest thing to do is do nothing. Put the device back in the box and wait until this afternoon or tonight to set things up. It’s my favorite way to deal with these Apple ID interruptions. It’s the least frustrating, and you can take your time and make sure your device is set up exactly the way you want it.

Happy Holidays!