iPhone 4, AT&T, and Apple Cautionary Tales: Redux

I've spent a lot of the last few days sacrificing sleep and goodwill toward Apple/AT&T to get my boyfriend a replacement iPhone 4 after his arrived cracked (original post). He wrote a blog post on the whole situation on Tumblr, and it's an educational and disturbing read. He got a defect-free phone, but criminy. It bodes ill that we had to move heaven and earth to receive basic, common-sense customer service. With any other product, if you get a broken widget, they apologize and send you a new one. They don't tell you that you probably dropped it, hang up on you, make you wait on hold for hours and hours, and transfer you all over the place while saying there's nothing they can do. AT&T did make good, to give them their due, but even so I'm left with lingering worries, because stuff breaks and things go wrong. Are iPhone users going to see more of this kind of refusal from both companies to fix problems? These are awesome phones, but they're expensive and they're vital to most people's lives (yes, vital; my cell phone is my main connection to the outside world in this day and age). I hope this experience was just because it was launch day and a confusing epoch in customer service (although it's not as if Apple and AT&T haven't launched iPhones several times BEFORE and jacked it all up).