Syncing E-Mail Accounts Via iTunes – Apple’s Tech Support Lets Me Down

11/08/2011

As you can imagine, I have lots of Apple products. To give just a quick rundown, in my home-office at the moment are two iMacs, two MacBook Airs, an iPad, an iPod touch, an iPod classic, and sundry other devices (Magic Trackpad, wireless keyboard, external DVD drive, dock, etc.) Since I live in the country, far from any Apple repair center, I buy AppleCare contracts for all my Macs. However, I don’t buy them for the iPods and iPads, and never have.

Apple’s support has always been excellent, though they were not able to resolve a recent problem, and this disturbs me. But I’m writing now about a problem with iTunes and my iOS devices, and the fact that Apple effectively offers no support.

Before iCloud was introduced, I had a MobileMe family pack; this gave me five accounts, one for myself, one for my wife, one for my son, and an additional one I used for an e-mail address and iDisk for this blog. Since I changed to iCloud, I had to drop that latter address, and created a contact address on my own server, mcelhearn.com. However, even though I deleted that address in Mail, it still shows up in the iTunes Info tab, under the Sync Mail Accounts section. Now, it’s no big deal that I can’t remove it, but at the same time, a new account I created for a client doesn’t show up in that section.

So I first called AppleCare. They couldn’t help; they said that I should contact Apple’s Express Lane service for MobileMe support. They couldn’t help, and said I should contact iTunes support. I did so, and got a particularly clueless woman on the phone who actually told me that I have to email iTunes support to have them remove the email accounts. She clearly didn’t understand what the problem was – I made it very clear, using small words, that this is account information on my Mac, and has nothing to do with anything that iTunes controls.

I’ve actually become increasingly disappointed with Apple’s support in the past couple of years. While they’re good with hardware problems – in most cases, not in the problem I linked to above – their support for services is increasingly poor. I know that Apple has to support a lot of people using services such as iTunes, and now iCloud, but if they don’t have efficient support for these services, people will get annoyed. (To be fair, iTunes’ e-mail support for purchase problems has always been efficient, if not particularly fast.)

In any case, I have no answer to this problem. I’m guessing there’s a file to delete somewhere, but I haven’t been able to find out which one. Any ideas? Feel free to post in the comments.