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Apple says just 0.55% of iPhone owners have reported antenna problems

post #1 of 108
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Just 0.55 percent of all iPhone owners have called AppleCare with an antenna issue, and the return rate for the iPhone 4 has been 1.7 percent -- much less than the 6 percent seen with last year's iPhone 3GS, Apple said Friday.

Apple Chief Executive Steve Jobs hosted Friday's event, and said that Apple has known about the antenna issue for the last 22 days. He said that the company has been working hard to address the issue since it first learned of it. "We've been working our butts off," he said.

"You know, we're not perfect," Jobs said, according to Macworld. "And phones aren't perfect either. But we want to make all of our users happy. And if you don't know that about Apple, you don't know Apple."

Jobs even offered a glimpse inside of Apple's secretive labs, showing a massive shielded room where the company tests its phones. Jobs said that Apple has 17 anechoic chambers, a $100 million investment. They also have 18 PhD scientists and engineers on their staff.

He also suggested the issue is not a major problem with iPhone 4 owners, noting that just 0.55 percent of all iPhone customers have called AppleCare with an antenna issue.

He also highlighted that other phones experience similar issues, including the BlackBerry Bold 9700 from Research in Motion, Samsung Omnia II, and the HTC Droid Eris. Clips of the phones losing reception when held improperly were shown.

"It's a challenge for the entire industry, and we're doing the best we can, but every phone has weak spots," he said.

Jobs also noted that on Thursday, Apple released iOS 4.0.1 for the iPhone, which improved the accuracy of the handset's display of signal strength. The cosmetic change did not, however, improve the reception with the phone, but rather changed how it reports the available reception.

The event kicked off by showing the "iPhone 4 Antenna Song," a YouTube clip that has garnered interest this week. The song parodies the iPhone 4 antenna problems, and suggests that the media has blown the issue out of proportion.
post #2 of 108
So far, the tone of the conference is that there is no problem and we're all idiots if we think there are. This will not do Apple's PR any good.

Yes, if you cup and death squeeze a phone you'll get signal drop. On the iPhone 4 all you need to do is rest your finger on the spot, no grip, no cupping nothing.
post #3 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain J View Post

So far, the tone of the conference is that there is no problem and we're all idiots if we think there are. This will not do Apple's PR any good.

Yes, if you cup and death squeeze a phone you'll get signal drop. On the iPhone 4 all you need to do is rest your finger on the spot, no grip, no cupping nothing.

Actually, you are only an idiot if you don't return the phone when you are experiencing this problem.
post #4 of 108
Hard to argue with a 0.55% complaint rate, unless of course you assume that Apple is lying. Which, no doubt, some will.
Please don't be insane.
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post #5 of 108
Did not admit to the problem, but this is the most I expected!
post #6 of 108
Ok, waiting for the meat of this.

The 0.55% call rate is silly. Most people with the problem are probably aware of the situation and have either remedied on their own, or waiting to see what Apple is going to do about it. No sense calling a help line when the whole world knows about the problem and Apple's official response is still pending. So, mention of the 0.55% call rate is silly.
post #7 of 108
Working on a fix!
post #8 of 108
WOOHOO! He acknowledged the proximity sensor issue and says a fix is coming
post #9 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain J View Post

So far, the tone of the conference is that there is no problem and we're all idiots if we think there are. This will not do Apple's PR any good.

Yes, if you cup and death squeeze a phone you'll get signal drop. On the iPhone 4 all you need to do is rest your finger on the spot, no grip, no cupping nothing.

I have a 3GS, is it so hard to avoid the seam on your IP4?
post #10 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain J View Post

So far, the tone of the conference is that there is no problem and we're all idiots if we think there are. This will not do Apple's PR any good.

Yes, if you cup and death squeeze a phone you'll get signal drop. On the iPhone 4 all you need to do is rest your finger on the spot, no grip, no cupping nothing.

What Apple forgot to include is the percent of idiots that complained, but doesn't and will never own an iPhone 4.
Originally Posted by Granmastak: Labor unions managed to kill manufacturing a long time ago with their unreasonable demands. Now the people they were trying to protect, are out of a job.
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Originally Posted by Granmastak: Labor unions managed to kill manufacturing a long time ago with their unreasonable demands. Now the people they were trying to protect, are out of a job.
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post #11 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by aquabella View Post

Actually, you are only an idiot if you don't return the phone when you are experiencing this problem.

According to Jobs, what would be the point, every smartphone is exactly the same way?

I am wondering why we did not get this burst when the Bold was released.

The conference seems to have altered it's tone in a positive way. I would have started out with this before launching into why there really is no problem.
post #12 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr Millmoss View Post

Hard to argue with a 0.55% complaint rate, unless of course you assume that Apple is lying. Which, no doubt, some will.

To be honest, how many of you guys have called up a tech company for support? I normally go to forums for immediate help. Usually, it's the complete tech newbs that call 800 numbers.
post #13 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by uguysrnuts View Post

What they forgot is to put the percent of idiots that complained, but doesn't and will never own an iPhone 4

Own one, am posting from it and love it. With a case it's great. Without it's often useless. I always have a case anyway.
post #14 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Naboozle View Post

Ok, waiting for the meat of this.

The 0.55% call rate is silly. Most people with the problem are probably aware of the situation and have either remedied on their own, or waiting to see what Apple is going to do about it. No sense calling a help line when the whole world knows about the problem and Apple's official response is still pending. So, mention of the 0.55% call rate is silly.

Exactly. I know I have the problem myself, but I haven't called in about it.
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post #15 of 108
Is Steve holding this press conference "the wrong way”.
Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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Dick Applebaum on whether the iPad is a personal computer: "BTW, I am posting this from my iPad pc while sitting on the throne... personal enough for you?"
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post #16 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mazda 3s View Post

To be honest, how many of you guys have called up a tech company for support? I normally go to forums for immediate help. Usually, it's the complete tech newbs that call 800 numbers.

Whoa, try calling Dell-Hell for support, let alone Google. Wait, google doesn't offer phone support, i forgot.
post #17 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiracer1987 View Post

I have a 3GS, is it so hard to avoid the seam on your IP4?

Yes. I'm right handed and always hold the iPhone 4 with my right hand. My pinky finger always bridges the gap between the two antennas. Yes, I could manage to remove my pinky from the iPhone 4 and point it straight up like I'm drinking a cup of tea, but I won't.
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post #18 of 108
Wow, I think Steve Jobs basically asked people to swamp his AppleCare folks regarding every little gripe about their products in today's press conference. I, for one and I bet I'm not alone in this, did not call AppleCare about the disappearing reception bars (continues to happen after installing 4.0.1 btw) because I knew Apple doesn't have a solution and that I'd be wasting my time on the phone to try and eke one out. I was playing the wait-and-see game.

But now Steve has sent a clear message that I should call their AppleCare line as soon as I notice any little problem no matter what.

Sigh, I'd better hold the phone 'correctly' or else my call might get dropped as I wait on hold...
post #19 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mazda 3s View Post

To be honest, how many of you guys have called up a tech company for support? I normally go to forums for immediate help. Usually, it's the complete tech newbs that call 800 numbers.

First I'll go to the internent to see if there is a quick solution, but if I have to I'll go to the 1-800 number. I went to the 1-800 number when my Xbox 360 RRODed.
post #20 of 108
Not a surprise really.

So I'll be sticking with the new 3Gs. Looking forward to the iP5 when it appears next year.
post #21 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain J View Post

According to Jobs, what would be the point, every smartphone is exactly the same way?

I am wondering why we did not get this burst when the Bold was released.

The conference seems to have altered it's tone in a positive way. I would have started out with this before launching into why there really is no problem.


If you aren't happy with the phone, return it. Period. I'm willing to buy a product from anybody who has a return policy like that. Seems like some people feel entitled to have a phone that is perfect, or Steve Jobs should go to jail.
post #22 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by skiracer1987 View Post

I have a 3GS, is it so hard to avoid the seam on your IP4?

Yes. I am a right handed person. I noticed the problem most when I would hold the phone in my left hand in the portrait position to type an email etc. That is how I held my 3G and my BB before then. The lower left corner of the phone hits the base below my thumb. Never had this problem with any other smartphone.
post #23 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Is Steve holding this press conference "the wrong way.

Thats pretty good.

On a side note: Looks like you need something else to do. Nearing 18,000 posts
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post #24 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by aquabella View Post

If you aren't happy with the phone, return it. Period. I'm willing to buy a product from anybody who has a return policy like that. Seems like some people feel entitled to have a phone that is perfect, or Steve Jobs should go to jail.

I am happy with the phone, because I have a case. IMO a phone should not require a case to work properly.

What really bothers me is the BS Jobs is feeding people. There is no question that this problem is far more prevalent on a phone where you're in actual contact with the antenna then when it's internal. All I'd like is some honesty which would do much to restore my trust in Apple.
post #25 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by gijoeinla View Post

Whoa, try calling Dell-Hell for support, let alone Google. Wait, google doesn't offer phone support, i forgot.

Dell customer support=Free 80 min trip round the world [call centers that is!]
post #26 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain J View Post

I am happy with the phone, because I have a case. IMO a phone should not require a case to work properly.

What really bothers me is the BS Jobs is feeding people. There is no question that this problem is far more prevalent on a phone where you're in actual contact with the antenna then when it's internal. All I'd like is some honesty which would do much to restore my trust in Apple.


If you think he's lying, return the phone! Nobody is forcing you to use an iPhone 4. If you are so disappointed, don't buy anymore apple products. Nobody is forcing you to use them.
post #27 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mazda 3s View Post

To be honest, how many of you guys have called up a tech company for support? I normally go to forums for immediate help. Usually, it's the complete tech newbs that call 800 numbers.

I bet it’s more common than you think. Even on tech forums I read posters calling a CSR to get answers. If you consider that most people aren’t on any tech forums calling a CSR might be the best and easiest option. Also, there are likely plenty of people that don’t own an iPhone 4 calling the forums asking about the issue.

That said, Apple specifically used the 0.55% number to represent calls to AppleCare, not phones with issues, and we know that most customers simply won’t call anyones so the 16,500 calls is likely a lot for Apple on a single issue in just 3 weeks.
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post #28 of 108
This has been way overblown by the media. Both my iPhone 4 and previous 3G drop calls at the same rate and locations. The iphone 4 is amazing, that is why it has a 1.7% return rate.

Apple did the right thing today. You live in low coverage area and your hands short the antenna, there is a free bumper for you. You don't like the iPhone with the bumper or without the bumper, return it for a full refund.

Antenna Case closed!
post #29 of 108
I wonder if Schumer will copy and paste from his Apple letter when writing to RIM, HTC and Samsung.
post #30 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain J View Post

I am wondering why we did not get this burst when the Bold was released.

This where the 'faulty' bars come into play. If the bars didn't exaggerate the problem there may have been less of an outcry.
post #31 of 108
He didn't discuss the problem caused by just touching the space. They showed all these other phones, where the person holding them had to squeeze so hard the flesh of their thumbs was squished and turning dark red, before the bars would drop. So what was missing from this:

1) Yes, other phones, apparently when squeezed, drop bars. How much actual signal loss. As has been long discussed, making it about the bars is misleading.
2) What about touch the band causing signal loss?

In the Q&A they were specifically asked:
"how does touching the corner with a single finger seem to cause this issue? Its not just a grip, it can just happen by touching a single finger."

The answer was a non-answer dodge:
"Your body is a pretty effective signal absorber. When you make contact with that phone, its performance in contact with you is less than its freespace performance. Its a way to attenuate the signal by some amount."

"My 8th grade math teacher once said: "You can't help it if you're dumb, you are born that way. But stupid is self inflicted."" -Hiro. 

...sometimes it's both
Reply

"My 8th grade math teacher once said: "You can't help it if you're dumb, you are born that way. But stupid is self inflicted."" -Hiro. 

...sometimes it's both
Reply
post #32 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mazda 3s View Post

To be honest, how many of you guys have called up a tech company for support? I normally go to forums for immediate help. Usually, it's the complete tech newbs that call 800 numbers.

If I had a serious problem I'd either call, or bring it back to where I bought it. Note also the 1.7% return rate, which seems to be a fair indicator of the number of people who've had real issues.
Please don't be insane.
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Please don't be insane.
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post #33 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Captain J View Post

Yes. I am a right handed person. I noticed the problem most when I would hold the phone in my left hand in the portrait position to type an email etc. That is how I held my 3G and my BB before then. The lower left corner of the phone hits the base below my thumb. Never had this problem with any other smartphone.

I'm truly sorry for your problem, but realize that it is still your decision and responsibility to return any product if it doesn't fully meet or suit your needs and expectations.

The comment about Apple PR just reeks of entitlement, but hardly surprising.
Originally Posted by Granmastak: Labor unions managed to kill manufacturing a long time ago with their unreasonable demands. Now the people they were trying to protect, are out of a job.
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Originally Posted by Granmastak: Labor unions managed to kill manufacturing a long time ago with their unreasonable demands. Now the people they were trying to protect, are out of a job.
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post #34 of 108
I certainly am not in the same room and getting the updates from the website. Overall, I think Steve is doing a great job. He seems to be presenting facts and if you guys are going to bitch about that then all I can say is that you are bunch of whiners.

Okay, even though his explanation about drop call difference between iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 might a bit shaky as antenna in iPhone 3GS was internal and same issue doesn't apply as iPhone 4, but maybe there is some truth about people casing there iPhone 3GS from their old 3G.

Secondly, I think people might not have called in to AppleCare or returned their iPhone because they love their iPhone 4 and they very well knew this was going to happen. So at end of the day, the numbers that he presented validates his both points - iPhone 4 is a better phone and people love their Apple products as they do know they are technologically advanced and very user friendly.

Finally, people got what they wanted - Free $30 case/bumper. And if they still want to they can return and get full refund with no restocking fees. I guess we just have to wait and see how soon do we see these returned phones as refurbished phone - Mostly likely not for a long time as I don't think we are going to see returns as fast and soon.

I think his explanation of drop call between iPhone 3GS and iPhone 4 makes sense about folks using cases from
post #35 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Is Steve holding this press conference "the wrong way.

Oh, cut that out. I think you typed this post the wrong way!
Please don't be insane.
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Please don't be insane.
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post #36 of 108
From Mobile Crunch Twitter feed:

Quote:
Q: On the free bumpers. That goes until Sept. 30th; is that because by Sept. 30th, people should just know the phone has issues?
#
A: No, that just gives us time to reexamine. Maybe people will be less focused on this problem; maybe we'll have a better idea.
by Greg Kumparak at 1:53 PM
#
post #37 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by aquabella View Post

If you think he's lying, return the phone! Nobody is forcing you to use an iPhone 4. If you are so disappointed, don't buy anymore apple products. Nobody is forcing you to use them.

Thank you!
Originally Posted by Granmastak: Labor unions managed to kill manufacturing a long time ago with their unreasonable demands. Now the people they were trying to protect, are out of a job.
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Originally Posted by Granmastak: Labor unions managed to kill manufacturing a long time ago with their unreasonable demands. Now the people they were trying to protect, are out of a job.
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post #38 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tulkas View Post

He didn't discuss the problem caused by just touching the space. They showed all these other phones, where the person holding them had to squeeze so hard the flesh of their thumbs was squished and turning dark red, before the bars would drop. So what was missing from this:

1) Yes, other phones, apparently when squeezed, drop bars. How much actual signal loss. As has been long discussed, making it about the bars is misleading.
2) What about touch the band causing signal loss?

In the Q&A they were specifically asked:
"how does touching the corner with a single finger seem to cause this issue? Its not just a grip, it can just happen by touching a single finger."

The answer was a non-answer dodge:
"Your body is a pretty effective signal absorber. When you make contact with that phone, its performance in contact with you is less than its freespace performance. Its a way to attenuate the signal by some amount."

Perhaps it's because on iP4, there is an actual mark showing exactly where to "just touch" to get the signal to drop. That mark doesn't exist on the other phones, so maybe it's harder to locate the spot to touch for attenuation?
post #39 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by Footloose301 View Post

Yes. I'm right handed and always hold the iPhone 4 with my right hand. My pinky finger always bridges the gap between the two antennas. Yes, I could manage to remove my pinky from the iPhone 4 and point it straight up like I'm drinking a cup of tea, but I won't.

lmao..... I don't blame you, I'm waiting for the "fix" before I jump in.
post #40 of 108
Quote:
Originally Posted by ehrhards View Post

Perhaps it's because on iP4, there is an actual mark showing exactly where to "just touch" to get the signal to drop. That mark doesn't exist on the other phones, so maybe it's harder to locate the spot to touch for attenuation?

probably because the spot isn't exposed.

In the end, I think Apple has now handled this as well as they could at this point. The bumpers apparently solve the discussed issues of the bars and the undiscussed issue of touching the spot.

I think the cut off for the free cases was chosen carefully. They likely need that amount of time to find a coating for the antenna and ramp up production using it. Otherwise, after sept 30, would we expect they just continue to sell it without what Steve's own personal theory dictates is the solution?

"My 8th grade math teacher once said: "You can't help it if you're dumb, you are born that way. But stupid is self inflicted."" -Hiro. 

...sometimes it's both
Reply

"My 8th grade math teacher once said: "You can't help it if you're dumb, you are born that way. But stupid is self inflicted."" -Hiro. 

...sometimes it's both
Reply
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