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iPhone reception; Australian Mac sales boom; 30% off Office 2008

post #1 of 66
Thread Starter 
AT&T is investigating reports from iPhone 3G users who claim their new phones can't maintain a solid 3G signal. Meanwhile, new figures show a huge jump in Apple's share of the Australian PC market. And Microsoft is offering students up to 30% off Office 2008 with the purchase of a new Mac.

iPhone 3G reception

Are some iPhone 3G's plagued by reception problems? Apple and its US wireless partner AT&T don't think so. However, those with a less than stellar experience have been congregating on Apple's discussion forums for over a month now, demanding the company take notice.

Among the various issues are an unusual number of dropped 3G voice calls, calls that don't properly downgrade from a 3G signal to an EDGE signal when 3G reception weakens, and poor overall 3G reception in areas where other 3G phones reflect good reception.

In a research note to clients Tuesday, Nomura analyst Richard Windsor speculated that an "immature" chipset solution from Infineon may be to blame for the sporadic issues.

"We believe that these issues are typical of an immature chipset and radio protocol stack where we are almost certain Infineon is the 3G supplier," he wrote.

Windsor added that since he believes the problem to be embedded within the chipset itself, it's unlikely that Apple can rectify the issue through software updates.

While Apple has remained relatively mum on the subject, AT&T spokesman Mark Siegel said his firm is working with the iPhone maker to ensure that users have a great experience with the iPhone 3G, which he said has not been a source of tremendous complaints.

Siegel added the two companies are indeed investigating all customer complaints, but said it remains unclear whether the complaints are indicative of a widespread problem or the product of individual circumstances.

"How a device performs in individual situations depends on circumstances like where you are in the 3G coverage, how close you are to a cell site," he said. "Things like terrain and buildings all come into play. I'm not denying that people are having a less than satisfactory experience, but overall, the phone is doing great."

Australian Mac sales on the rise

Meanwhile, there's more good news for Apple's personal computer business coming out of Australia this week.

According to new figures released by market research firm Gartner, Apple's share of the local PC market rose to 5.3 percent in the second quarter of 2008, up from to 3.8 percent during the same period last year.

The firm estimate that Australians purchased approximately 1.2 million computers during the three months ended June, which would indicate sales of nearly 65,000 Macs -- an increase of 20,000 units from the year-ago quarter. That suggests Mac sales grew at over 50 percent in the region compared to just 9 percent growth achieved by the rest of the industry.

Rival market research firm IDC also released its own results this week, which largely corroborated those from Gartner. It placed Apple's share of the Australian PC market even higher, however, at 6.2 percent.

Student savings on Office 2008 through Sept. 8th

Finally, Microsoft said Tuesday it has teamed with a select few Apple authorized resellers like Amazon.com to offer students up to 30 percent off its various Office 2008 productivity suites when they're purchased alongside a new Mac before September 8th.

The offer translates into $15 off Office 2008 Home and Student Edition, $80 off Office 2008 Standard Edition, and $150 off Office 2008 Special Media Edition..

Amazon is also offering between $50 and $200 rebates on Apple's entire Mac line through August 25th.

AppleInsider last year published its Road to Mac Office 2008 series covering the new suite and its roots in great detail.
post #2 of 66
Apple better pray that it is not a chip problem, and related to software. You can almost taste the class action lawsuits, and return for repair costs that Apple will have to absorb.
post #3 of 66
The day Mac gets 25% market share, Windows will be history in three years. Windows is maintained mainly because of inertia and user ignorance. Somebody may be nervous at Redmond...
post #4 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapporobaby View Post

Apple better pray that it is not a chip problem, and related to software. You can almost taste the class action lawsuits, and return for repair costs that Apple will have to absorb.

It's probably AT&T- they suck. The original iPhone's reception in NYC was never great either.
post #5 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

It's probably AT&T- they suck. The original iPhone's reception in NYC was never great either.

On EDGE I mostly always get full bars in NYC.
post #6 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post

On EDGE I mostly always get full bars in NYC.

"Mostly always"- in one of the largest cities in the world?
post #7 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

"Mostly always"- in one of the largest cities in the world?

There are a lot large buildings in NY that aren't friendly to RF.
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post #8 of 66
As a potential buyer, I have been following the various iPhone reception threads.

I have become convinced there is an issue with the iPhone. I know there are many variables in the equation so I was initially skeptical too. But what finally convinced me was those people with two phones. They report that with the same carrier, in the same geographic location, with the same sim, the 3rd party phone works fine but the iPhone drops calls and does not ring when called.
post #9 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

"Mostly always"- in one of the largest cities in the world?

What does that matter, no phone maintains full bars 100% of the time.
post #10 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post

What does that matter, no phone maintains full bars 100% of the time.

And nobody lives forever- right?
Lisaten- I hear up in Harlem the iPhone barely works at all. Even David Pogue of NY Times kept droppping calls on the West side of Manhattan in his intial review of the 3G!
It does matter.
post #11 of 66
Re: iphone reception, another interesting thing is this Australian thread.
http://forums.mactalk.com.au/47/5390...ldwide-24.html

It's interesting because there are multiple carriers selling the iPhone over there. One of the carriers (known as Telstra) uses the 850MHz spectrum and all the others use the 2100MHz spectrum.

The customers on the 850 carrier report no problems while the others are getting the dropouts.
post #12 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

And nobody lives forever- right?
Lisaten- I hear up in Harlem the iPhone barely works at all. Even David Pogue of NY Times kept droppping calls on the West side of Manhattan in his intial review of the 3G!
It does matter.

I was responding to your comment about the previous phone on EDGE. Now you move on to tests of 3G. It was Walt Mossberg who complained of dropped calls in Manhattan.
post #13 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

There are a lot large buildings in NY that aren't friendly to RF.

That must be a GSM problem because no CDMA problems wirth Verizon in Manhatan. I guess that's why its so popular here.
post #14 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post

What does that matter, no phone maintains full bars 100% of the time.

For the sake of clarity, do you mean that no phone gets 100% reception for 100% of the time or that the strength indicator does not indicate full strength 100% of the time? Because my Nokia's get full strength where the iPhone is down a bar or two.
post #15 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

Re: iphone reception, another interesting thing is this Australian thread.
http://forums.mactalk.com.au/47/5390...ldwide-24.html

It's interesting because there are multiple carriers selling the iPhone over there. One of the carriers (known as Telstra) uses the 850MHz spectrum and all the others use the 2100MHz spectrum.

The customers on the 850 carrier report no problems while the others are getting the dropouts.

The customers on 850 are not on a 3G network, thus they are probably getting better coverage. 2100 MHZ is a totally different game.
post #16 of 66
On Office 2008:

Don't most colleges and universities have free Office for their students? So this would be tricking students into buying something they already have free access to?


Furthermore, isn't it fraudulent to call Office 2008 "Microsoft Office" when it has no VBR, no Solver, no Macros, no Microsoft Access, and crashes all the time?

Isn't it time Microsoft introduced Office for the Mac and not the watered-down trojan horse they are presenting passing off as "Office?"

If Word couldn't write any words, would it still be called Word for the Mac? Or would that be misrepresentation? They did the same with Excel. It's missing many critical features. Do students know that, and if so, why do they want Office? What possible value does it offer them?
post #17 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

That must be a GSM problem because no CDMA problems wirth Verizon in Manhatan. I guess that's why its so popular here.

One reason it is popular is because the normal GSM bands 900 MHZ, 1800 MHZ are used for something else in the US. The rest of the world uses 900 MHZ/1800 MHZ. Not to mention Qualcomm lobbying for its technology over GSM.
post #18 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post

I was responding to your comment about the previous phone on EDGE. Now you move on to tests of 3G. It was Walt Mossberg who complained of dropped calls in Manhattan.


My point was that dropped calls are dropped calls- and both versions have bad AT&T reception. And Walt Mossberg was not complaining- his calls actually dropped!
post #19 of 66
I just want to know what the heck "ongregating" means!

Sounds fun (and dirty)...
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post #20 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by bwik View Post

On Office 2008:

Don't most colleges and universities have free Office for their students? So this would be tricking students into buying something they already have free access to?


Furthermore, isn't it fraudulent to call Office 2008 "Microsoft Office" when it has no VBR, no Solver, no Macros, no Microsoft Access, and crashes all the time?

Isn't it time Microsoft introduced Office for the Mac and not the watered-down trojan horse they are presenting passing off as "Office?"

If Word couldn't write any words, would it still be called Word for the Mac? Or would that be misrepresentation? They did the same with Excel. It's missing many critical features. Do students know that, and if so, why do they want Office? What possible value does it offer them?

????? Microsoft owns Office and can't use its own name? What planet are you from?
Is it not Adobe Photshop, Lotus Notes, etc, etc??
post #21 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

That must be a GSM problem because no CDMA problems wirth Verizon in Manhatan. I guess that's why its so popular here.

"Can you hear me now?" I have read David Pogue and the test he did in Manhattan and more stories about the poor reception with AT&T compared to Verizon in Manhattan and on some college campuses. But, to make an accurate and realistic diagnosis of what is going on, is there a third party that actually does signal reception tests? Do they have comparisons between the major carriers?

I have had Verizon for many years and I will wait until the contract with AT&T is over and iPhone starts selling with CDMA chips! And on a side note, I am an avid Mac user and even that enthusiasm can't bring me over to AT&T if Verizon has been proven to be better for me so far. I have done quite a bit of traveling in the US on the road and it's rare that I didn't get any signal at all.
post #22 of 66
Just for a mutual understanding, we are talking about cell phones here and not hard lines. Dropped calls, botched handovers, ghost signals, multi-path, etc... are all par for the course with cell phones. From my own experience here in Finland which is arguably one the most advance countries when it comes to cell technology has network dropouts from time to time or poor reception. No network can guarantee 100% call completion or a 100% rate. It is what it is.
post #23 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapporobaby View Post

The customers on 850 are not on a 3G network [...]

They are in fact on a 3G network, see details below:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telstra#Telstra_Mobile

"Next G, Telstra's primary 3G UMTS mobile network, built between November 2005 and September 2006, opened in October 2006. [...]

The NextG network operating on the 850MHz band was built to replace Telstra's CDMA network which operated from 1999 until April 28, 2008. The 850 MHz band was chosen over the more common 2100 MHz band as it can cover much greater geographic distances for a lower overall investment"
post #24 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapporobaby View Post

For the sake of clarity, do you mean that no phone gets 100% reception for 100% of the time or that the strength indicator does not indicate full strength 100% of the time? Because my Nokia's get full strength where the iPhone is down a bar or two.

Phone indicates full signal strength 100% of the time.
post #25 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by zunx View Post

The day Mac gets 25% market share, Windows will be history in three years.

good joke!
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post #26 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by ascii View Post

They are in fact on a 3G network, see details below:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Telstra#Telstra_Mobile

"Next G, Telstra's primary 3G UMTS mobile network, built between November 2005 and September 2006, opened in October 2006. [...]

The NextG network operating on the 850MHz band was built to replace Telstra's CDMA network which operated from 1999 until April 28, 2008. The 850 MHz band was chosen over the more common 2100 MHz band as it can cover much greater geographic distances for a lower overall investment"

Nice catch. Didn't know that. Now I do.
post #27 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by calguy View Post

"Can you hear me now?" I have read David Pogue and the test he did in Manhattan and more stories about the poor reception with AT&T compared to Verizon in Manhattan and on some college campuses. But, to make an accurate and realistic diagnosis of what is going on, is there a third party that actually does signal reception tests? Do they have comparisons between the major carriers?

I have had Verizon for many years and I will wait until the contract with AT&T is over and iPhone starts selling with CDMA chips! And on a side note, I am an avid Mac user and even that enthusiasm can't bring me over to AT&T if Verizon has been proven to be better for me so far. I have done quite a bit of traveling in the US on the road and it's rare that I didn't get any signal at all.

Yes its been well documented that Verizon has better network coverage than AT&T. How good or bad coverage is within any given city really is more conjecture and opinion.

Its highly unlikely the iPhone will ever use CDMA chips. You will have to wait until Verizon switches to an LTE network.
post #28 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post

No phone indicates full signal strength 100% of the time.

Well, yeah. That is a given. If I am in a basement, I might get some reception but not 100%.
post #29 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapporobaby View Post

Just for a mutual understanding, we are talking about cell phones here and not hard lines. Dropped calls, botched handovers, ghost signals, multi-path, etc... are all par for the course with cell phones. From my own experience here in Finland which is arguably one the most advance countries when it comes to cell technology has network dropouts from time to time or poor reception. No network can guarantee 100% call completion or a 100% rate. It is what it is.

I think the problem here is that other phones on the same network are dropping calls a lot less often.

However, it's impossible from our perspective, with only anecdotal evidence to go on, to tell if that allegation (iPhone 3G is worse than other phones) is true.
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post #30 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

????? Microsoft owns Office and can't use its own name? What planet are you from?
Is it not Adobe Photshop, Lotus Notes, etc, etc??

I think you missed his point.

It wasn't the use of the word Microsoft that he's got a problem with, it's calling the product "Office", when it's so different from the Windows edition of "Office".

I don't agree with that stance though. It's not hard to determine what you're going to get (or not get ) before putting your dollars down.
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post #31 of 66
If the iPhone issue is a quality control problem (ie a production issue), Apple should be able to get it ironed out sooner rather than later.
post #32 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. H View Post

I think the problem here is that other phones on the same network are dropping calls a lot less often.

However, it's impossible from our perspective, with only anecdotal evidence to go on, to tell if that allegation (iPhone 3G is worse than other phones) is true.

I hear you. I am trying to remain positive but I am a bit worried that it might be a chip issue, and if so, how will Apple fix this.
post #33 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by amac4me View Post

If the iPhone issue is a quality control problem (ie a production issue), Apple should be able to get it ironed out sooner rather than later.

Great, they fix the next batch of phones but what about the ones that are in the hands of consumers now? They need reparation.
post #34 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

"Mostly always"- in one of the largest cities in the world?

You don't come off being too deeply knowledgeable in RF wave theory and the impedence created by multiple large, dense surface areas requiring a large redundancy of tower nodes just to get a virtual map of continuous coverage.

Now if Apple could not get good 3G Coverage in Eastern WA along the i-90 corridor then you could mock till the cows come home.
post #35 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapporobaby View Post

I hear you. I am trying to remain positive but I am a bit worried that it might be a chip issue, and if so, how will Apple fix this.

If its proven defective hardware, Apple would have to replace the defective phones. Which is why Apple will be in no rush to admit a hardware problem.
post #36 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post

If its proven defective hardware, Apple would have to replace the defective phones. Which is why Apple will be in no rush to admit a hardware problem.

While I agree that they would have to fix it, I think it would be best that a third party look into it as I really can not trust Apple to come clean about this. I just don't think they will.
post #37 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by sapporobaby View Post

While I agree that they would have to fix it, I think it would be best that a third party look into it as I really can not trust Apple to come clean about this. I just don't think they will.

Understandably Apple will look into every option to fix the problem before going to the extreme of replacing a million phones.

But if its proven hardware and Apple fixes it in newer phones, they will have no choice but to replace the older phones or risk a law suit for violating the phones warranty.
post #38 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by TenoBell View Post

Its highly unlikely the iPhone will ever use CDMA chips. You will have to wait until Verizon switches to an LTE network.

Thanks for the info. I just read this article regarding the switch over to LTE. http://www.infosyncworld.com/news/n/8637.html
The technical side of this requires a great deal of testing and so it should. And lets not forget that the extra bandwidths that will be available in 2009 will give the cellular networks more possibilities. They also allow for a greater distance for reception from a cell tower from what I have been reading.

So it may be a longer wait for the 4G network from Verizon and I'll have to wait until 2012. I am very hopefull that by then, Verizon will have the iPhone. It also makes sense that more refinements will have taken place regarding the iPhone, technical and esthetic. I wonder what version of sofware they will be up to then...v6?
post #39 of 66
Also hopefully by 2012 Verizon will have stopped nickel and dimeing for every service.
post #40 of 66
Quote:
Originally Posted by mdriftmeyer View Post

You don't come off being too deeply knowledgeable in RF wave theory and the impedence created by multiple large, dense surface areas requiring a large redundancy of tower nodes just to get a virtual map of continuous coverage.

Now if Apple could not get good 3G Coverage in Eastern WA along the i-90 corridor then you could mock till the cows come home.

You who are so knowledgeable- I happen to live in New York City and have never had a dropped call in 4 years from a CDMA Verizon phone. Mock this.
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