Consumer Reports changes stance, cannot recommend Apple's iPhone 4

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  • Reply 281 of 406
    chronsterchronster Posts: 1,894member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by drow View Post


    of all the survival disadvantages lefties already suffer, we're worried about whether they can sweaty-grip a phone, too? go eat peanuts.

    </troll>



    Well they're witches. If we don't appease them, satan knows what they'll do to us.
  • Reply 282 of 406
    carmissimocarmissimo Posts: 837member
    If Apple didn't realize what the problem is and genuinely believed they figured it out with that nonsense about the bars, then it looks like they really don't know what they're doing from an engineering perspective. On the other hand, if Apple knew the truth and put out that nonsense to buy time, they really don't know what they are doing from a PR perspective.



    The correct move would have been to announce the company is working on a solution. A detailed explanation of the phone's flaw would have been appropriate, leaving it up to customers to decide if that flaw was a deal-breaker in the short run, hence giving consumers the option of buying a phone now, knowing what they were getting into, or purchasing one later after the issue had been resolved.



    Nobody's perfect and we can excuse the occasional hiccup considering how complicated today's products have become but there is an expectation of some level of honesty. Frankly, considering how badly Apple has dealt with this mess, early adopters of the new phone deserve compensation of some sort. Apple needs to go into damage-control mode in a big way, come clean and root out those responsible for this mess, be it an engineering or PR issue, if not both.
  • Reply 283 of 406
    sacto joesacto joe Posts: 728member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mstone View Post


    That is why the CR report is bogus. If he just wanted to be a comedian, holding up a roll of duct tape, I don't trust him as a scientist.



    Exactly. This is not a joking matter, and to make a joke out of it is to suggest the tests were never really serious.



    Frankly, if CR doesn't come out with a LOT more detail about this report, I for one would be willing to join a class action lawsuit against them to acquire and publish that info.



    And if it's bogus, then heaven help CR!
  • Reply 284 of 406
    4G PROBLEMS???



    My 3G rececption is crappy. My whole family has ATT service with other phones and can make calls inside my house. I can' place calls or receive calls w/o immediate drops.



    I love the Iphone, but I need to think before wanting to upgrade to 4G
  • Reply 285 of 406
    mellomello Posts: 555member
    My reception has been better than all of my previous iPhones. For some reason the only bad

    reception that I have is at work. With my iPhone 4 I can actually use 3G & can make a phone call

    in the cafeteria. Something that I've never been able to do before. It does annoy me that my

    co-worker can use her phone in the elevator & parking structure with no problems connecting.

    Hopefully AT&T will finish their 850mhz upgrade for Milwaukee sometime this year.
  • Reply 286 of 406
    yuusharoyuusharo Posts: 311member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sacto Joe View Post


    Exactly. This is not a joking matter, and to make a joke out of it is to suggest the tests were never really serious.



    Frankly, if CR doesn't come out with a LOT more detail about this report, I for one would be willing to join a class action lawsuit against them to acquire and publish that info.



    And if it's bogus, then heaven help CR!



    I think the whole point of showing the duct tape was to demonstrate how stupidly simple the problem could have been fixed if Apple just added some sort of thin protection around the bands of the phone, preventing skin contact and reduce the reception loss while holding it in that position.



    You can't join a class action lawsuit to force someone to reveal something to you, by the way ~_~;.
  • Reply 287 of 406
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,570member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sacto Joe View Post


    ... Frankly, if CR doesn't come out with a LOT more detail about this report, I for one would be willing to join a class action lawsuit against them to acquire and publish that info. ...



    On exactly what grounds would you sue them? How would they have injured you personally?
  • Reply 288 of 406
    sacto joesacto joe Posts: 728member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by yuusharo View Post


    I think the whole point of showing the duct tape was to demonstrate how stupidly simple the problem could have been fixed if Apple just added some sort of thin protection around the bands of the phone, preventing skin contact and reduce the reception loss while holding it in that position.



    You can't join a class action lawsuit to force someone to reveal something to you, by the way ~_~;.



    I can join a class action lawsuit that their report has caused material damage to the price of the stock I own. In order to "defend" themselves they would need to make all the information available from their "tests".



    And frankly, I don't care what the "point" of the duct tape bit was. It demonstrates a serious lack of professionalism when it comes to releasing a report that can impact the sales of millions of phones.
  • Reply 289 of 406
    trumptmantrumptman Posts: 16,454member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DocNo42 View Post


    CR's conclusions still don't make sense as RF does not behave like electrical current. A simple piece of tape shouldn't make a difference.



    Besides, all that matters for me is real world performance vs. theoretical pontificating. The iPhine 4 beats the pants off of the 3Gs in actual usage - without a case. I haven't used on before and I have no intention of bulking up my phone now with useless plastic or rubber.



    Usually I'm the first one to knock others about being nitpicky but people (not just yourself) have gotten this wrong so many times that it is even starting to get on my nerves. The piece of tape simply insulates the antennas from each other. If they are joined then they don't stop working, they merely become most receptive to a different wavelength that AT&T nor any other cell carrier happens to be broadcasting on.



    I built several antennas for the digital television conversion and the concepts are all pretty much the same. Any antenna is a series of trade-offs. So is the one on the iPhone 4.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by geekdad View Post


    My thoughts exactly.

    I returned my iPhone 4G and cancelled the line it was on with AT&T.

    I have 2 other iphone 3Gs on the account that are not going away.

    I am a huge Apple supported.....search my posts and you will not see me putting them down. But they dropped the ball on this entire issue. It would be differnt if they stood up and took ownership but they are not doing that...they are running from it..

    Also they did not chage me any fees to return it as well. Nor did AT&T to cancell my line that was attached to the iPhone 4G

    BUT on another note i just bought a brand new 15" MBP i7 and it ROCKS!



    You should have just bought a case. Your time is likely worth more than the return and hassle will have cost you.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by thespaz View Post


    This is hilarious! I'm a HUGE Apple fanboy most of the time, but when I had an iPhone 4, I would constantly lose all data all together. I would sit there and try to download something, only to finally realize that I had my pinky finger partially covering the black seam. That's just not right, so I returned it. Do what is right... return the iPhone 4 until Apple figures out how to fix it. Until then, I'll be using my iPhone 3G because it works perfectly fine on 2.2.1.



    Even *I* can't defend Apple on this stupid mistake. They're hurting their image!



    Apple has made mistakes similar to this one before and will continue to do so in the future. It's sort of weird seeing how big the pool of Apple users has gotten and how much whining there is now. I've got my complaints about Apple but the level of sour grapes here is just odd. No product is perfect. All of them involve trade offs and becoming aware of them and purchasing a couple things to deal with them is pretty standard practice. Apple made the infamous hockey puck mouse which 90% of everyone immediately tossed away and replaced with a decent mouse. Apple continued to ship one button mice when two was the norm almost everywhere and again people just dealt with it. Apple killed the modem and the floppy and some people still needed them and thus dealt with it.



    I'm a leftie myself. If I want an iPhone, I'll need to buy a case. If you don't want to buy a case, hold it different or try Android. I've always tried alternatives and their sets of trade-offs are almost always worse than the Apple set of trade-offs.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


    While I agree that real world performance is more important than number of bars, your first statement is wrong. In my case, a piece of electrical tape (which is thinner than duct tape) reduced the signal loss - at least as measured by the number of bars.



    More importantly, will they test other phones with the same test method? This "iPhone signal drops" mania is ridiculous if they don't test other phones.



    You've hit a big and very important point. The iPhone shouldn't be alone in this endeavor. Every other smartphone should have to under go the same testing with attempts made to bridge antennas or alter reception characteristics.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Foo2 View Post


    Dear Apple: I will be happy if you demonstrate fairness to customers by giving credit for bumpers purchased and if you demonstrate honesty by bringing back Field Test Mode in the next iOS update.



    Good points, especially field test mode! Apple could make many people feel better by simply having some inexpensive case solutions endorsed or in stock.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by DasJetta View Post


    Not everyone wants to hold the freaking phone to their right ear. Holding it in my left hand to my left ear causes the palm of my hand to short out the antenna. I can't easily change how I hold the phone and still be comfortable with it. It is a very real and disturbing issue. Get over yourself.



    I have a lot of issues driving from the right seat. My car just doesn't handle very well or feel very comfortable when I drive this way. I'm stuck using the left seat for now. Buy a case. You don't have to buy an Apple case. You can buy something else. You can put on five cents worth of electrical tape.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mstone View Post


    That is why the CR report is bogus. If he just wanted to be a comedian, holding up a roll of duct tape, I don't trust him as a scientist. I have tested the phone myself, and yes the bars went down, however the calls do not drop here in my test lab. I do agree, the design is foolish. How it ever made it through quality control is beyond logic.



    Even if Apple is able to fix it 99.9% with whatever method they decide to implement, that will not stop the lawyers. Right now a small number of customers are having occasional problems with reception, but a large number of competitors and media companies are enjoying the the hell out of this.



    I think Apple will learn a valuable lesson here about why it is always better to be honest and not such a good idea to be a snob.



    Plenty of products have design trade-offs. I can't imagine a jury not understanding that.



    Quote:
    Originally Posted by drow View Post


    of all the survival disadvantages lefties already suffer, we're worried about whether they can sweaty-grip a phone, too? go eat peanuts.

    </troll>



    You know I was just looking into this and after a few searches about liquids that are insulators or non-conductive, I keep running across superglue. They actually do sell a clear liquid electrical "tape" that you apply with a brush and it dries clear, but the much easier solution would appear to simply be some super glue. It applies very clear and very thin. It costs less than a buck and isn't water soluble so it shouldn't wear away to easily. It also doesn't adhere well to glass so some over application might be easier to clean up or remove if it goes past the antenna band. I also remember back to my PC modding days where you could use pencil lead to change Athlon chips. They tried to stop this but superglue was the fix for that.



    I bet even if Apple decides to apply something, it wouldn't be much different from this.
  • Reply 290 of 406
    prof. peabodyprof. peabody Posts: 2,860member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Carmissimo View Post


    If Apple didn't realize what the problem is and genuinely believed they figured it out with that nonsense about the bars, then it looks like they really don't know what they're doing from an engineering perspective. On the other hand, if Apple knew the truth and put out that nonsense to buy time, they really don't know what they are doing from a PR perspective.



    The correct move would have been to announce the company is working on a solution. A detailed explanation of the phone's flaw would have been appropriate, leaving it up to customers to decide if that flaw was a deal-breaker in the short run, hence giving consumers the option of buying a phone now, knowing what they were getting into, or purchasing one later after the issue had been resolved.



    Nobody's perfect and we can excuse the occasional hiccup considering how complicated today's products have become but there is an expectation of some level of honesty. Frankly, considering how badly Apple has dealt with this mess, early adopters of the new phone deserve compensation of some sort. Apple needs to go into damage-control mode in a big way, come clean and root out those responsible for this mess, be it an engineering or PR issue, if not both.



    I think you are making the mistake of thinking that there is any real confusion between Apple and the experts over what the issue is. Or, that there is any difference at all between what Apple thinks the issue is and Consumer Reports thinks the issue is.



    In fact all these parties are actually in agreement and have all been saying the same thing. The phone will lose signal when you grip the antenna in a certain way. If you are in a low signal area, it might even drop the connection as a result.



    This is what Apple said in their statement, this is the same thing that Consumer Reports said in their first statement, and the exact same thing they said in this, their second statement on the matter. The only difference between what Consumer Reports said the first time, and the second time is that the second time they said they "couldn't recommend it," the second time.



    AFAICS there is no confusion over what the problem is, and there is no solution for the problem short of "not holding it that way" or using a case to cover the antenna. Apple's POV is that this is fine, others think this sucks, and *that* is the disagreement. There is no disagreement on facts, just on whether it sucks or not, or whether it's a big deal or not.



    Personally I side with Apple, others may not.
  • Reply 291 of 406
    bartbuzzbartbuzz Posts: 131member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ruel24 View Post


    You do understand that subsidized/unsubsidized - you still pay the same in the end, don't you? You're essentially making monthly payments on the phone when it's subsidized.



    I'm with you. I have Verizon and I'm happy with the service. I tried a Motorola Droid in the store and just was appalled by the crappy quality of the phone. The touchscreen was junk, the phone felt cheap, and Android wasn't near as responsive as my iPod Touch. I'll wait and see what happens. My current contract ends in April next year, so, I have time to wait and see what happens. I hate the thought of moving to AT&T or suffering through using a Droid. I really want to Droid to succeed, but so far, it's just like the PC market: crappy hardware in a race for the bottom. No thanks!



    With AT&T the iP4 costs $200 plus the contract costs. You pay (about) the same thing for a Droid. So aren't all smartphones subsidized? At least that's the way the mobile phone business works in the US.



    Your opinion of the Droid is the same as mine. It just looks and feels cheap. I am happy with my iTouch and flip phone until Verizon and Apple join hands.
  • Reply 292 of 406
    naboozlenaboozle Posts: 213member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by roehlstation View Post


    That strategy might not "break" the laws of physics per se.





    Activate the Omega-13 device!!
  • Reply 293 of 406
    sendmesendme Posts: 567member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Jerseymac View Post


    It is madness to own an expensive smart phone when it can't make simple telephone calls.






    Fact is, the iPhone 4 has better reception than any other cell phone on the market.
  • Reply 294 of 406
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,570member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sacto Joe View Post


    I can join a class action lawsuit that their report has caused material damage to the price of the stock I own. In order to "defend" themselves they would need to make all the information available from their "tests". ...



    I would not be surprised to discover that shareholders cannot initiate suits against 3rd parties for actions that may have caused their stock value to drop.
  • Reply 295 of 406
    prof. peabodyprof. peabody Posts: 2,860member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ruel24 View Post


    You do understand that subsidized/unsubsidized - you still pay the same in the end, don't you? You're essentially making monthly payments on the phone when it's subsidized ...



    Probably just being picky here, but this is actually not true. You pay more to the phone company in the contract by far than the cost of the phone plus the service.



    The very fact that Canada requires three year contracts and the US only two, and that the prices of the phone (adjusted for currency) are identical proves this. If the contract price equalled the full cost of the phone distributed over the time of the contract, then either the US iPhones are 30% too cheap or the Canadian iPhones are 30% too expensive. It can't logically be otherwise.



    Also, I bought my last iPhone full price (in Canada), from the Apple store, if I subtracted the contract price and distributed the rest out, I would have paid for the phone before the end of a single year on the contract. When I started the contract, I had to sign for three years but I got the subsidised price.



    If fido was actually being honest and fair with me, the contract would be up after one year, when the balance of the hardware was paid off, but instead they keep me paying for another two years after that. Anyone who thinks the subsidised phone model is anything but a money grab by the carriers or is in some way a "fair deal" is just not watching very closely.
  • Reply 296 of 406
    berpberp Posts: 136member
    Apple is creating Life out of technology. The iPhone 4, as the iPad, is engineered and designed as a projection of day-to-day Humanity. It breathes and pulsates in waves. It costs an arm and a leg because it is an arm and a leg. It has been built from the inside out as we have been, dna strand by dna strand until our senses start making sense of the whole.



    Organic we evolved, organic the iPhone better be. For better or worse. My arms cannot bend backward, neither can my fingers; I cannot swivel my head 180 degrees; I have limited vision: but I can feel things just fine and that keeps me alive and thriving. The iPhone partakes in an imperfect but highly adaptable journey through evolution of meaningful ends.



    Of course, with asymmetric alchemy comes fear of the unknown. It always did, as in the witch hunts of past centuries. And bitterness for the comfort zones left behind. Cold comfort indeed, for in Hell lies the belief that it should deservedly be host to your enemy. Let the threatening catharsis find its way through an echo chamber redemption!



    The antenna is sensitive to contact with the human hand and so it should be. As my hand feels the warmth or coldness of a brother's handshake, I tune my response on the adaptable me. I'm not a borg, nor a hermit, and neither am I an android. As a flesh and blood human being I've grown to rely on human nature's frail and fallible sagacity.



    There is nothing wrong with my antenna that I couldn't correct with the hand that beholds it. Kindred Antennas are known to keep in touch.
  • Reply 297 of 406
    bartbuzzbartbuzz Posts: 131member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


    That was my entire point. The person I was responding to said it was crazy to pay $800 for a new iphone because you can buy one for $200. I was pointing out the error in his logic.



    I just wasn't clear in my earlier comments. I realize that an unlocked iPhone costs more but I didn't know how iPhones were used outside the US. So it didn't make sense to pay $800 when you could get a subsidized iP4 for $200. If you buy an unlocked iP4 in Canada (or on eBay) and went with TMobile in the US, I assume the monthly usage costs are about the same. So you would pay more by not using AT&T. But before you jump on that logic remember that I said "assume."
  • Reply 298 of 406
    prof. peabodyprof. peabody Posts: 2,860member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by AmazingApple View Post


    My iPhone 4 will drop calls on que every time, no problem. It has been demonstrated with an Apple Genius and with AppleCare. I have tested several other phones at the same locations and at the same times and they do not suffer the same results as the iPhone 4. In the tests were iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, iPhone 3G, Motorolla RAZR. We also tested a Nokia, an LG, and a Samsung, but I didn't record the model numbers of those three.



    Bottom line is that my iPhone 4 performed well sitting on a table, but when picked up with two fingers anywhere on the sides, the call would drop in approximately 20 seconds. With all of the other phones we tested, not one call was dropped no matter how they were held. Also, data downloads can be halted with my iPhone 4. Could not get data to stop with the others.



    Dude. I just flat out don't believe you.



    What you are saying here seems strongly exaggerated. Your language is "loose" and just plain unbelievable, especially the part I bolded. Picking up an iphone with two fingers *anywhere* on the sides drops a call? I just don't believe you.



    Also, if you are in a bad signal area, your test results would make sense (except the exaggeration on the iPhone 4 part), because all the other phones have internal antennas compared to the iPhone 4's external one. This means that if you bought a case for your iPhone 4, or didn't hold it so that the antenna was shorted, then it would actually perform better than all the phones you tested.
  • Reply 299 of 406
    tulkastulkas Posts: 3,744member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by jragosta View Post


    That was my entire point. The person I was responding to said it was crazy to pay $800 for a new iphone because you can buy one for $200. I was pointing out the error in his logic.



    The question still stands. Why would you buy a contract free AT&T iPhone, if, in order for it to useable, you need to pay AT&T anyway, just not on a contract.



    If you use the contract free iphone for 2 years, you have paid almost the same as the subsidized customer, in fees, but also paid $600 for the privilege of walking away from the service. Of course, the contracted customer could do the same but only pay $~300-400 to terminate their contract.
  • Reply 300 of 406
    rbonnerrbonner Posts: 635member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Tulkas View Post


    Why go through the trouble of doing the return and getting the 3GS? Just buy a case. I am not being flippant. Believe me, I recognize that this is a real problem. Buying a case is not a solution, it is a work around. At the least, Apple should just give away the bumpers. But, the fact is that you already have one. It seems like less trouble to just get a case than to trade down to a 3GS.



    I haven't bought one yet (not yet in Canada). I will have to decide whether to buy it as is or wait for them to fix the problem. But, if I already had one, I would probably just buy a case (and resent that I had to).



    I agree, but am having the prox sensor issue as well, which is a deal breaker.
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