Growing attention on iPhone 4 signal issues presents risk for Apple

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  • Reply 81 of 192
    bartbuzzbartbuzz Posts: 131member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by sherrod View Post


    At home where I normally have 2-3 bar signal my iPhone 4 drops calls 100% of the time when I hold it in what I consider to be a normal fashion in my left hand with the left lower corner pressed against my palm and my thumb on the volume buttons.



    How do you hold it so that you can adjust the volume and type on the keypad without touching the left corner?



    Prior to getting the iPhone 4 I had a 3G for a year followed by a 3GS for another year. So I have two years experience using iPhones at home. The 3G and 3GS never dropped a call at home.



    On a different topic, my wife has so many problems with dropped calls because of the face touching problem that she is coping by using the phone in speaker (conference) mode. She had iPhones for two years before the iPhone 4 and didn't have this problem.



    Apple's handling of this issue makes BP look like a responsible citizen. This is not a "non-issue", and it is ridiculous to tell cell phone customers that they can't hold the phone in their left hands or that they have to use speaker/conference mode to avoid touching their face. If any other cell phone that this problem the company would be forced to have a recall.



    If Steve Jobs were running BP he would issue a press statement saying "The spill is a non-issue. All activity in the Gulf causes some shore disturbance. You just need to learn how to walk on the beach to avoid the oil. We have determined that less than 1% of the world's shorelines are affected by the spill, if you don't like the Gulf then vacation elsewhere."





    Please tell me you went to bed late last night and just didn't get a good night's sleep. Comparing the BP oil spill catastrophe to the iPhone reception problem is maybe the dumbest analogy I've ever heard. But then I haven't heard all your analogies.
  • Reply 82 of 192
    plagenplagen Posts: 151member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by StLBluesFan View Post


    My god.



    1) CR did publish their data on their web site for subscribers, as they do with all their reports. Subscibe or buy the mag when it comes out, better still, visit the library.



    2) Multiple parties (including CR, duh) have tested the iPhone 4 against other phones and experienced dropped calls where under the same conditions other phones did not. Not just signal bar drop, dropped calls. And standing in the same spot other phones did not.



    3) Did you even look at how CR tested? No, right? You admitted that earlier when claiming the didn't publish the reults. Why are these results bogus (aside from the fact that don't like them becasue your devoted to Apple?) What should have been differently in a lab? I'm betting you loved CR and their earlier recommendation to buy. Unfortunate for you, huh, that CR decided to to more extensive tests when the reports of reception problems continued. Of course it wasn't objective testing, BECAUSE YOU DON'T LIKE THE RESULTS.



    Do you, you personally, have an iPhone 4G?

    Have you, you personally, experienced a call drop due to the "issue"?
  • Reply 83 of 192
    mazda 3smazda 3s Posts: 1,613member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Constable Odo View Post


    Today's share price drop is a sad commentary on the strength of Apple. The media can so easily start a panic in share selling even though the bottom line of Apple hasn't changed one bit. The iPhone is still in tremendous demand, as is the iPad. There are a lot of factions out there trying to bring down Apple. Apparently, they don't even have to try that hard to send the company reeling. I'm expecting analysts to start downgrading Apple, any day now.



    Wait a minute... so Apple should get a pass if one of their products are proven to have a defect?



    You're thinking like a stockholder and not a customer who is having problems.
  • Reply 84 of 192
    sacto joesacto joe Posts: 895member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Mr.Scott View Post


    So true. The bottom line is the investors ,you (I assume) and me, are not happy with the way this issue is going stock wise or for the image towards Apple. Granted it's a good time to buy but don't like taking a hit on my future. Not all eggs in this basket, but still eggs and they're fragile. Make like a Champ Apple and get this under control.



    I own (for me) a considerable amount of Apple stock. The last thing I'm worried about is the stock price, since I'm holding long (think years).



    I don't see this as being out of control. I see this as being a molehill being falsely portrayed as a mountain by those who have something to gain by trying to sully Apple's reputation for quality.



    And I see it failing completely to do that.
  • Reply 85 of 192
    plagenplagen Posts: 151member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sacto Joe View Post


    I own (for me) a considerable amount of Apple stock. The last thing I'm worried about is the stock price, since I'm holding long (think years).



    I don't see this as being out of control. I see this as being a molehill being falsely portrayed as a mountain by those who have something to gain by trying to sully Apple's reputation for quality.



    And I see it failing completely to do that.



    Totally agree!
  • Reply 86 of 192
    ghostface147ghostface147 Posts: 1,629member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Plagen View Post


    BS!!! I WAS in Houston last week! Using the phone for several days in different areas. A dropped bar is a problem??? The calls go through and the reception quality is amazing!



    Maybe you and I don't go the same areas. I live in Houston and can reproduce it every now and then, depending on conditions at that precise location I am at. At my apt, I can reproduce it to go down to no bars. The funny part is when I can do the same exact thing 10 minutes later in the same spot and the signal goes up 1 bar.



    The problem is real. Here at the office where I work, it won't drop bars no matter what I do. Granted I work in an office building where there is a cell tower right next to me, but I notice the signal loss goes from -51 to -80 by covering it. That is still within the 5 bar limit.
  • Reply 87 of 192
    sacto joesacto joe Posts: 895member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by StLBluesFan View Post


    CR did publish their data on their web site for subscribers, as they do with all their reports. Subscibe or buy the mag when it comes out, better still, visit the library.



    I have absolutely no intention of re-subscribing to them, especially after this. But feel free to tell us what data was published on their web site. I promise to give it an objective hearing.
  • Reply 88 of 192
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,854member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sacto Joe View Post


    WHAT 'bunker mentality"? They've acknowledged a problem, and they've said that a fix is on the way.



    The "bunker mentality" is hype being created by those trying to build a mountain out of a mole-hill.



    And in the long run, when Apple comes out with a fix, they'll have a TON of free publicity. They'll be back-ordered from now to Xmas!



    If Apple actually produces a fix for the seam bridging issue, and they have not announced that they will, only that they will change the display of bars to be analogous to signal strength, which is a separate issue, then they may come out of this ok. But that's if they can do that in a timely fashion. (It may be possible to fix in software, given that it doesn't seem to affect all phones.) The bunker mentality is in just keeping quiet and letting the story run away from them. This will damage their reputation. The only question is how badly, and for how long. You can't just allow your competitors and a media interested in sensationalizing a story control how it plays out in the meantime, especially when we are in a news lull with Congress not in session, the world cup over, and nothing dramatic happening with the Gulf oil spill, you have to actively manage it.
  • Reply 89 of 192
    anonymouseanonymouse Posts: 6,854member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by winst View Post


    I still think there is a chance for a software fix: For example, if the software can detect a signal drop due to the "death grip", then disable the WiFi antenna and re-process the 3G signal.



    No good. What if you are on a call and want to access the web? You're going to have to do that at 3G speeds even though you have WiFi available?
  • Reply 90 of 192
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by ghostface147 View Post


    Maybe you and I don't go the same areas. I live in Houston and can reproduce it every now and then, depending on conditions at that precise location I am at. At my apt, I can reproduce it to go down to no bars. The funny part is when I can do the same exact thing 10 minutes later in the same spot and the signal goes up 1 bar.



    The problem is real. Here at the office where I work, it won't drop bars no matter what I do. Granted I work in an office building where there is a cell tower right next to me, but I notice the signal loss goes from -51 to -80 by covering it. That is still within the 5 bar limit.



    I live in houston too and I can get it to drop a bar or two (from 5) in my apartment, but the odd thing is that I can't get anything to happen in my office where I have 1 bar. hell I just tried it and it picked up a bar. It's weird, but I've never been able to get it to go to searching
  • Reply 91 of 192
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Plagen View Post


    Do you, you personally, have an iPhone 4G?

    Have you, you personally, experienced a call drop due to the "issue"?



    Yes, I purchased mine on launch day, Sacramento, CA, after standing in line for four hours. Yes, I drop about 90% of my calls by holding the phone just like I've held every other cell phone I've owned, including my 3GS which doesn't do this... So now what?



    Just because it's not an issue for everyone, doesn't make it a non-issue...
  • Reply 92 of 192
    sacto joesacto joe Posts: 895member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by anonymouse View Post


    If Apple actually produces a fix for the seam bridging issue, and they have not announced that they will, only that they will change the display of bars to be analogous to signal strength, which is a separate issue, then they may come out of this ok. But that's if they can do that in a timely fashion. (It may be possible to fix in software, given that it doesn't seem to affect all phones.) The bunker mentality is in just keeping quiet and letting the story run away from them. This will damage their reputation. The only question is how badly, and for how long. You can't just allow your competitors and a media interested in sensationalizing a story control how it plays out in the meantime, especially when we are in a news lull with Congress not in session, the world cup over, and nothing dramatic happening with the Gulf oil spill, you have to actively manage it.



    Have you ever heard of the trial lawyer who asked the defendant to answer the question: "Have you stopped beating your wife? Answer yes or no!"



    Apple has responded, and just because you don't like the deliberate manner they are taking in dealing with this doesn't make you right and them wrong. I suggest you take a couple of deep breaths and calm down.



    And we frankly don't know what all will be included in the fix, just like we really don't know what the issue is. Is it a lack of passivation in some of the stainless steel? Is it a factor of the electrolytes in the sweat of certain individuals?



    And most importantly, is it a trade-off, where you can have increased reception if you hold the phone a certain way but decreased reception if you hold the phone another way?

    And if that's the case, then one person might be willing to accept that trade-off, and another person might not. The solution would then be pretty simple: don't buy the phone if you don't like the trade-off.
  • Reply 93 of 192
    tulkastulkas Posts: 3,757member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sacto Joe View Post


    WHAT 'bunker mentality"? They've acknowledged a problem, and they've said that a fix is on the way.



    The "bunker mentality" is hype being created by those trying to build a mountain out of a mole-hill.



    And in the long run, when Apple comes out with a fix, they'll have a TON of free publicity. They'll be back-ordered from now to Xmas!



    What bunker mentality? Let's draw you a pciture:



    1) They acknowledged one problem, the bars display algorithm but did so in a less than honest manner. They said they were stunned and surprised to find they were over reporting signal strength, when in fact they had publicly released a 'fix' in 2008 that specifically added over reporting of signal strength.

    2) They failed to acknowledge the more significant problem of actual signal degradation.

    3) The only communications, up until the Letter, was to informally say users were holding it wrong. That is just insulting.

    4) They are actively wiping any trace of the Consumers Report review from the support pages.

    5) After respected publications like AnandTech and CR publish widely read articles about the antenna problem(s) there is still no comment.



    Exactly what would they have to do for you to see it as a bunker mentality? If they start sand bagging 1 Infinite Loop, will that convince you?
  • Reply 94 of 192
    mazda 3smazda 3s Posts: 1,613member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Sacto Joe View Post


    I own (for me) a considerable amount of Apple stock. The last thing I'm worried about is the stock price, since I'm holding long (think years).



    I don't see this as being out of control. I see this as being a molehill being falsely portrayed as a mountain by those who have something to gain by trying to sully Apple's reputation for quality.



    And I see it failing completely to do that.



    So then what does it take? The defect is there -- it's just that it affects people to varying degrees (depending on how strong of a signal area you're in).



    No company is infallible, and if Apple has been shown to have a defective product, common sense would dictate that the problem be AT LEAST acknowledged by Apple formally. Apple has NOT acknowledged that the iPhone 4 has an antenna reception issue; they have acknowledged that the formula they use to display bars is wrong.



    As for how it affects Apple's stock price, I'm sure that people who are actually having problems don't really give a s**t about the stock price -- they want a functioning product.
  • Reply 95 of 192
    sacto joesacto joe Posts: 895member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by shapesNforms View Post


    Yes, I purchased mine on launch day, Sacramento, CA, after standing in line for four hours. Yes, I drop about 90% of my calls by holding the phone just like I've held every other cell phone I've owned, including my 3GS which doesn't do this... So now what?



    Just because it's not an issue for everyone, doesn't make it a non-issue...



    Then take the frigging phone back for a full refund, and quit whining about it.
  • Reply 96 of 192
    jon tjon t Posts: 131member
    A few points to ponder:



    1. It is clear that no-one who has an iPhone 4 is rushing to return it. Even if they think they have the issue.



    2. The issue will be fixed - as always happens with these occasional glitches.



    3. The positive impact from this huge publicity when the resolution comes, could be ASTRONOMICAL for iPhone 4 sales.



    So, look out all the Apple naysayers, you may be shooting yourselves in both feet!
  • Reply 97 of 192
    tt92618tt92618 Posts: 444member
    I don't get the vitriol being directed, here, against people reporting a problem or who are dissatisfied with their phone. Whether you agree or not, they are experiencing an issue.



    I ordered (and am still waiting for) an i4, but before I did so I did spend some time testing the issue informally in the Apple store by holding the phones in different ways and observing the effects on the reported signal strengths. I found that I could make the i4 drop several bars simply by bridging the lower left antenna gap with my finger and holding it there for around 30 seconds - It happened every time. By cupping the phone in my palm, I could get the bars to drop all the way to 1.



    I recognize that's hardly scientific, but you have to realize that this was in the Apple store, where they have micro-cells to bump signal strength. Imagine that out in the 'real world'.



    So listen - to those of you who want to trash talk the folks who have insisted this really is an issue - can you identify a single other variant of iPhone that you can reliably attenuate like that simply by placing a finger on the housing of the phone? I bet you can't. In simple terms, that means the iPhone 4 has a problem, like it or not. Trash talking the people who recognize it and say so is just immature - the adult equivalent of a tantrum. If you poll 100 consumers and ask them 'is it ok that you can make this happen with just one finger', I'm guessing the majority will see it as a problem. So, calling them all stupid and stomping all over their concerns, imperiously insisting that they are 'holding it wrong', etc... just infuriates people and it isn't exactly the best way to build brand loyalty. So, thank goodness some of you guys aren't in charge at Apple.



    As I said, I ordered one anyway. I think there IS a problem, based on my own informal tests... but my own analysis involved asking if it is a 'problem' that is livable? Is the rest of what the phone offers 'worth it'? In my estimation, it is... and I'm fine getting a case and being careful how I hold it. But some people won't arrive at that same conclusion, and if Apple doesn't deal with such concerns in the correct way, it really could create problems for them in the near term. That's reality - aspersions along the lines of 'stop living in your mom's basement' and the like don't change it.



    The real issue, here, isn't that the phone may have some problems related to its unique antenna design - the real problem is how Apple is approaching and dealing with those problems. That response is what will turn this either into a non-issue, or a big issue.
  • Reply 98 of 192
    kedakeda Posts: 722member
    Technical issues aside, I am shocked by the ineptitude with which Apple has handled this damaging PR situation. From Jobs' initial statement about "improper grip" to the open letter blaming a "totally wrong" algorithm, the company has projected an image of smugness and disregard for it's customers. Instead of engaging affected users on their forums or issuing a response to any of the headline grabbing stories, Apple is allowing the talk of hardware deficiencies to grow.



    I am a long-time Apple customer, who has wanted an iPhone for years. Now I am out of contract and ready to buy, but am hesitating on pulling the trigger. Why? Because even though I want to, I don't believe Apple's assertion that a software patch will make this problem away.



    When I have heard the topic of the iPhone come up in real-life (offline) conversations, the talk immediately turned to the problems that the phone has. There were no iPhone4 owners present on any of the occasions, but each one ended by people agreeing that it was not a good idea to buy right now. If Apple doesn't get control of things soon, people will decide to delay or cancel a buying decision because of the negative word-of-mouth that this story is generating.



    Fair or not, Apple has a real problem on its hands.
  • Reply 99 of 192
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by amature geek View Post


    I am really sick of hearing this. A case does not fix the issue. I bought the supposedly top of the line phone with the expectation that it would work without changing its appearance. A case is not a fix!



    So have you returned it? i.e. are you having any actual troubles?



    I've read all about this issue - and assume it's somewhat true, in that when you touch these bits of the antenna the signal is lowered...



    However, I'm still buying in Canada when they get released...as I'll use a case anyway or not hold it like that!



    Still the best iPhone experience around I bet...can hardly wait (I'm on a 3G presently and it's slowwwww)



    :-)
  • Reply 100 of 192
    antkm1antkm1 Posts: 1,441member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Plagen View Post


    Do you, you personally, have an iPhone 4G?

    Have you, you personally, experienced a call drop due to the "issue"?



    and your point? What difference does it make to have owned and experienced a problem that obviously many people are having. We don't know how many but it seems to be a lot, since it's being reported on a reputable source like CR.



    I'm so tired of hearing this statement on the blogs, this is a known hardware issue that many people are experiencing. The point post-ers are trying to make is that Apple (at this point) needs to address this issue, and not simply with a band-aid (aka, buy a case). Whether someone personally experience the problem is mute.
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