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back to article Apple spews Judas Phone signal bar 'fix' to world+dog

Apple has released the promised iOS update designed to improve the way the Judas Phone displays signal strength bars – and fool fanbois into thinking there's no problem with the company's antenna design. iOS 4.0.1 offers the new formula not only on the Judas Phone, but also on the iPhone 3GS and the iPhone 3. According to a …

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Jobs Horns

How stupid do they think we are?

Seriously? As a mac user I'm rapidly losing confidence in a company that seems to believe it can brush off a serious design flaw with a clearly bullshit software fix. Do they really believe that anyone with an ounce of technical know-how will believe this? This is why I bought an HTC and why my next notebook won't be apple. Not as pretty but at least it'll be honest...

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WTF?

iPhone Problems

What's weird is that I own an iPhone 4 and although I noticed the bars go down after a very much impromptu test I did, I have experienced (in comparison to my old iPhone 3G) no dropped calls nor degradation of call quality or data signal. In fact the phone has performed very well and I would normally at this point be singing it's praise from the rooftops... but the media has actually made me believe that the Apple is evil and that the iPhone has a, as you say, serious design flaw. I find myself questioning my purchase of the phone and not recommending it where I usually would, it just shows you how powerful the media is, when even though I HAVE the phone and have experienced NO problems I'm still led to believe that my phone is buggered!

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Jobs Halo

UK

Well, here's a view from Manchester UK. I would echo fully what the poster says about his iPhone 4. I can't find a fault with it. It's way better than my 3G which I changed it from. I don't doubt for a moment that there's an antenna problem but I can only go on my own experience which is good.

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Jobs Horns

Isn't this fraud?

Now I ANAL but this looks to me like pure and simple fraud.

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FAIL

Last I checked...

So, they're admitting to fraudulantly inflating their cell phone's reception bars to "appear" to have a superior antenna design and resulting reception... Oh, sorry, a "software bug" improperly calculated extra bars... Yeah, "Look I get great reception! Buy an iPhone!" BS.

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Silver badge

You're probably right

Fraud isn't a single thing in British law but the general principle is deception to gain an advantage. Of course, it's possible after this many years isolated from a critical press that Apple actually believe what they're saying, negating the deception...

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Jobs Horns

Deception to gain an advantage

Apple: "Our phone gets a signal where others don't"

Users: "My phone gets 3 bars where my old nokia got 1"

prospective user: "Ooh, that iPhone thing works really well as a phone- 2 extra bars! I'll bet it works well in the office. I'll buy that."

Apple (now): "Holy shit, it's the fraud squad!"

Also, next week for Android is a signal-o-meter with 15 divisions. Just to piss off the Appletards.

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MrT
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Stop

So what we need...

... is a simple poll to see if iPhone 4 still drops calls like they were hot bricks.

Yes/No answer, extend to owners of patched 3GS too, just to see if it makes any real-world difference.

Shame they can't retro-install an active desktop to show the signal bars full-screen behind whatever level of Angry Birds the owner is playing.

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We fucked up, but we think we can pull the wool over your eyes!

Come on, do Apple really think they can full the average iPhone user with that excuse??? Actually, I think they can and will.

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Linux

To be Transparent then ...

To be Transparent and to show that we can actually trust Steve Jobs, would he be so kind as to release the source code so that we can be the judge of how critical a mistake has been made. Lets be honest this is a lame excuse to justify the billions that they have harvested from the iComputer community. When will they learn, Steve Jobs does not care how good something is, all he cares about is touching your pocket. Cant wait for Android to be released in New Zealand.

http://www.theregister.co.uk/Design/graphics/icons/comment/linux_32.png

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WTF?

Everybody seems surprised..

Obviously, this "fix" of theirs is a piece of shit -- of course, a software flaw would only appear when you hold a device in a particular way *rolls eyes*.

However, if you bought this, you bought what Apple makes -- devices that do not do anything more than any of the other devices, but they are beautifully wrapped and fool you into thinking that they are better than the others.

If you, a consumer, bought the iPhone 4, you must've either known this (there is nothing wrong with accepting it, but you must then also accept consequences), or you are hopeless.

This fix is a perfect fit for the Apple tradition -- making you believe something is better than it actually is.

Now you act surprised when they do something slightly more obviously retarded than usual?

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Heart

Hah "Judas Phone"

Love it.

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Thumb Up

Agreed

Still makes me chuckle when I see it.

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Thumb Up

Another one

Im in the same boat with a grin everytime I see it

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Silver badge

Judas?

More like "Peter Phone" - hasn't Peter denied having any knowledge of Jesus not once but three times right after Jesus had been arrested at Gethsemane?

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A mighty voice rang out saying...

Just change your disciples. It's no big deal.

Sent from my iSaiah

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Thumb Up

Cover your butts.

The fanbois are attacking with their big red thumbs. GULP.

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Who are more upset here?

The fanbois, or the anti-Apple crew?

If only the world was powered by righteous indignation and froth and spittle from the mouth, then we'd never have an energy crisis again.

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Anonymous Coward

@world powered by righteous indignation and froth and spittle

In a sense it is. The people who make the laws seem to be elected that way. The oil companies and related concerns may evade much of said Law but not all of it.

Or maybe it is powered more by the see-no-evil brigade because of what they enable the flim-flam division to get away with?

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Gates Horns

Software Fix ... actually, could be easily done.

Considering that most people wouldn't be using WiFi *and* UMTS at the same time during a call and the apple multitasking is pretty crap anyway, surely the easy answer is to power OFF the WiFi antenna circuit (via software) every time a call is in progress..?

$10 says that's either in the software update, or else Steve owes me millions of dollars for a viable fix with recalling the phones. Hey, maybe I should quickly take out a patent on that! <chuckle>

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Paris Hilton

The prioblem is HW, not software

Turning of wifi will do didly squat. The problem is purely one of antenna design - HW. Cant be fixed in SW.

Paris she must have designed the antenna..

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Boffin

Re-do your physics classes

Antenna's shape determines the impedance against a particular wavelength. Different shape (determined by the parts that are electrically conductive) means different resonant frequency and different impedance for your cell phone signals. Aka trouble. Not much to do with the antennae transmitting at the same time.

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Thumb Down

No

That would knock out any potential use of Facetime.

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Thumb Down

So in other words...

By their own admission, iPhone reception is shite.

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Paris Hilton

just installed it.

my bars are bigger, but my esteem seems to have shrunk.

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Really?

How odd, your bars are supposed to be smaller.

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This may have been covered elsewhere...

But doesn't that statement read as 'The signal was always shit, we've decided that to admit to lying about it is is far cheaper and easier than addressing the issue that the bottom line is: that the thing is beautiful to behold, but doesn't work properly, although its slim design and robust metal case makes it ideal for sliding under wobbly table legs' ?

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Pint

Apple is responding faster than MS!

TWO months in and Apple is in some way responding to the issue. How many YEARS has it taken M$ to finally correct the Xbox 360 RROD? Sheesh, all the hystrionics! (El Reg included) Remain caml, take a deep breath and have a little self control, it's not the end of the world.

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Huh?

Oh, lying about the problem is okay, as long as you're "responding to the issue."

Fanbois...

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Silver badge

You're an idiot

Apple is clearly fobbing people off.

Microsoft fixed the 360 problem so many mobo versions ago I've lost count.

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Flame

None

MS honoured the warranties and even paid shipping both ways. On top of that, they extended warranties where necessary.

Keep living in your dreamworld fanboi.

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Anonymous Coward

You missed a word

MS /eventually/ honoured the warranties and extended them.

Initially they ignored/denied the problem and made people pay to have their consoles fixed.

Yes, I know they refunded those repairs at a later date.

I don't think either company is a candidate for the customer service gold standard award, though.

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I've just installed it

and i don't know what it's done, but the signal still drops a bar when i hold it, even with a case. I'm a right handed weirdo who holds it lefty, so that i can use my good hand to touch the screen

I now also have the added bonus that it randomly changes between 1 and 5 bars every few mins, even if i'm not touching it.

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Silver badge

Yup

Pick it up and it goes from four bars to 'No-service' in thirty seconds flat.

Kudos to Apple, I'm pretty sure my phone turns into a brick *even faster* after installing this update.

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Anonymous Coward

Learn to hold a phone

Learn how to hold a phone; it's not that big of a deal.

Sent from my iPhone

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Joke

Re: Learn to hold a phone

Let me correct that for you:

"Learn how to hold a phone; it's not that big of a deal.

Sent from my iP"

Because of course your signal will die...

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Joke

Dropped signals

L_ar_ _o _old a P_one_ it_s _o_ T_at _ig o_ a De_l

S_n_ f_om m_ iP_on_

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Do tell how you hold it "properly"?

No of my previous mobile telephonic devices had to be held "properly" therefore Apple are shite. Period. Or in the Queen's English, full stop.

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g e
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BWHAAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Sent from my Android phone

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Stop

not a fix in any way, but..

.. the issue was most definitely exacerbated because of the way the iphone was calculating the signal strength in bars: if there was no visible feedback, people would just say calls were sometimes dropped -- just like they've been doing for past iphones.. there's definitely an issue, but people's perception of its severity has a lot to do with how many bars the signal decreases. i'd say they're fixing people's perception of the issue.

i can't understand how a company that usually pays so much attention to detail and PR lets something this huge slip through the cracks, though. I can't believe they didn't know about the signal strength issue, so I can't understand that they didn't "fix" the bar calculating algorithm (which was too optimistic to begin with). The following reactions from apple were pretty bad as well... let's see if they manage to somehow fix things tomorrow.

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Go

This is a step forward (possibly the first of 12)

Apple basically stated that this hubub is based on a misperception caused by their faulty formula for calculating+exaggerating the signal strength bars, and rather pointedly directed its apology towards "any anxiety we may have caused."

Apple has also resolutely maintained that the wireless performance on the iPhone 4 is the best ever, and has never acknowledged that there is any flaw in the hardware.

So now, Apple will solve what *it* perceives to be the root of the problem, and people will then observe 1-2 bar drops instead of 4-5 bar drop when they hold the phone "in a certain way," as Apple puts it.

Ultimately, this comes down to dropped calls, and those are measurable. If Apple is in denial about the nature of the problem, this patch throws out their Valium supply.

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Jobs Horns

Why would ANYONE believe Jobs or Apple?

Apple has basically stated ...

So what? They are liars.

iCrap 4 might be 'the best ever' but that just means that versions 1, 2 and 3 were worse. RF measurements are expressed in numbers not self-serving phrases.

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Troll

Shock and awe

It still isn't fixed, despite their Snake Oil attempt.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AXYBXQQYgNs&feature=player_embedded

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Gold badge

Old "bars" seemed reasonble to me,,,

I'm not even going to go over how this doesn't fix the problem, everyone knows that.

But... I saw a table comparing "bars" to dbm signal strength, and the old "bars" seemed reasonable to me. I can't speak for AT&T, I hear they have poor voice quality with a rather strong signal. But with Verizon, with my present phone 2, 3, 4, 5 bars are all so strong, I have no effect on voice quality right down to 1 bar (and no effect on data speeds either), and usually 0 bars is OK. I'd actually *prefer* a scale like the old IPhone, my not too informative "0 bars" would cover up through 2 bars, and 1 bar would show as about 3 bars. (Then 4 and 5 bars would cover the really strong signals.)

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Boffin

Power and Noise-to-Ratio

There are other variables that affect your calls. The lower the signal strength, the more power your handset will need to use for transmission. Another thing is that your handset might be better in handling low signals, which the iPhone 4 has been shown is capable of doing.

Having a handset where 1 bar is the threshold of "gonna lose the call" vs. one that "2 bars drops calls" ... I'd rather have the one where 1 bar is the call-losing one. Why? Because I can know in advance if I'm straying into a low signal zone.

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hmmm....

Update applied. Phone sitting on table = 4 bars, phone in hand = 1 bar. Nice patch....not

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LPF

OK quick question

In which country are these dropped class happening? is it all over the world or only in that glorious paradise for mobiles phones known as the USA?

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Silver badge

UK as well

I'm on O2 and the problem is as bad as ever after the patch.

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FAIL

Verdict

What a load of TOSH!!

Before the update i have 5 bar 3G Signal on Orange UK... when i just touch the left corner band it went down to 1 Bar of just GPRS....

After the update i have only 3 bars of 3G signal and when i touch the left corner band it goes down to 1 Bar of GPRS.....

I'll just have to wish for a recall or something tomorrow.... I'll wish in one hand and crap in the other and see which gets full first....... Your answers on a postcard...

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