back to article Apple antenna guru 'warned Steve Jobs' over Judas Phone

Apple's senior antenna expert told Steve Jobs during the "early design phase" of the iPhone 4 that the handset's exterior antennas could cause dropped calls, according to a report citing a person familiar with the matter. Bloomberg reports that Apple senior engineer Ruben Caballero warned the company's management that the …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Flame

    Ouch, but haven't we been here before?

    Sounds like Microsoft and the known Xbox problems.

    http://games.venturebeat.com/2008/09/05/xbox-360-defects-an-inside-history-of-microsofts-video-game-console-woes/

    I suspect the response was similar "our customers are too stupid to care about that, watch them queue up time and time again to buy the same crap regardless".

    Ironic as the aptly timed Xbox Slim comes out tomorrow ready for morons prepared to part with even more money for after the expired warranty RROD units die again...

    A fool and his money......

    1. Brian 59
      FAIL

      Obvious Ps3 fanboy

      Well apart from the fact that MS will fix/replace an xbox 2 years after warrenty expires, why let facts get in the way of MS bashing eh. Unlike my mates PS3 which had the Sony version of RROD, the flashing red light of death which occured a few weeks after it refusing to play some DVDs and all games. Cost money to call Sony who offered to fix/replace it for 130 quid but were generous in giving a 3 month warrenty (sarcasm). He, wrongly in my opinion, opted to buy a new one so I opened the old one up to find it burnt in numerous places.

      1. Nick Ryan Silver badge

        Sale of Goods act

        Next time just throw the "Sale of Goods act" at them. If it's not fit for purpose - i.e. doesn't do what it's meant to do or doesn't last a reasonable amount of time then the *seller* must replace it or recompense you. Note, this is the seller - it's not the original manufacturer, so when the store tells you that it's nothing to do with them and you have to go to the manufacturer, they are lying and breaking the law.

        Naturally this applies to both XBOXen and PS3s...

      2. Andy Jones
        FAIL

        Obviously an MS X-Box fanboy

        Ok, lets start with the fact that people have X-boxes that fail multiple times. The first one fails it is replaced. The second fails it is replaced. The third fails ... etc etc. You hear one excuse about them failing but then another excuse appears - ie they fail in a different way.

        I know 7 people who have x-boxes that have failed. All of them from general use. There are also countless stories of them failing across the internet. Microsoft extended the warranty because the x-box quality is a massive disaster for the company that they were FORCED to do it.

        I know 1 person who has had a PS3 fail. Just one out of all the PS3 people I know. IT DID NOT FAIL FROM GENERAL USE. Instead he thinks it is because of his son, who has the habit of turning the console off by just unplugging it from the wall. That is it! One fail, and not from the Yellow Light of Death.

        Yes, I know that the Yellow Light of Death exists because it has been confirmed by Sony. But ... as I keep telling the sad X-Box fanboy who sits opposite me when in his desperation he brings up the yellow light of death again and again and again and again in sad desperate attempt to put down the PS3 in a bid to make his purchase of an X-Box justifiable ... the Yellow Light of Death exists on the first generation of PS3's. If it exists on other generations then there is no reports of it on the net that I remember, unless you listen to the rabid rantings of X-box fanboys.

        Yes, I own a PS3. I regard it as a better console.

        1. This post has been deleted by a moderator

          1. Anonymous Coward
            FAIL

            re: RRODTards

            Only in Microsoft's head or in shareholders dreams does it not exist.

            I know plenty of Xbox owners that have bought consoles in the latest year, only for them to not make it out of the 1yr warranty (Xbox warranty was silently dropped back to 1yr some time back).

            Clearly Microsoft talked the problems down, and then dropped the warranty back to suit. The point is that does not mean the problem is fixed.

            Just like the new Slim consoles that STILL destroy discs..

            www.destructoid.com/e3-10-do-not-do-this-with-your-new-xbox-360- 176508.phtml

            Microsoft have been rather crafty with the Slim, they have taken the RROD indicator away, it no longer come up with that error, however it's not a fix, it's just adding a different error, so when you Google it does not turn up so many results (at least not until it's got a new name).

            I also find it rather funny that you we willing to not buy a PS3 because some random person on the internet thinks your current console is crap (which is clearly is at least from a manufacturing point of view, and personally I think it is from a gamers point of view too)

            1. Anonymous Coward
              Pirate

              fanbois are great.

              I have 2 Elites and a PS3, none have failed. (touch wood)

              The problem I have with the PS3 is Cinavia... If I knew there would be an update in the future sticking this DRM on, I wouldn't have bought one.

        2. M Gale

          What?

          "Instead he thinks it is because of his son, who has the habit of turning the console off by just unplugging it from the wall. That is it! One fail, and not from the Yellow Light of Death."

          If pulling the plug will break the toy, then that toy also has a critical design flaw.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      FAIL

      Here we go again...

      Slim RROD still exists:

      http://www.geekosystem.com/xbox-360-slim-overheats-red-dot/

      Slim still scratches disks:

      http://www.destructoid.com/e3-10-do-not-do-this-with-your-new-xbox-360-176508.phtml

      I suppose Microsoft are eager to sell people new systems as soon as the old ones expire prematurely. I also note the next systems only have 1yr warranty now too, which is convenient.

      1. big col
        Boffin

        warranty

        since 2002 all consumer goods sold in the EU have a 2 year warranty by law. Unfortunately for us the people who are paid silly money to enforce consumer law don't give a dam.

        Under the sale of goods act it is up to the consumer to prove there is an inherent fault after the first 6 months, and this can often be difficult to do.

        However Under EU law the 2 year warranty is mandatory

        http://www.wak-tt.com/tt/2yearwarranty1.htm

        (quote)

        Directive 1999/44/EC, May 1999 from the European Parliament stipulates that by 1st January 2002 all member states must have altered their legislation to comply with new consumer laws. These new laws will ensure that all new consumer goods, including cars, carry at least a two-year warranty and used consumer goods have a minimum of a one-year warranty.

        So stuff Microsoft or any other manufacturer who says its out of warranty when it breaks 1 year and a day after purchase, and point them to the above directive.

      2. Brian 59
        Troll

        Here we go again... → # ↑

        Yeh you can scratch a disc, very easily. I've roughly 70 games. I scratched one, know how you do it, you move the xbox while its reading the disc, oooo, what a design flaw. Tube. Must be lovely place you live were gaystations don't break, Sony and Apple are god (I'll put money on it you've either had or had a judas phone). Within one week two mates PS3's have gone. I've got a PS2, Wii and Xbox, didn't see point of PS3 apart from using as a BR player.

  2. Steven Hunter
    Boffin

    Possible source...

    Some Danish guy predicted the iPhone 4 antenna's problems back in early June.

    http://www.comon.dk/nyheder/Er-iPhone-4-foedt-med-antenne-problemer-1.362104.html

    Translation Link:

    http://translate.google.dk/translate?u=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.comon.dk%2Fnyheder%2FEr-iPhone-4-foedt-med-antenne-problemer-1.362104.html&sl=da&tl=en

  3. rcdicky
    Go

    Wierd thing is though...

    people are still buying them.

    It can't be the so-called (though not by me) fanboys that are buying them. Surely they'd already have one?

    So as much as Apple have mucked it up a bit, you've got to hand it to them, they know how to sell stuff :P

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Not everyone reads tech pages...

      The people still buying probably don't read the tech pages, so why would they know about the problem?

      The salesman in Carphone-4-U isn't going to tell them either.

      1. Geoff Campbell
        FAIL

        It's not just the tech pages.

        The story got a good airing on the BBC TV news this morning. That's gotta hurt....

        GJC

    2. Gordon is not a Moron

      Not that I'm a cynic, but..

      it's a little hard to get money from the payout to the class action that's being filed if you don't have an iPhone. Just buy a phone, before St Steve admits they made a balls up, sit back and wait for the cheque to arrive.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Nothing wierd...

      It still looks great. why wouldn't you buy one?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        WTF?

        What?

        Because I'd rather have a less good looking phone that I can call people on.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          @What?

          did you miss the sarcasm?

          (the usual form over function argument)

      2. adnim Silver badge
        Joke

        form over function

        My girlfriend looks like a model, her skin is smooth as silk her figure is perfect, men drool over her when she walks into the room. My ego swells when I notice how she affects those around her. Her aura exudes sensuality.

        Her IQ barely reaches double figures. she sits on her ass all day applying makeup and brushing her hair, she costs me a fortune in jewelery and cosmetics. I can only hold a conversation with her if I use words of two syllables or less. She never smiles or laughs, never shows me affection and I think her pussy has healed up.

        1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

          Re: form over function

          Pure class. Hey, what are you doing later?

          1. adnim Silver badge
            Heart

            Hi Sarah

            Anything you like sweetie :-)

    4. John Bailey

      Big question is..

      How many return them after using them for a bit.

  4. marschw

    Idea:

    Somebody should make an app that uses sudden signal degradation as a "button press". That is, you now have an extra button on the side of the phone. Let's make lemonade out of this, people!

    1. M Gale

      App idea

      The server provides a web interface that shows a list of high scores. The client monitors for sudden signal degradation and counts this as one point. The high score list can be sorted by user, phone/device model, OS revision.. oh, all sorts of interesting variables.

      Anyone got a Mac to play with?

  5. Scott Mckenzie

    People are still buying them...

    ....because in my experience only 1 of my 11 friends with an iPhone has any issues and they're nowhere near as severe as some folks seem to make out. So, it could be just the whole issue is being blown massively out of proportion?

  6. dz-015
    Dead Vulture

    Get your facts right!

    'Then, days later, it said that problem was caused by software that incorrectly calculated the number of "signal bars".'

    No they didn't! Why do people keep incorrectly reporting this?! Apple clearly stated that this was just a software update to allow the bars to more accurately represent the amount of signal available. They never said it would have any affect on the underlying attenuation issue caused by touching the phone in certain ways.

  7. Giles Jones Gold badge

    Hmm

    I dunno why they didn't put the gap on the bottom of the phone, would have been no issues then

    1. Si 1

      Gap on the bottom

      Oddly enough it does look as if that is what they've tried to do when you look at the phone. There's a small black separator on both sides of the phone near the bottom. From looks alone this implies the two antennas are actually properly isolated from each other, but in practice that doesn't seem to be the case.

      This could either mean the black separator on the right is purely cosmetic to balance the gap on the left or there could be some sort of manufacturing flaw that has rendered this separation inoperative. Hopefully we'll find out tomorrow what's really going on...

      1. dylan 4
        FAIL

        the problem is your hand, not the phone...

        The gap isn't cosmetic, and there (likely) isn't a manufacturing flaw. The issue is that the user's hand can bridge the gap, whether or not the antennae are isolated on the phone (i.e. your hand shorts the circuit).

        It's an embarrassing design flaw, and a stupid decision to put it into production when the problem was foreseen earlier, but not the end of the world. If it weren't Apple (or MS), the issue would make the tech pages, but not come close to the front page.

        You _can_ hold your phone different(ly) or use a case of some sort , and resolve the major part of the issue (bridging of the circuit), and Apple are right to say that signal attenuation with any phone will always depend on where your hand is in relation to the antenna.

        The simplest fix for iPhone 4.01 will be an electrically insulating coating over those metal parts, and no doubt the production line is already gearing up for this.

        Fingers crossed there will be a voluntary trade-in scheme for people experiencing issues, and subsequent availability of discounted refurb 4.0 models with the problem (for fanbois like me who would like one, but can't fathom spending that sort of $$ on any phone). For half price I don't have a problem holding my phone diffferently, it could hardly suck worse than my LG.

    2. Cade Metz (Written by Reg staff)

      respectfully

      Please read this letter from Apple:

      http://www.apple.com/pr/library/2010/07/02appleletter.html

      Cade Metz

      The Reg

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Yes, indeed.

        "If you are not entirely satisfied, you can help us brush this under the carpet. Thank you for being a mug!"

      2. Geoff Campbell
        FAIL

        That letter

        I do believe Apple are going to end up regretting that letter. It seems to me to be the key part of the whole affair - unforeseen design problems are no biggie, everyone has them, even Apple. Arrogant hand-waving responses claiming that black is white and all your customers are deluded is, well, ill-judged.

        We shall see....

        GJC

      3. dz-015

        Well OK, but...

        I don't see anything in that letter stating that this software update will make any difference to the attenuation issue they'd already acknowledged, in which the signal can be attenuated by holding the phone in a certain place when not using a case. The letter simply states that the bar algorithm is going to be changed to give a more realistic idea of signal level available, which hopefully will be helpful for users.

        Whether or not the attenuation issue is a serious problem is a different matter. Clearly at the time they wrote this, Apple thought not. I've also read many, many forum posts from iPhone 4 users who don't consider this to be a serious problem either. But perhaps Apple have changed their minds a bit on this - hopefully the press conference later will reveal if this is the case.

        1. Eddy Ito Silver badge
          Paris Hilton

          Re: Well OK, but...

          The reason you don't see anything in the letter is simple, it gets dismissed as par for the course. The claim is that the signal of every phone changes depending on how you grip it, specifically the attenuation of "its reception by 1 or more bars." They then go on to blame the formula in the software that displays the signal strength.

          To sum up; your grip on the phone changes the signal on every phone, the software on the iPhone doesn't indicate that change in signal properly, we've updated the software to fix that and now it will report signal strength like every other phone. See how that works?

    3. Stevie Silver badge

      Bah!

      Why do people keep using "affect" incorrectly? Is it some dread iMeme spread by insidious through-the-body circuiting when using the iPhone 4?

    4. strangefish

      um

      sorry but even if you and your chums were a representative sample...one in eleven is actually a lot of people

      1. Charles Manning

        10 out of 11 is way more.

        So 10 out of 11 people have no problems and love the sexy new design.

        1 out of 11 people has problems. Of those with the problem, most will likely adapt to using the Jobsian Grip or put on the bumper thing and few will actually return the device for a refund.

        Sure these problems are foreseeable, but that does not make it the wrong choice. A dropped call is not the end of the universe, particularly when there are workarounds.

        It is also foreseeable that people will crash cars and kill themselves with chainsaws (resulting in far worse outcomes than a dropped call). Yet people manage to learn to use these technologies in a reasonably safe way.

        1. Chris 244
          FAIL

          Charles, it's an "iPHONE"

          If I was to shell out for something called an "iPhone" I would think it reasonable to expect that the product would above all else excel at placing and receiving PHONE CALLS. If I paid a large sum of money for said "iPhone" and the box actually contained a cheaper product that did everything BUT make phone calls ("iPod Touch" anyone) I would be unhappy.

          Lets run the numbers. 1.7 million+ iPhone 4s sold (Apples number), only one out of eleven suffering reception issues (your number) equals: one very large class-action lawsuit.

        2. Far Canals
          FAIL

          Got a motor then Charlie?

          If one person in 11 had a car with defective brakes then it wouldn't be so good to say that 10 out of 11 cars won't ram you up the arse if you stop sudden like.

          Things aren't perfect, but manufacturers of products with known defects should stand by their products and put it right. Free 'bumpers' for anyone with an issue would sort it I'd think, but that's not a strategy that Apple want to embrace. That would be admitting failure...

    5. Rogerborg

      Consider the source

      "only 1 of my 11 friends with an iPhone has any issues"

      Translation: 10 out of 11 chatterati sheep sit in Soho and Kensington Starbucks braying into each other's uncomprehending entitled iFaces using WiFi, without noticing any problems.

      Here's a hint: send your Trustafarian brain trust on an expedition outside of the M25 and tell us how the signal holds up. They'll need guides and bearers, mind, and make sure they take their own Evian - you can't trust Provincial bottled water.

      1. Brutus
        FAIL

        Rogerborg, do you know Charles personally?

        If not, why the ad hominem attack?

        Whilst I don't agree with Charles' interpretation of the numbers nor with his car anology, I see no reason to launch an attack on him or his friends. What evidence do you have that he's even in the UK, let alone within the M25? And how on earth do you manage to divine his trustafarian status from his post?

      2. Frank Bough
        WTF?

        Horse Shit

        My iPhone succeeded an SE (K770) which succeeded a Nokia (8910). It is better at the basic business of making an d receiving phone calls than either.

        You might have a massive chip on your shoulder, but it has precisely zero relevance to the functionality and usability of Apple mobile telephones.

    6. Andy ORourke
      Happy

      Too true

      it seems that a substantial amount of user do appear to have problems, however the news stories seem to imply that EVERY iPhone 4 is affected, out of my 4 colleagues, 3 family members I know only 1 phone has the issue and the user of this phone can hold two of the other phones in exaclty the same way without inducing the fault whereas the other two people can hold his phone and get the signal to drop out.

      It is not every single iPhone, sure there are a lot of issues (with sales in the millions) it would be unusual to not have some issues with some phones but to my mind it appears to have been blown out of all proportion

    7. Randy Hudson

      Typo? You meant 11 out of 11, surely

      (or 1 out of 1?) Apparently you don't know how to reproduce the problem. I've reproduced the problem on every display iPhone I've picked up in both Apple stores in my area, and on 100% of friends' iPhones. Maybe you spend too much time with your friends and you've all developed calluses on your hands??

  8. Kajiki
    Thumb Up

    Judas phone

    Genius.

  9. PaulK
    Troll

    Is there a sad-iPhone or a bomb?

    Just curious. I haven't been near anything Apple since I had a Mac Plus.

    1. Geoff Campbell
      Thumb Up

      Bomb Error

      Oh, now there's an idea - can we have a "bomb error" icon, please? That'd be just perfect for Apple posts.

      http://www.computerhope.com/jargon/b/bomb.htm

      GJC

    2. Frank Bough
      Thumb Up

      Well, that makes you...

      ...at least as well qualified to hold forth on the subject as most of the Apple refusniks on this forum, so why not give it a go?

    3. Eddy Ito Silver badge
      Terminator

      Oh no, don't say bomb!

      Shit, here's the TSA now!

  10. bigjok
    Thumb Down

    iphone

    ive been using the new iphone4 for a while now and i cant for the love of me replicate the issue that has widely been reported

    maybe im one the lucky few

    1. Stevie Silver badge

      Bah!

      Unfortunately your awsome iPhone powers have drained your ability to sentence capitalize correctly and have corrupted your idiom banks.

      Totally worth it IMO.

      1. Witty username
        FAIL

        All the best comebacks are spelling/grammar related

        Hit 'em where it hurts!

        1. Gordon is not a Moron
          Joke

          Dear Witty

          That should be "spelling\grammar"

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            you people really are

            a bunch of fuckwits.

            If all you have you to throw back is a dig at spelling or grammar (which more than likely are typos), just go an drop dead, worthless, useless tosh.

            Average respondants age = 2

            1. Eddy Ito Silver badge

              @Obviously!

              I see what you did there.

    2. Nick Ryan Silver badge
      Stop

      It's very easy

      Step by step

      1) Present iPhone so you can see the signal strength bars

      2) Hold it in your left hand, with the bottom left corner resting in the palm of your hand (or, more naturally, the lower part of your palm - i.e. so it's comfortable.

      3) Unless you have odd (or just non-conductive / very dry) skin, your skin will electically bridge the two metal bands that, in the lower left of the iPhone, are separated by a small bit of black plastic.

      4) Watch the signal strength bars plummet into nothingness.

      It doesn't matter how the signal strength bars are displayed on screen - the antennas no longer work very well.

  11. Big Knox

    update now available

    the update (4.0.1) that addresses the signal bar issue is now available so will be interesting to see what it does.

    1. Stevie Silver badge

      Bah!

      This upgrade appears to be a pair of huge foam-padded Mickey Mouse Hand gloves.

    2. Dan 55 Silver badge
      Jobs Horns

      Does it come with a new EULA...

      ... that absolves Apple of any responsibility for any poor performance on the hardware it's installed on?

      Problem solved!

  12. Wrenchy
    Linux

    Oh the smugness

    I hope Stevie-Boy's arrogance took kick in the teeth over this.

    The quest for some "Brilliant engineering" took priority over an expert's recommendation.

    In Steve Jobs' own words... "If you have to put your phone in a case to make calls, YOU BLEW IT."

    1. Stevie Silver badge

      Bah!

      Prediction: New "cool iCase" culture in 5...4...3...

  13. Stevie Silver badge

    Bah!

    Form over Function: The Post Wozniak Apple credo.

  14. M. Burns Silver badge
    Boffin

    Condoms

    The fix is not for Apple to give its customers bumpers. People should start calling the bumpers "Condoms", as they protect you when Apple screws you.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Boffin

    Why are people confused about why it affects users differently?

    Plenty of people are going to be in using the phone in area's where even when bridging the antenna's the signal is more than adequate, so they won't have any problem.

    For someone else in an area with poor reception, how they hold the phone will make a world of difference.

    Apple should have made this a non story weeks ago and simply released a free version of their bumper case that's just thick enough to prevent the reception problem.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Coffee/keyboard

    @Stevie, Thanks M. Burns

    Prediction: New "cool iCase" culture in 5...4...3... Wait!!!!!! Hold the Presses .... New "cool iCondom" culture ... resume countdown .... 2...1...

  17. JaitcH
    Jobs Horns

    Gods only speak and followers are supposed to listen

    The <snip> Apple's senior antenna expert told ... </snip> explains everything, subjects simply do NOT talk to Gods; and even the Gods listen to Californian Job.

    Hope the guy sent CJ a memo to protect his nether end with paper.

  18. Urh
    Flame

    Honestly...

    I thought Jobs learned 30 years ago with the Apple III that he should never, ever, EVER get involved in the hardware design process in any way whatsoever. Unfortunately, I can't see this cock-up doing too much harm to Apple's sales.

  19. tjdennis
    Thumb Up

    Just give the bumper a new nickname

    Call it the Steve Jobs Rubber. Apple will find another solution ASAP.

  20. ph0b0s

    Will we see Job's at today's press conference?

    Doubt it....

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Go

    Conformal coating?

    Anyone else out there heard of "conformal coating"? If not, think "clear nail varnish". It's transparent, insulating, and not too thick (unlike iPhone users).

    Is there an aftermarket business opportunity here?

  22. Bear Features
    WTF?

    hmmmm

    Well how strange, and there was me thinking it was a software issue? Where the heck did I get that idea from? Must've dreamt it.

  23. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    curious

    Being a leftie I may be considered a freak by the "norms" but I personally hold my iphone in my right hand and key input with my left!

    So my question is how many lefties hold their phone in their left hand and how many righties hold it in their left?

    1. Frank Bough

      Possibly

      ...but I presume that stainless steel was chosen as much for its tactile and aesthetic properties as it was for its electrical performance. When you hold an iPhone 4 you touch nothing but glass and stainless steel, and this is a big part of the products showroom appeal. Shame that Apple haven't managed to properly integrate engineering and design this time around.

      Incidentally, what makes you think iPhone users are "thick"? They clearly earn significantly more than average. Do you not?

      1. JamesR87
        Alert

        iPhone =/= Earnings

        The idea that just because someone has an iPhone means they have lucrative jobs is very much fallacious. A variety of people I know right across the spectrum of earnings own iPhones and they universally have the same "Oh, Trendy Gadget" reasoning behind it.

        The higher earners I know actually trend towards either simple phones (Nokia 6303 Style) or Android/HTC devices.

        You don't have to earn a lot to afford an iPhone, you just have to have crappy priorities.

        1. mmiied

          re:iPhone =/= Earnings

          simpley put the reasion the wealthy are wealthy is they tend spend mony more wisely

          1. Bod
            Paris Hilton

            hardly

            "simpley put the reasion the wealthy are wealthy is they tend spend mony more wisely"

            You think Paris is a wise money spender?

            Having seen the kind of money spent on luxury gadgets in the business I'm in, by the rich and famous, I fail to see how any of that is wise spending.

            They just have more money to throw down the drain and someone keeps paying them the money. Probably the most intelligence comes from their agents who secure their income.

            That's not counting everyone though. Entrepreneurs, city bankers and the like are wise spenders, or more accurately, wise investors.

            1. mmiied

              re:hardley

              she is not but I bet her dad was/is a very srude person with mony and she is throwing most of his down the drain

    2. Mark Greenwood
      Badgers

      I'm a rightie...

      ..and I always hold the phone in my left hand. The reason being that I need my right hand to operate the buttons on the phone. Dialling with my left hand just doesn't work for me. So once the phone's in my left hand, that's where it stays.

      I'm actually surprised to discover that right-handed people would hold the phone in their right hand. I was looking for an analogy, and I failed to find one but I did think of public phone boxes (remember them?) which seem to be designed so that it's more obvious to hold the receiver in your left hand and dial with the right. So holding the phone in your left hand would appear, historically speaking, to be the norm. I think Jobs has a problem with normality.

  24. Charles Smith
    Pint

    ..and the iPhone 4 has a new feature

    We added this special feature to allow spouses/partners to claim that the signal is fading and they will call their partner back soon. This improvement helps to prevent iPhone addiction, particularly when you at the pub after work.

  25. Jamie Kitson

    "Judas Phone"

    Excellent.

  26. Steve Adams
    Jobs Halo

    You need FAITH to be a fanboi

    Hi,

    This whole issue is clearly a TEST by hisjobsness to allow those with true FAITH to express it.

    Let those without the trust and FAITH required fall away and the TRUE BELIEVERS stand up and proclaim.

    So - he may lose some followers over this - but the those who remain will believe even more.. and be bonded to the cult even more strongly.

    Then... with whatever comes next (iPhone 4.1)... or a miracle solution to this problem... HE can make the world right again - ease pain and suffering and bring blessed relief.

    HE moves in mysterious ways - don't try to understand or explain. KEEP THE FAITH!

    Note: Having never been a believer I have sympathy for those still caught in the cult.

  27. Noogie Brown
    Joke

    You know why there call it the Xbox 360?

    Because when you see it you'll turn 360 degrees and walk away.

    1. JamesR87

      Incorrect...

      You appear to have incorrectly applied the Joke Alert icon to your post ;)

    2. Rob - Denmark
      FAIL

      Turning away - you're doing it wrong!

      If you turn 360 degrees, you end up facing the same way you started!

    3. Anonymous Coward
      FAIL

      @ Noogie Brown

      You just got an 'F' in geometry.

    4. Matthew 25
      FAIL

      360?

      So, you walk away backwards? I'd rather do a 180 it makes you look less odd.

  28. Matt Hawkins
    Megaphone

    Apple are having a laugh

    How does miscalculating the number of bars result in dropped calls and complete drop in connection to your mobile phone provider? If you had a connection before touching the phone and then you don't that has got bugger all to do with displaying bars on the screen. Especially when everyone else in the room has got a 5 bar signal. On the same network.

    Apple are having a laugh.

    What is even funnier is all the people that think the "bars" explanation is actually an explanation.

    Some of these mugs are paying £30+ per month for a phone that can't make calls properly. Think it only affects left handed people? Stand back in my office and laugh at the iPhone4 users as they struggle to use their phone and use a computer mouse at the same time. Its like handing the local idiot a piece of paper with "please turn over" written on both sides.

    As soon as they forget to use the special official Apple phone grip - bang - dropped call.

    ... but then Apple were so obsessed with hiding the design of the new iPhone that they forgot to actually test it the way their users would actually test it.

    iStyle over iFunction

  29. James Micallef Silver badge
    FAIL

    How do you know a PR drone is lying???

    same way you know a politician is!

    So according to Apple, all phones suffer a loss in signal when picked up??? That's an unbelievable whopper. I've had numerous phones from Nokia, Sony, Samsung, Motorola and Sagem, none of them had this issue. In 10 years of common mobile phone usage this has apparently never been enough of an issue for any phone from any company to make headlines.

  30. Octoberon
    Jobs Horns

    On a scale of 1 to 10...

    ...how satisfying would it be to legitimately send His Steveness an email saying simply, "I told you so."

    That would be worth getting fired for. Probably.

  31. Eddie Johnson
    Thumb Up

    Kudos

    Love the Jesus Phone => Judas Phone morph. Its also the iCantPhone.

    Form over Function, it's what Apple has always done so well.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    makes no sense!

    If lefties are the ones being targetted as having a problem with holding the phone! Then why is the antenna gap on the left side of the phone, which is bridged when held in the left hand!

    Surely its the righties that have the problem then? My palm goes no where near the left side of my phone unless i turn it screen side into palm.... pointless unless I wish to gaze at the apple logo (which I don't).

    I also tend to hold my phone by my finger tips when on a call rather than in my palm, so phone quality would be no issue! I do however rest my phone in my palm when faffing about.

    I would just like definative clarity if its left handed or right handed people who have issues? Maybe also if these people tend to eat with sporks rather than delicately holding their cutlery. Last time I had to hold a mobile phone with my entire fist was about 15 years ago with my gargantuan Motorola.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Press Conference & iSpin

    Well I suppose the two likely outcomes, this being Apple, that they're really going into denial and hope to tell the press so loudly that there is no problem that they'll believe them.

    Or, they'll state categorically that there is absolutely no problem with the Iphone and nothing needs to be fixed or changed... however, because they're such a wonderful loving company, they've decided to take a massive financial hit for absolutely no reason and replace all shipped units purely to allay the unfounded fears of their valued customers. See what nice guys they are?

    Of course... despite the replacement units being absolutely no better than the perfectly fine units they're replacing already were, they'll have much less of a problem with the antenna.

    Note that I said 'much less' and not 'none'. If Apple do change the production process, it'll be a quick fix such as coating the antenna with magic paint rather than repositioning or redesigning it.

    I wouldn't even put it past them to employ a Chinese Suicide Factory™ to whip peasants into standing next to a tin of magic paint and, using a cheap brush, paint the antenna of returned units for sale as 'nearly used' at a 30% discount.

    Oh, and if there is a recall, be wary of any future Apple sales figures. Will their official figures include the combined count of returned and replacement units, effectively doubling the number?

  34. Keir Snelling

    Already letting the fanbois down.

    My friend applied the software fix today - His experiment seems to dispute Apple's claim that the signal drop is only a problem in low signal areas.

    iPhone 4.0.1 signal indicator fix fails to do what Apple claimed - From 5 to 1 in just a grip of the hand... http://bit.ly/9Clh5Y

  35. TkH11

    @adnim, sarahbee

    Go for it mate, you're in there with the moderator.

    I have no idea what she's like, but from postings in other discussion groups, I get the feeling she's a strong dominant woman.... wonder if she likes leather? :)

    ouch!

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Here is news

    from the bbc:

    "To get their free case, owners will be able to apply via the Apple website from 22 July. Mr Jobs said Apple could not make enough for all owners of the phone but would source a supply and offer a range of cases.

    Based on retail prices of iPhone cases, supplying one to all three million customers could cost Apple about $180m (£118m).

    Mr Jobs also extended an offer to iPhone4 users to give them a full refund if they were still unhappy with the handset's performance. This offer will be available until 30 September"

    1. TkH11

      @AC 'Here is the news'

      You're mixing up the manufacturing cost with retail price. They're very different things.

      The retail price of all those cases may be £118 million but that is not the amount of money Apple will lose. That retail price includes profit (obviously!)

      The amount of money Apple will lose will be the manfacturing cost (or cost to them of buying the cases from a manufacturer if they don't manufacture them theirselves). This will be considerably less than the £118 million you quote.

      At least by providing a case apply only lose a fairly small amount in percentage terms of the profit from each individual IPhone. Probably pennies in monetry terms.

      But recalling the product and issuing a new modified, re-engineered IPhone which fixes the flaw properly is going to wipe out their entire profit for each IPhone - unless they can keep the main circuit board inside and the engineering mod is just to the case and external antenna.

  37. TkH11

    @Urh

    I have a question mark over Jobs' technical ability, he dropped out of Reed college in 1972, but it's hard to find out what he was studying, though he has said there was a module in "Calligraphy", so it's definitely not a technical course then!

    You refer back to the Apple III. It's well known that the Apple 2 was designed by Steve Wozniak, who had the electronics skills, Jobs had the business and marketing skills.

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