Consumer Reports Reverses Course, Doesn't Recommend iPhone 4

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lifebringer

The Anandtech review (page 2, on the antenna, at http://www.anandtech.com/show/3794/the-iphone-4-review/2 ) tells you EVERYTHING you need to know about this issue, including both the signal strength drop as well as the other part of the problem (which Apple incorrectly blames the entire thing on), how numerical signal strength is converted into the "bars" most of us know.

 

Anandtech>Consumer Reports. 

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timmyw

While Anandtech did a good job (as they usually do), driving around Tucson and looking at dbm (as reported by the iPhony) is not the same as conducting the test in a Faraday cage using test equipment specficially designed for testing cell phones. Even the author admits "It's difficult to be exact about the data, since signal is very sensitive to direction, ambient conditions, and cell breathing." Anandtech's report is nicely documented and detailed but it still is a field trial and not a lab test under controlled conditions.

While Anandtech has a good reputation in the geek community, it will be a lot harder for Steve Job to tell a venerable independent group like Consumer Reports using controlled conditions that the reason for the problem is that they are "doing it wrong."

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lifebringer

True, true, good point. I'm wrong about Anandtech being > Consumer Reports; each has their place.

 However, one thing Anandtech does great is explain the issue with much better depth. I'm not a subscriber to CR, but he goes into his product reviews with far more detail than I've ever seen in a CR article. They might test with great lab conditions, but they water down their results into a page or two short summary, unless I'm wrong here. I'd love if they published more detailed versions of their reports for those readers who wished to go more in depth into a particular product review. I'd subscribe instantly. 

 

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timmyw

This is why I love Consumer Reports. They test it under controlled circumstances which a lot of places and people didn't. They didn't rely on how many bars (so, CRApple can't say oops faulty calculation. Besides, if Apple can't figure out there signal strength indicator has been wrong all along can you really trust them to tell you that the signal strength is correct).

Under controlled laboratory conditions, they found it didn't work. Sure you could put some tape across it or you could open your wallet (again) and buy a case, but that doesn't mean you should. I wonder how many of these Apple lovers would think it would be right for Toyota to tell all its owners they needed to buy new floor mats or duct tape the mats to the floor to solve stuck accelerator problems.

I for one don't think that is how companies should treat customers and I can't understand how anyone who was sold a defective product can defend the very company that ripped them off either by design or lack of QA.

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Bender2000

It doesn't matter whether you hold the thing right or wrong or if it even degrades the signal, you can't buy one right now! Same with all the hot Android phones. With five comparable devices on distinct networks, why can't I find a frakken phone! 

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etsugua

I was going to make the same point about the Wii remote! 

 I totally agree -- Apple should take a lesson from Nintendo and send every iPhone 4 owner a free case.  Get your head out of your butt, Steve, and do right by your fanatics!

 Edit: Sorry -- this was suppose to be a reply to Caboose's comment below :-o

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Shadai

You're reviewing it wrong.

Steve

Sent from my iPhone

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devin3627

buy an apple outer casing and problem solved.

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aca20031

Wait wait I thought they were claiming this was all just some freak algorithm bug that improperly calculated bars, lol.

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dougau

I recall Apple went through this with easily scratched iPods when they came out with the 5th gen. models, If that cheap bastard Jobs would just include a case this entire issue probably wouldn't have received all of the negative press that it did.
Apple truly believes their customers are the dumbest people to ever walk the face of the earth and thier customers haven’t let them down so far.

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aldude505

I will be the first to admit that I do not approve of Apple, I do not approve of the way they market their laptop and desktops to the non-tech savy college student (if you don't believe me come to any college campus on move in week and go to the bookstore) but even a PC lover has to admit... They are damn good at it.

Now this 'situation' isn't really a HUGE deal, it doesn't affect 95% of the population of iPhone users. But it is again the way that Apple treats its customers, not that the PC market is any better but we have come to expect that, but Apple users are above that low life non-sense. With a simple case the problem goes away, or better yet a piece of tape. Now if Apple is going to tout how beautiful the Apple iPhone 4 is, then shouldn't it be usable in its native state?

The new iPhone is a major improvement on the current gen, anyone can see that. It just seems that if you are going to spend that much money on R&D and make your new phone 'the best there is', maybe you should make sure it can make a call first... Or even better still maybe find a better carrier haha

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I Jedi

Eventually the problem will be resolved technically; however, I wonder if Apple ever plans to help the people affected by the iPhone 4 blunder by offering them a phone exchange or something to that affect.

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aviaggio

Nah, they'll just release a new and improved iPhone 4S (the S is for SIGNAL!) and expect everyone to buy a new one.

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Biceps

The sad thing is that they WILL buy a new one :(

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austin43

I have an iPhone 4 and this is really a non-issue for me, even before I had a case.  Now that I have a case it doesn't affect the signal at all if you hold your finger on the lower left of the phone.  People are way too picky considering how easy of a fix there is for this.  

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big_montana

Really? So you did not mind spending an additioanl $35 for something that should have been totally unneccessary. Say what you will about RIM, but at least they include cases with all of their smartphones.

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tugboat_2

 Let's see now. You pay how much for this phone. And to make it work reliably you have to either jury rig it with tape, paint, or whatever or; you have to spend another $40 for a case to make it work right.

You mean it really doesn't "just work" right out of the box? And you are being presumptuous thinking that kind of money deserves a FULLY functioning product without addons or jury rigs.

I guess if you bought a new Cadillac and the wipers came on when you tried to roll down the electric windows you would just blame your self for thinking you needed to roll down the windows.  

 

If you can't dazzel em with Brilliance, baffle em with bull puckey. (From the tome; Murphy's Law, Annex 5, Smooth Recoveries)

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sojrner

I wonder how many "apple loyal" simply went out and spent $20 (or
whatever) on the case to fix the "non-issue"... makes one wonder if that
was not the plan by the Pentaverate the whole time.

...things
that make you go hmm...

IMO forcing users to buy another accessory to fix a problem in the product they are buying is NOT acceptable. Whitness Nintendo and the Wii when they issued all owners silicone cases and straps for the wiimotes and then packaged them with all new purchases... They saw the issue and fixed it w/ minimal fanfare and no worries from anyone. They've gone on to make boatloads b/c they owned up to the mistake and fixed it before anyone got up in arms too much about it.

Apple would rather you just say "thank you sir, may I have another?" IMO all the complaints are justified, not for how bad the problem is... but that there is a problem at all that Apple is not fixing and keeping their loyal customers loyal.

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Caboose

 Nintendo really did an awesome job with that. From the free wrist strap replacements, to the free "wii condoms", they did show how a company is supposed to deal with an issue.

Nintendo also did release a statement, which said that the Wiimote wasn't intended to be whipped like people were doing, and that it's designed to detect even the slightest of movements, but that didn't stop them from releasing free resolutions to all!

 

-= I don't want to be dead, I want to be alive! Or... a cowboy! =-

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BuLLg0d

Excellent point!  gg Nintendo.

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aviaggio

Oh Jesusphone, how far we've fallen...

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