A settlement has been reached in a class-action lawsuit targeting the iPhone 4′s antenna and reception problems, reports CNET. U.S. residents who bought the handset will be offered either $15 or a free bumper case, however the offer is only valid for those individuals who did not take advantage of Apple’s previous offer. The settlement comes from 18 separate lawsuits that were consolidated into one, all claiming that Apple was “misrepresenting and concealing material information in the marketing, advertising, sale, and servicing of its iPhone 4–particularly as it relates to the quality of the mobile phone antenna and reception and related software.” Original buyers will be notified via email before April 30th, or they can visit http://www.iPhone4Settlement.com, although the site is not yet live. After the notifications are sent, the claims period will last for 120 days. More →
Apple was undoubtedly losing sleep over the fact that Consumer Reports refused to “recommend” its iPhone 4 due to the attenuation issues affectionately referred to as Antennagate — Consumer Reports continuously praised the iPhone 4 despite saying it couldn’t recommend the phone — but now the Cupertino-based company can finally sleep easy. Consumer Reports on Tuesday proclaimed that the redesigned antenna system on Apple’s iPhone 4S is no longer affected by the dreaded death grip. “In special reception tests of the iPhone 4S that duplicated those we did on the iPhone 4, the newer phone did not display the same reception flaw, which involves a loss of signal strength when you touch a spot on the phone’s lower left side while you’re in an area with a weak signal,” the independent consumer shopping guide stated on its blog. While the new antenna allowed the iPhone 4S to score higher than its predecessor in Consumer Reports’ ratings, the improvements still weren’t enough to top Samsung’s Galaxy S II, the LG Thrill or the Motorola DROID BIONIC. More →
The hubbub hardly registered a blip on most people’s radar screens, but HTC recently found itself fielding some “death grip” claims related to its HD7 smartphone. The term death grip, in this context, was made famous earlier this year when customers found that a certain grip on Apple’s iPhone 4 would cause the handset to lose signal and drop calls. Apple uncharacteristically addressed the issue with a press conference, claiming most phones suffer similar issues when gripped near the antenna. Now, HTC’s HD7 is the latest smartphone to allegedly be affected by certain grips. In response to these claims, HTC made the following statement:
Quality in industrial design is of key importance to HTC. To ensure the best possible signal strength, antennas are placed in the area least likely to be covered by a person’s face or hands while the phone is in use. However, it is inevitable that a phone’s signal strength will weaken a little when covered in its entirety by a user’s palm or fingers. We test all of our phones extensively and are confident that under normal circumstances reception strength and performance will be more than sufficient for the operation of the phone when network coverage is also adequate.
With Apple publicly stating specific handsets are susceptible to the same kind of antenna attenuation as the iPhone 4, and RIM and Nokia chiming in, we wanted to know what you guys are finding. Can you reproduce the same effect on your handset? Here is a handset that Apple didn’t specifically call out, the Verizon BlackBerry Bold 9650, and you can see it takes a nice hit when we hold it pretty firm in our hands. I’m pretty sure this has always happened, but I’m not sure I noticed until now. Plus it’s on Verizon. *Gasp*
The antenna issues plaguing the iPhone 4 have infuriated many iPhone users (and rightfully so), but have you ever wondered how Apple is training its employees to deal with the fiasco? Well thanks to one of our Apple connects, we now know the exact procedures AppleCare reps must follow when dealing with any reception complaints regarding the iPhone 4. Hit the jump to check them out. More →