Updated: RIM responds to Apple over antennagate

BlackBerry Bold 9700 death grip

Co-CEOs Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie have released an official response from RIM to Apple's iPhone 4 press conference yesterday and Steve Jobs' demonstration of a BlackBerry Bold 9700 suffering from similar signal-drop when death-gripped:

"Apple's attempt to draw RIM into Apple's self-made debacle is unacceptable. Apple's claims about RIM products appear to be deliberate attempts to distort the public's understanding of an antenna design issue and to deflect attention from Apple's difficult situation. RIM is a global leader in antenna design and has been successfully designing industry-leading wireless data products with efficient and effective radio performance for over 20 years. During that time, RIM has avoided designs like the one Apple used in the iPhone 4 and instead has used innovative designs which reduce the risk for dropped calls, especially in areas of lower coverage. One thing is for certain, RIM's customers don't need to use a case for their BlackBerry smartphone to maintain proper connectivity. Apple clearly made certain design decisions and it should take responsibility for these decisions rather than trying to draw RIM and others into a situation that relates specifically to Apple."

CrackBerry Kevin ran a death-grip poll on CrackBerry.com and as of this writing 14% had the death-grip, 72% did not, and 14% saw bars drop but come back.

When you factor in that we don't know how RIM calculates bars, what dropping and coming back up means, and add the crucial crazy that makes iPhone 4 antenna issues so maddening -- that not everyone has them, and the whole situation has snowballed into equal parts fact and frenzy,

Steve Jobs might have done better mentioning the industry-wide death-grip problem as a bullet point and saving the videos for the Q&A if he got called on it because there was every chance it could come back to bite him in the a$$. Likewise, RIM might have been better off not making a public statement, going with humor, and letting the public weigh in for a while because this can now come back and bite them in their own co-a$$es. Why?

Same reason Steve Jobs' should never have sent that "hold different, get a case" email response. RIM has now cued everyone in a weak signal with a BlackBerry to rev up their YouTube engines and start asking for free cases. TiPb's already getting email:

I reported last week to [that] I could do just what Apple said in their news conference today, it was nothing against Blackberry. I own a Bold 9700 and a iphone 4 and my statement was it was no big deal. This is my third Blackberry and third iPhone. For you to say you have avoided the problem is in fact a misstatement. Your phone does the same thing without a case on it that the iPhone does and it does no harm to either phone.

Now for the big question Since my Bold 9700 does what the iPhone does are you going to fix my phone because it must be defective.

Thank You, Dwight

TiPb's own Alli Kazmucha, who's in a weak signal area, has been able to reproduce the BlackBerry Bold 9700 death-grip as well:

I managed to replicate [the death-grip] on a 9700 in less than 15 seconds, and on a 3GS.

We have bad coverage around a certain area in town, and like Apple said, in poor coverage areas it can be replicated. People forget that key point.

I've replicated it on my iPhone 3GS as well.

Nokia and RIM have both chosen to respond. We'll see if Samsung does as well, and if HTC and Motorola decide to get into "antennagate" as well. One thing's for certain, Phil Nickinson from Android Central is right when he says any new phone that gets released from any company now is going to be under increased -- and in some cases ridiculous -- antenna scrutiny.

Good.

Video after the break.

Update: Boy Genius shows the BlackBerry 9650 on Verizon dropping to one bar when death-gripped in the second video after the break...

[CrackBerry.com]

Rene Ritchie

Editor-in-Chief of iMore, co-host of Iterate, Debug, Review, The TV Show, Vector, ZEN & TECH, and MacBreak Weekly podcasts. Cook, grappler, photon wrangler. Follow him on Twitter and Google+.

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There are 83 comments. Add yours.

Jason says:

very interesting. i only know one person who has a blackberry, not sure what model it is, but im definitly gonna try this with his phone next time i see him.

joe says:

on a side note, i can hold my droid any way I want and not loose a signal. boo ya

Cdeeron says:

I have tested 9700, 9650, 8530 so ATT, VzW and Sprint all drop bars....where is my free case RIM, put up or shutup....

Pimp Lucious says:

Regardless of being able to duplicate the problem on other handsets, Steve came across like a whiney child, "but but but, they have signal drop too." That's why I love all the negativity been thrown Apples way, knock them and the douche fanboys down a few notches. Classy response RIM. Why the hell should a CEO have to crack jokes, because Steve is running around screaming like a little b*tch?

excaliburca says:

If Apple is going to publically call out out handset manufacturers you don't think they're going to respond?
RIM responded reasonably I think... antenna gain may be an industry challenge but Apple's issues are design specific. Apple should own up to it.

deadp1xel says:

LOL god people must not have lives to be getting upset over a damn phone. RIM makes decent stuff but really? No antenna issues RIM? Ha! I had PLENTY of signal issues with your piece of crap 8900.

jtz5 says:

Good for RIM...Steve Jobs was making too many excuses. Why couldn't Apple have put a coating on to minimize problems? They f'ed up and at least should stick to defending their own phone and not bashing others. You didn't see Toyota say GM has had X more recalls than we have had. Pathetic, actually.

Adam says:

I can tell you this. I had Verizon for 6 years, in which I owned several Blackberrys. In that six years I MAYBE had 10 dropped calls. With AT&T I have at least 1 dropped call a day. Granted my 3GS dropped more calls than my iPhone 4. However, I still continue to have calls on my 4.
My choice to stay with the iPhone is not because of AT&T's coverage, but the design, usability, and functionality of the iPhone. If I didn't have such a kick a$$ phone I would drop AT&T in a minute.
I don't blame the phone, I blame the network. Let's put blame where blame is due. Let's pump our brakes and realize that Apple made an incredible phone, with a minor design flaw, but is offering a solution. I vote we gather our pitchforks and head away from Culpitino and head to AT&T's headquarters.

Robbie Alexander says:

If Apple was inaccurate they can sue them for defamation or something similar, if they don't sue them and just make claims in writing they mean nothing.

Jason says:

@freaknasty
obviously if other phones have this problem to and you were getting slammed as hard as apple is right now wouldnt you be a little whiny too? not trying to stick up for him by any means he kinda put himself into this whole situation, but the man has to be under alot of stress.
as for them saying apples trying to draw RIM into the whole thing....not so much...he was using one of the most popular smartphones (probably the most popular) as an example. and why wouldnt you? android was listed in there as well as windows 7. if they had the problem they would use the iphone as an example to. situation that relates specifically to apple? the deathgrip has been demonstrated on many other devices as well. and not just in the press conference. but in youtube videos by everyday users.
i agree with it being a flawed design. and it shouldnt of made its way past the testing. but it did. if you guys dont like apple, dont go to an apple related site. all there is to it

Bob Marley14 says:

Excuse me, but when was it declared that a Blackberry is a great "phone"? Like, never. BB's are known to be great email devices but horrible phones.
By having those clowns from RIM even comment on Jobs press conference was total stupidity on their part, and all it does is keep Apple and iPhone 4 in the spotlight. Jobs and the folks at Apple are celebrating, for sure.

iphonemilk says:

Can i ask a question??
Who has an iPhone and reads on crackberry.com??
I mean really?
I don't trust that Poll even if you paid me to trust it.

Mark says:

Tried this on my Storm2 last night and within a minute, it switches to 1x, then looses all bars, finally displays "searching CDMA." Don't have my POS Eris any more, so I can't test on that.

Tino72 says:

@Adam, you blame the network?? That's laughable you fanboy. I just deities off a blackberry bold and alternate fro a htc desire and now the apple i4 I clearly drop calls from it over anything else besides my old 3G iPhone. Iphone made a brilliant device just. Horrid phone. I've had Att, Cingular for 6 yrs and never had problems before the iPhone graced us with it's presence.

iphonemilk says:

Buy an iPhone 4 , get a free case.
Buy any other phone? you don't.
What does this mean? thanks to internet trolls, buying an iPhone 4 has even more of a benefit now.

fastlane says:

Interestingly, RIM's response won't be aired every half hour on major news networks for a week (like Apple's antenna was).
Why?
Because the mainstream news doesn't give a damn about these companies or their phones, and won't even acknowledge their insignificant, non-newsworthy responses toward Apple's comments.
Which drives home the point that the iPhone 4's antenna is way overblown simply because it's The Almighty Apple's antenna, and not some 3rd-rate competitor's.
Show's over, folks.

Tony says:

I switched to the iPhone 4 from an HTC Droid Eris... Believe me, I loved Android and the Eris and am not trying to bash it at all and miss some Android features... But the Eris had reception issues to begin with. It's not a secret and it was all over the forums from the beginning. My Eris would always show fluctuating bars. It would constantly go from full service down to 1 bar, and back up. I actually have better reception with my iPhone 4 and less dropped calls than I had with Verizon in my own house. I'm not a "Apple Fanboy" or anything, but I think Steve Jobs was right in showing that other companies have this same issue. The HTC Eris definitely does...
I also tested the signal issue yesterday with a Blackberry Tour and Blackberry Bold. They both also dropped bars. Jobs was defending the fact that other companies also have this issue and it is not iPhone exclusive.

CJ says:

@fastlane
Nail - Head - Hammer - Ding

taylorh says:

The somewhat idiotic part of this response from the RIM CEO is the fact that Steve Jobs specifically said "these are all great phones" and the POINT of his demonstration was to prove that this is an industry wude challenge an in fact not a problem. At no point did he say that the Blackbeery was flawed, crap, or you shouldn't buy one. He never insulted RIM.
This reminds me of political campaigns where another candidate conveniently takes something the opposition said completely out of context so they can act all offended and make them out to be a bad person. Complete horse ****.

tworhythms says:

Everyone's forgetting one important fact, the iPhone4 has an issue when only 1 finger is placed in the right spot. Forget "the death grip"! I have owned far too many phones to count any more, including many iPhones, and I can honestly say that the Blackberry has been a great phone with far less calls dropped than my iPhone. Having said that, the iPhone is truly an incredible game changer. Would Blackberry OS6 ever have been a thought without Apple? Let's not lose sight of the facts.

shaolinfinest says:

Im sorry I can not just sit here and have people say Blackberry's are plagued with the same issues as the iPhone 4. I am a proud owner of an iPhone 4, this is my first officially owned iPhone. I have an iPhone 3GS but it is not activated, I just gave it to a pretty girl cause she needed one lol. But I am happy with my iPhone 4 but to say my Bold 9700 has the same issues as my iPhone 4 is just a lie in my eyes. I work in a building that is well sheltered, it has 2 stores on top of us and a parking deck so you know it is hard to get reception. When other iPhone users come in their coverage goes to crap, no matter what iPhone you have. Now my Bold 9700 and my Droid Incredible picks up coverage in the building like a champ. Guess what, I have no case on none of my devices even the iPhone 4, I think cases take away from the beauty of the design of the phone.
Now if anyone wants to test this in real world situation by all means come visit me and you will see RIM devices out perform iPhones any day.

Itsme says:

I own an iPhone 4 and a BB Bold 9700 and after I saw the conference I tested my BB to see if it would do the same thing and it did. But at the same time I have no problems out of either of my phones they both work just fine. So due to the conference I wonder what RIM would do about that. Frankly I don't care because I only experience the issue when it was brought to my attention, just the same as the iPhone. No one knew that would happen until it someone brought it to our attention, so then everybody started testing it and there goes the hoopla. Apple and RIM both make good products and I must say I have no problem out of either of my devices.

ddot196 says:

So all the big smartphones apparently do this? So what. As long as you aren't dropping calls you're fine. Your hand screws with antenna reception. End of story. It jus so happens that apple showed you where there antenna was on the iPhone 4. So everyone payed close attention to it and freaked out. Get over it. It's a great phone if you don't like it get something else and stop complaining.

Joe McG says:

Perspective has been totally lost here. Who cares how many "bars" are shown on your phone? We're not even comparing the same cellular technology. In the end, if the phone makes calls and receives/sends data in an acceptable manner, the bars don't matter.
Are Blackberry bold owners gonna throw a fit now because their phone works as it always has, even though they never noticed the death grip "problem"?
Give me a break. Just enjoy your phone and stop yapping...

Joe McG says:

@Charles
Damn pretty girls, always getting free phones and whatnot...

shaolinfinest says:

@Joe McG
Ha ha, before I got the phone in my hands she had already asked for it. I think she knows she has me wrapped around her fingers. Oh well I am enjoying my iPhone 4. Now I can not wait until the white one comes out cause I am getting that too.

Tony says:

dDot, you're right... People just need to get over it lol.
If you don't like the iPhone then don't buy it or return it... If you have a cover on your phone then this doesn't affect you anyway. I have a case on my iPhone because I don't want it to get scratched etc., so I don't really have the signal issue.

El Sapo says:

Hahaha, Jobs' acting like a little boy "Hey I screwed up, but look they did too so it's not just my fault" PATHETIC!
Instead of trying to divert attention to others by pointing fingers, deal with your failure already!. But hey, it's iPhone and fans will forgive anything, even the fact that Apple will continue to sell faulty units in rubber bands.
Nobody in the whole planet, uses the "death grip" to talk or simply use one's phone, I mean people use some common sense here!
So if your phone looses signal by the touch of ONLY ONE finger, your phone is FAULTY Period.

Tis says:

These press releases are just pleas not to get sued. Sad but true.

TK says:

This is really funny. Apple is trying to bring other companies through the mud to make it seem like their problem isn't as bad.
Apple decided to choose form over function, as they always do and it came back and bit them in the butt this time.
The difference between any other company and Apple is, another company would issue a recall instead of playing pass the buck.
Yeah Apple got a lot of press for this antenna issue and everyone is saying that it's blown out of proportion. But it's Apple's fault for it being blown out of proportion:
1) they covered it up, by saying there was no issue, told their employees to say that there was no issues
2) told people to hold the phone differently
3) told people to buy a case
4) wouldn't honor the warranty or apple care warranty
5) making it sound like the update would fix the antenna issue, when it was just a cosmetic fix, then saying that there's been a reception display issue since the first iPhone
6) blamed it on poor network coverage
This is what people call, bad business practice. Yes there's other phones that have antenna issues, but they don't garner much press because they admit to it, then help the customers and then the bad press goes away a lot faster. Unlike Apple (refer to my six points above), a company with too much pride, tried to keep that pride and are still trying to keep that pride by dragging other companies through the dirt which only makes them look worse and gets more bad press.

NickFL2011 says:

Honestly getting tired of all this. The fact that this phenomenom happens does not mean any of these phones are defective, but simply a side effect of physics and possibly a poor design decision. If people don't like it then don't buy he iPhone, or any other phone that may have a similar issue. It's the nature of these type of devices.... there's always going to be a certain grip, or certain object you put your phone next to that may cause it to lose signal. I should have complained years ago when my motorola flip phone didn't like sitting in my car's cup holder..... sigh.

Tom Stephens says:

Yawn. Time to move on Rene. It isn't news anymore. Flogging a dead horse.

iPheuria says:

This is getting so old arghhhh When cell phones burst onto the scene it was a new technology. So if your signal dropped you sucked it up and waited until you had reception. I don't even want to talk about my first Nokia that thing I was happy the times I got reception. Now tech has progressed so far that everyone has become un-forgiving and expects perfection from everything they buy, it's a lucky thing Steve never called this phone magical. I can understand defending your product but in that wording I personally feel RIM went a little too far. My brother has crushed his fourth BB the other day out of frustration so don't pretend like your devices are the utopia of manufacturing. If the companies were smart they would get behind Apple's explanation which would then mean they wouldn't get called out this way when they make a product that has problems.

Draino623 says:

RIM never stated they didn't have problems. Steve is just a little beeotch!

Jimbo says:

@TK
Well said. It is not so much the engineering problem - which has yet to bite me in daily use - but Apple's 5-stages-of-grief or spoiled child response to the issue which grates.

Chuck says:

I used to use my blackberry on verizon to make hour+ long conference calls and rarely had a dropped connection. Then I bought an iPhone on ATT and experience dropped calls so often I don't dare use it for business. The iPhone is NOT a business phone, that is certain. It is just a fun phone that is good when you don't have to talk to people often.

Mike says:

I'm so sick of all of this. It's old news now.. If you don't like the iPhone 4 or having major reception issues, please return it and get your money back!

kayno says:

hahahahahaha!! I love that everyone else is having an issue now! The point is its a normal issue and Apple just gave away bumpers for something that's normal because they love their customers.. now everyone wants something free.. lets see how much RIM really loves you.. LOL!

Daniel says:

@Fastlane
The reason why the mainstream media isn't going to sensationalize RIM's response is twofold. 
First, Apple is a PR powerhouse. They know that the best time to deliver any type of potentially upsetting news is on a Friday so the response/backlash is marginalized by the cushion of the weekend.
Last, is the fact that Jobs is absolutely correct. EVERY type of cellphone has a signal attenuation issue. That's just one of the caveats to owning a cellphone. Whether you notice it, are affected by it or just don't care, doesn't negate the fact that the actual numerical values of the phone's reception is altered by placement of hands. 
The solution is really simple. If you don't like the phone, return it and wait for iPhone 5. If you love the phone and are slightly irritated with the reception issue, get one of the free cases Apple is offering. Fin. 

Bill says:

Ever since we all got paranoid about brain cancer being caused by cell phone antennae, we've had antennae in the bottom of the phone (so we can get hand cancer). Apple's faux-pas was externalizing the antenna and thereby allowing people to touch it. I always case my expensive toys, so , for me at least, it's a non-issue. I have a friend who has no problem with his iP4 BUT he's lives and works in an area with a really strong signal.

Captaincane64 says:

I own a blackberry 9700 for work and an iPhone 3GS and I can replicate the problems on both. So way steve said yesterday was correct in that smartphones do have these problems.
At the end if the day if the product doesn't make you happy or live up to expectations take it back and get a refund. When the proximity sensor gets fixed then I am gonna upgrade until then the 3GS will do.
Be adults and make adult decisions if you can't live with the antennae issue return it and move on with your life.

Caleb says:

One thing that I think everyone needs to remember is that RIM started it- when all the reports started going around- who was the first to pipe up and rub it in Apple's face? Nokia, Motorola, and RIM. And Apple wasn't really picking on RIM. They were simply showing that the fact of the matter is that almost any phone will have signal degradation if you hold it in a certain way. The difference is some put their antennas in more convenient places than Apple did with the i4- this I do blame them for. But it also really depends greatly on the network and the coverage you have at the moment- I have the issue with my iPhone when I'm at my house (where I have poor coverage) but when I'm outside I don't have the issue at all.

Kris says:

Boo Hoo RIM. Sucks when someone points out something that we've known all along.
Sure the iPhone may suffer problems more or less depending on who you ask. But the fact is, some people are able to replicate the death grip signal drop on all types of phones.
It sucks even worse when Apple shows it off because you know everyone is watching.

Lequang242 says:

Yup! This is how Apple fix the antenna problem.
Distraction! You are not helping iPhone users Rene! Rene  

Webvex says:

Apple/Steve really stepped in it, and the press conf will only make it worse. Instead of a full mea culpa, he made excuses. The antenna problem is not the same as other phones. They don't have external antennas. The problem is not the "death grip" or covering the antenna. It is bridging or shorting two antennas. The first is a design limitation, but the second is a design flaw, a mistake. Apple has tried to conflate the two. The strategy of pointing the finger at others is childish, "look they do it too," and just plain incorrect. I do like Apple, but they need a good spanking on this one.

icebike says:

Wait, this is the exact same thing you said about Nokia.
Everybody else should shut up now fuss Steve has spoken.
Is that the best you can do Rene?

Jay says:

@jtz5, Actually Toyota did just that when they got blamed for the whole gas pedal stuck down debacle. They did several studies on other brands of cars and named the car companies that had the same issues as them. Its all business.
@everyone else,
The bottom line here is that the numbers don't lie. A .55% complaint rate and a 1.7% return rate is NOTHING! If people were really that concerned with their death grip issues... RETURN YOUR PHONE! I'm tired of all this BS over nothing. If this was any other company besides Apple. It wouldn't even be an issue. I'm not a fanboy just a dude stating the facts. Don't even have an iPhone yet...

Shane says:

Me personally am only experiencing a little signal drop off when I take the bumper off the phone. No drop calls. I had a lot of dropped calls with my 3gs. So I will gladly accept a refund for the bumper and feel that I do have the best phone available. The thing that bothers me the most is that instead of visiting all these websites to get the latest news, all you can read about anymore is this BS. We all know about it now, lets talk about something else. Its getting a little old now.

jentino says:

C'mon Stevie.. Don't distract all the fact with those lame excuse and showing others(HH) signal. I tought yesterday's event will be apple press conference? Why there's other product showed, so people could blame them, too? Grow up! Be a Gentleman! Face it and fix it. I'm an apple loyal user, but I don't want to be a "stupid" fanboy.

James T. Kirk says:

Leadership 101. Admit your errors, and apologize. There will be blood, that's inevitable.- Jack Welch. The outcome has been the exact opposite. Moreover, he unprofessionally attacks other companies, and specifically their products. I'm really shocked. Personally, I thought this was childish (I agree with Jentino), highly unprofessional, and has made many enemies he's attacked, and more who are willing to see he's being irrational, and tyrannical. I'm sure he's well aware of Rim's immediate posture (reactive, and rightfully so, as well as other companies), yet went ahead and done so. Ceaser supposedly screwed his best friends wife. Steve Jobs, thinks he's a god in the smart phone market. His same attitude that had him originally thrown out of the company he built, will find himself thrown out of the industry he wants to lead. Unless, he takes the time to make a public apology. This I don't think he will do.
In regards to the smart phone products in general, I agree of the possibility that there would be some antenuation issues among smart phones, as well as cell phones. However, I think Steve isn't being truthful, in that his attenuation issue is very severe. And he's making everyone else in the game, who's trying to be honest and provide quality products to their customers, look just as poor.
A pretty sad act, to say the least Steve?

striatic says:

if the specific problem the iphone has is just like every other smartphone available, we can expect the external antenna design to continue with the next generation, with no mitigation for bridging the antennas.
just because other phones exhibit problems due to cupping the phone, doesn't mean those problems aren't more pronounced on the iphone or that there is a distinct issue with bridging as opposed to cupping.
that said, apple is doing everything rational to rectify the bridging issue by offering free cases. so good for them.
it's too bad that they had to go out taking shots at other companies for issues that might be unrelated to the specific bridging failure on the iPhone 4. but whatever, that will all be forgotten soon enough.

tora says:

Why is everyone blaiming apple etc, imo it's the networks fault for not having good signal coverage/strength. I'm fed up with getting low or no signal (2G, 3G is rare at best) in tons of areas. Isn't it about time we had full signal in every living area at least?

Daver says:

Um, James T Kirk, did you bother to step away from your posture-iffic pile-on happy soap box and actually WATCH the press conference?
If you did, then you ought to be lauding Jobs for following Mr. Welch's advice to a T.

  1. We are not perfect
  2. Nobody is
  3. We made mistakes
  4. Other phones are (here's where RIM is helping you make hay) "GREAT PHONES" and have the issue. (did u hear that? Re-read)
  5. We will give you your money back
  6. We will five you a free case
  7. Or your money back.

Consumer Reports has a good reputation but a long sordid past of wild unsubstantiation (look up the Audi issue, a false claim which nearly put Audi out of the US).
But nevertheless, jobs, after an admittedly arrogant first week, came around.
Got that James? How is that different from Welch's advice other than you want it to be so?
Yeah, thought as much. Enjoy your RIM, and your weekend. I'm stickin with my phones, my crappy AT&t.

Kenneth says:

@@iPhoneMilk s Did you even watch that video? Who in their right mind is going to hold the phone like that? Yes I've been able to replicate it on my BB Storm, but not during a call, where as I have seen examples of the death grip causing a call to be lost with the iPhone, I have not with BlackBerry.
Bottom line, the BlackBerry model that Steve pointed too has been out for quite a while, doesn't anyone think we would have seen something from owners if it was a REAL problem? Nothing, their has been no mass complaint from BlackBerry owners about their antenna that I have seen. Before this fiasco, the BlackBerry was never complained about as having this issue!

striatic says:

"Got that James? How is that different from Welch’s advice other than you want it to be so?"
im not james, but the presentation didn't meet the "admit your errors" part of welch's suggestion.
what specific mistakes did apple actually admit to? they admitted the bars formula was faulty .. but beyond that they implied that the iPhone 4's problems were like those of any other phone.
i think what people wanted to hear apple admit is that the iPhone 4 is easier to cut out signal on than the previous iPhones, because of the external antenna design and the possibility of bridging the antennas. apple never admitted that and implied the problem was like that of any other phone, which it isn't. at least not entirely.

JPSAL says:

Bottom line: IF YOU THINK THE F------ IPHONE 4 WILL DROP CALLS, DON'T BUY IT! It's not like Steve Jobs will get sad if some Android and Blackberry owners come here to hate.

striatic says:

"Bottom line: IF YOU THINK THE F—— IPHONE 4 WILL DROP CALLS, DON’T BUY IT! "
Bottom line: there shouldn't be a "bottom line".
and thankfully now there isn't.
if i "THINK THE F—— IPHONE 4 WILL DROP CALLS" or am worried enough about it that it makes me conscious of the problem while using the phone [which is a problem in and of itself] then i get a free case from apple.
i can like the iPhone 4, despite its obvious flaw, and want to continue using it while complaining to apple that there is a problem and they should do their best to address the issue now/fix it in the next version.
if i don't want to use a case with the phone, the case doesn't really help but complaining about it still makes sense since it will light a fire under apple to fix it for the next version.
proclaiming "return it or shut up" as the only option doesn't make any sense.

TG says:

When I had my blackberry tour I would get reception where other non balckberrys wouldn't. Apple dosent need to bring RIM into their problems. I love Apple and own a 3GS but that's just wrong. Seems like all Apple cares about is the money at this point. I don't think they plan on fixing the iphone 4 antenna problem anytime soon.

tom says:

now i want the iphone 4 even more :) BB Storm sucks :(

jentino says:

That's what I called "stupid" Fanboy. Btw, Tom, it's Bold 9700 not Storm. Watch the press conference first than comment.

OhMyGoodness says:

Thats was a down right b**ch move by Steve... Some stand up guy he is. Instead of saying you know what we have some issues, we are going to work on it. He tries and bring the biggest competitor down with him lol. "This Changes Everything... Again" my ass. Face Time was an effort to compete with something as simple as BBM. And of the 20 or so people i know that have the new iPhone 4, maybe 5 actually use Face Time on a regular. To bad u NEED Wifi to use it. Would have been sweet to be able and sit out on the beach and video chat. SHOUT OUT to all you people that thought you were getting innovation when you really got more of what Blackberry has ALREADY been having. Folders, Multitasking, integrated email folders LMaO. YOU GUYS ARE SUCH SUCKERS!!!

Chris Griffin says:

I have tried to drop coverage via death grip on several occasions on my 9000 with all results showing no drop. Just sayin'...
Just own up, Steve.

iphonemilk says:

"Own up steve"
What do you people want? jesus christ, you want him to just roll over and die or something? You people are worse then Liberals. THERE IS no end for you.
If you don't like the iPhone 4, don't buy it, If you bought one and you don't like it, Take it back.
Meanwhile i'll keep mine because i love it.

Lee says:

NOTE. I HAD A BOLD 9000 AND IT WOULD DROP BARS IF I HELD IT WRONG IN WEEK AREAS ALL THE TIME. I THOUGHT NOTHING OF IT, AS ALL CELL PHONES HAVE DONE THAT AND I HAVE HAD THEM FOR OVER SOME 25 YEARS!
THERE ARE A BUNCH OF PANZY CRY BABYES OUT THERE, THAN THE CREAPS JUMP ON THE BANDWAGON, GRANDSTANDING.
THE iPHONE ISSUE.....IS A NON ISSUE....ENOUGH SAID....
ALSO, I WILL NEVER CONSIDER A BLACKBERRY AGAIN, BECAUSE OF THEIR CRAP MEMO!!!!
GET A LIFE WIMPS!!!
Ls

Nebo says:

@lee. No need to make stuff up. The first cell phone was not even introduced to the US market 25 years ago. When it was introduced it was available in Chicago only and provided by Ameritech. It was so large and heavy it could not even fit in a briefcase. What became know as the Motorola Brick came later and that would at lease fit in a briefcase. Writing in capital letters also does nothing to help your point. The fact is all cell phones are subject to certain limitations with aerial design and signal loss holding the unit in your hand does not help the efficiency of signal reception. However, most cell phone companies have done a lot of work in the area of human interface and try and come up with antenna designs that take this into consideration. Steve was very keen to tell us that Apple had done something very innovative with antenna design at the IP4 launch, they did something that no one had done before he said. Perhaps no one had done it before because it was not a good idea. The original phones all had antenna's at the top right of the phone and they were always covered in rubber or plastic. Apple made a mistake and will eventually change the design. It is bad form for Steve not to admit this.

Hookem99 says:

@iPhoneMilk...... +1
Not sure they're worse than Liberals, but definitely damn close!
Next story please!

Alexander says:

That press conference was a sad day for Apple. It couldve been over in two minutes with
- hello
- we made a mistake
- we're sorry
- free cases for all
Steve being defensive and trudging through the muck to compare to RIM et al was a sad day for Apple. It was downright embarrassing.
Steve: if you're reading this... Maybe you should have stayed in Hawaii.

Jake says:

Wow Steve, you're sounding like a conservative pundit. Instead of owning up and admitting to your mistake, you're trying to bring everyone else down. It's pathetic.

Iphone says:

great vey informative for readers..

Iphone says:

great very informative for readers..

sheath94 says:

Att is the carried I see for the blackberry jobs is holding, something oddly coincidental about that to you too? Oh didn't think so.
Yup must be the phone, couldn't be the carrier who started bragging about their coverage of what was it 97% of Americans? Oh, and forget three g, (I haven't seen their 3g map advertised... wonder why that is?) My tale is apple needs to break up with their carrier, because the relationship just isn't working well.
Apple you're awesome!

iVenom says:

This will be a problem for all new phones " can I death grip it"? This is now a monster that will live on for a while.

observer says:

"nobody's perfect". You know what, I take the bad with the good- and I know the consequences of staying with a particular phone and deal with it. I also have a blackberry for work, and have had many versions thru the years. Good think they have replaceable batteries though (a feature), because every single one needs a hard reset pull once a week to keep working properly...

Jerry Hildenbrand says:

Why is everyone focusing on the "Death Grip"? All cell phones ever made will lose signal when the antenna is blocked. Only one will when a finger is placed in a very accessible trouble spot. All Steve needed to say --
"Some of you have issues. Not very many at all. We stand behind our decisions and designs. If you're one of the half percentile who have signal issues, this free bumper case will help. Thanks for coming."

Webvex says:

@Gbhil, they're focusing on the "Death Grip" because it's the only illusion left to keep them in denial of the true problem. That, or they're purposely trying to confuse and mislead people. I'm trying to be generous and assume they really can't admit to themselves it is a hardware design flaw unique to the iPhone 4.

Macboy74 says:

@art vandelay 20,000 out of 3,000,000 plus with the issue is a lot? Ok well them 20,000 have a solution and they don't have to pay for it. Or they can return it. And get something else. This will not hurt apple in the least. This is way overblown. Glad I don't have any problems. I love this f-ing thing. And Steve is correct this does happen on other phones my gf's bb tour does this my brothers moto droid does this. And my old 3GS did it. Lol but for some reason the phone in question my iPhone 4 does not. Weird very weird.

iPheuria says:

No those videos must be doctored not on a BB they aren't gonna be drawn into Apple's problems. Anyway like I said these manufacturers if they were smart would have sided with Apple's info because like someone said any new phones will be under extra scrutiny for reception.

tearle says:

People as much as i hate Steve jobs and apple and the Iphone.. Coverage or bad coverage.... they are just cell phones.. and are made the cheapest way can be made.. and will never work perfect... we see new phones every month.. if they worked we wouldnt be buying new ones.. but i will keep my black berry thank you

Macboy74 says:

@art vandelay. That's right I am a fanboy. For apple and many brands. You have a problem with beat it.

Kinggod says:

When did the issue become about a "death grip"? Obviously holding any phone in such a manner will cause signal to drop. The real issue is that one point on the iPhone 4 causes signal to drop. That's a much bigger concern seeing as how most people don't grip their phones like a gorilla. A normal grip in the "wrong" spot is enough for it to drop a call.