UPDATED! Steve Speaks: 3G Bug Affects 2%, Firmware Fix Soon
UPDATE: Former Apple employee Chuq Von Rospach has just blogged about a meeting with an unnamed current Apple insider who let slip that:
90% of the disconnects are initiated inside the phone, which would exonerate AT&T. Most of the disconnects are being generated by crashes in the driver code for the 3G chip, which comes from the chip vendor, not something Apple written and outside of Apple's direct control. Complicating this -- even though Apple is handing over "here is the bug, here is the fix, update the driver", the turnaround from the vendor on driver updates is on the order of 2-3 months. Said, um, lack of urgency not exactly making people inside the projects happy.
Understated much? If he's not, as he says, being lied to, Chuq thinks this lack of responsiveness may be why Apple went ahead and bought PA Semi a few months back: to bring the chipset in house and more fully under their own control.
Remember that 3G network connection glitch we mentioned a few days back? The one that might be a hardware problem with a software fix? (Apple Insider weighs in today that this could, in fact, be likely). MacRumors is reporting that Steve Jobs, as he or someone acting on his behalf is sometimes want to do, has responded to an email inquiry about it, and provided the following:
We are working on some bugs which affect around 2% of the iPhones shipped, and hope to have a software update soon.
If this is authentic, and 2% is a solid number, given that the iPhone 3G sold 1 million units its first weekend, and may be over 3 million units now, that's a staggering 60,000+ users potentially affected, -- never mind 20 more countries set to launch later this week.
Unless Apple pushes out a 2.0.2 hotfix, firmware 2.1 has been in beta for a while already, and in general rumored to be heading towards a September-ish release (probably to coincide or follow up Apple's tradition fall iPod and Mac product Special Event, which last year introduced both the iPod Touch and the WiFi Music Store).
Casey recently posted that the current 2.1 beta removed support for the Push Notification services (Apple's conceptual replacement for multitasking functionality) to allow for more internal development, but perhaps also to fast-track the 3G fix?
That could leave the 2% in the slow lane for a while still...