Apple responds to iPhone 4 reception issue

For many, it's been a long time coming.

Apple has officially responded to the countless complaints and reports of service dropping on the iPhone 4 when holding it a certain way. Without further ado, here's the letter:

Dear iPhone 4 Users,

The iPhone 4 has been the most successful product launch in Apple’s history. It has been judged by reviewers around the world to be the best smartphone ever, and users have told us that they love it. So we were surprised when we read reports of reception problems, and we immediately began investigating them. Here is what we have learned.

To start with, gripping almost any mobile phone in certain ways will reduce its reception by 1 or more bars. This is true of iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, as well as many Droid, Nokia and RIM phones. But some users have reported that iPhone 4 can drop 4 or 5 bars when tightly held in a way which covers the black strip in the lower left corner of the metal band. This is a far bigger drop than normal, and as a result some have accused the iPhone 4 of having a faulty antenna design.

At the same time, we continue to read articles and receive hundreds of emails from users saying that iPhone 4 reception is better than the iPhone 3GS. They are delighted. This matches our own experience and testing. What can explain all of this?

We have discovered the cause of this dramatic drop in bars, and it is both simple and surprising.

Upon investigation, we were stunned to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong. Our formula, in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength. For example, we sometimes display 4 bars when we should be displaying as few as 2 bars. Users observing a drop of several bars when they grip their iPhone in a certain way are most likely in an area with very weak signal strength, but they don’t know it because we are erroneously displaying 4 or 5 bars. Their big drop in bars is because their high bars were never real in the first place.

To fix this, we are adopting AT&T’s recently recommended formula for calculating how many bars to display for a given signal strength. The real signal strength remains the same, but the iPhone’s bars will report it far more accurately, providing users a much better indication of the reception they will get in a given area. We are also making bars 1, 2 and 3 a bit taller so they will be easier to see.

We will issue a free software update within a few weeks that incorporates the corrected formula. Since this mistake has been present since the original iPhone, this software update will also be available for the iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3G.

We have gone back to our labs and retested everything, and the results are the same— the iPhone 4’s wireless performance is the best we have ever shipped. For the vast majority of users who have not been troubled by this issue, this software update will only make your bars more accurate. For those who have had concerns, we apologize for any anxiety we may have caused.

As a reminder, if you are not fully satisfied, you can return your undamaged iPhone to any Apple Retail Store or the online Apple Store within 30 days of purchase for a full refund.

We hope you love the iPhone 4 as much as we do.

Thank you for your patience and support.

Apple

So, a software update it is then. It seems that Apple acknowledges that there is a problem, but is still denying that the hardware is at fault. I guess we'll have to see if the software update appeases the horde. 

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So Apple basically just wrote itself a love letter over its own product and made its customers feel that if they complain they are in the wrong. I wonder if the jury will buy this load of crap as Apple tries to defend itself in court.

Said it before and I say it again. People who buy apple products are muppets. They pay over the odds for a overpriced status symbols.

Apple HQ, July 5th, 1:30 AM:

Jobs: "Okay guys, we really gotta figure this one out. We said our formula is wrong, right?"
Engineers (chorus): "Right."
Jobs: "Then make it wrong and fix it."
Engineer 1: "I think I know how to do that."
Jobs: "How is that?"
Engineer: "Well, we said that the iPhone kept showing more bars than it actually had, right? It's a clever lie, bec-"
Jobs: "It's not really a lie though. It's called marketing."
-silence-
Engineer: "Well anyway, I found the fix. Let's just change the formula so that when it detects the bars are gone and the user is doing any kind of activity, let's raise the bars to 3 or 4."
Jobs: "But they'll notice that, won't they?"
Engineer: "Not really, they'll be thinking that they're trying to do something wrong with the iPhone, since the signal will be coming and going."
Jobs: "Good, good. And in any case, that'll give us the perfect situation to call it software-fault."
All cheer.

Apple: Hold differently.

their just stalling and giving false hope until everyone's 30 days are up. if your dumb enough to fall for this, then enjoy lugging a peace of junk around for 2 years.

Ad Man Gamer said,
their just stalling and giving false hope until everyone's 30 days are up. if your dumb enough to fall for this, then enjoy lugging a peace of junk around for 2 years.

Perfect win. +The bars I got on my iPhone 4. Don't worry, I'm right handed.

I thought some even lost the actual connection under specific circumstances? Surely an algorithm to calculate signal strength is pretty meaningless when there is no connection/signal in the first place? How a software update can fix that I have no idea.

I think the ones that can't even replicate the signal loss are either 1) totally lying or 2) are in serious danger of microwave radiation because they're sitting in such high RF they are probably being cooked from the inside out as they type replies

Circlejerk. Plain and simple.

1) They first report on all the customers raving about their increased signal, of which most are probably going by the inaccurate bars being displayed.

2) Then they report that there's a software issue which causes people to lose 4-5 bars when 'they hold it wrong' due to their algorithm which will be fixed in a software update.

When they fix #2, #1 customers will 180 their comments because suddenly, they don't have the massive signal gains they thought they had in the first place.

Again, Apple, thanks for the circlejerk.

So, how does this explain the multiple iPhone 3GS videos side-by-side to an iPhone 4?

Clearly there is a software problem in iOS4 because since the update my iPhone 3GS has stopped receiving data in places that I used to receive data (specifically: work). However, it does not explain the problems where you can clearly see the iPhone 3GS has a stronger signal (wrong formula or not).

I'm very disappointed with the way Apple are handling this issue. Today - after nearly ten days of horrific signal - I returned my iPhone 4 and reverted back to an iPhone 3G S. Hopefully the next model will will feature a redesigned antenna - preferably a design that actually works.

NotableNebula said,
I'm very disappointed with the way Apple are handling this issue. Today - after nearly ten days of horrific signal - I returned my iPhone 4 and reverted back to an iPhone 3G S. Hopefully the next model will will feature a redesigned antenna - preferably a design that actually works.

It's already out. It's called NOT an iPhone.

Have a look at this blog entry. He explains a bit of stuff about the antenna and how it works. He also explains why antennas have to be a the bottom of the phone.

http://www.antennasys.com/ante...pple-iphone-4-antennas.html

Clearly there is an issue with covering the break in the antenna with your left hand, but really, its not that hard to hold it slightly different or get one of those phone covers so you don't disrupt the signal.

It is said that the problem exists in Phone 3GS but why there is no such signal drop in my Phone 3GS ?
If it's not hardware problem, why touching the band can make that drop?
Seems that it will not be fixed in 30 days. If anyone waits for the fix, he cannot return the flaw phone afterwards <- that's the trap?

So it was a problem with computing math on a scale of 1 to 5 bars?

So Apple can't do math up to 5 and the dropped calls are just a myth too?

I can possibly believe Apple can't calcuate to 5 accurately, but when I can grab the phone and drop calls consistently, I think they are lying.

So back to Droid until Win7 Phones are available... (Sadly I wish everyone had the resources/$$ to change their phones and not be held hostage by a bad product.)

Just because something is made by Apple does not give it a mulligan when it is crap.

att has been an issue for 4 1/2 years for me .we had them for 4 years. for 3 years 9 mos their favorite thing to tell us was it was the phone well between 2 of us we tried 3 different phones.it was THEM.it still is them.i'm pretty upset apple people get a class action suit as far as i'm concerned that company should go down. they were on their way out and steve jobs saved them from certain death.i hate to see an american icon like att bite the big one BUT BAD MANAGEMENT is BAD MANAGEMENT.

Well here's the thing guys.
Get your iPhone 3GS' out! In 30 days, they're going to be worth a lot more on Ebay!!

Whether the phone displays 5 bars or no bars the real matter is signal level at the antenna input. This typically in the microvolt range and while that is a tiny amount it is very adequate for receivers to function and meet all specs. The notion that a display formula somehow can affect the number of microvolts of alternating radio frequency voltage at the antenna input is ludicrous. I have a BSEE in microwave engineering and folks that IS the bottom line. It is well known the the human body can act as a shield to incoming RF and also act as a capacitor and affect tuned radio frequency circuits thus diminishing signal strength regardless if you have 5 bars or what ever on a display screen. Apple's 'explanation' is BS..and is a cover-up tactic as many have already guessed.

Charlie Bear said,
Whether the phone displays 5 bars or no bars the real matter is signal level at the antenna input. This typically in the microvolt range and while that is a tiny amount it is very adequate for receivers to function and meet all specs. The notion that a display formula somehow can affect the number of microvolts of alternating radio frequency voltage at the antenna input is ludicrous. I have a BSEE in microwave engineering and folks that IS the bottom line. It is well known the the human body can act as a shield to incoming RF and also act as a capacitor and affect tuned radio frequency circuits thus diminishing signal strength regardless if you have 5 bars or what ever on a display screen. Apple's 'explanation' is BS..and is a cover-up tactic as many have already guessed.

BSEE with microwave engineering emphasis? Have you applied @Apple yet? They could probably use your help about now

This letter pretty much translates to: "hey we had an issue with calculating signal strength and we are fixing it however your calls drop because of AT&T"
I expect M$ and Google to send a thank you letter for boosting their sales this Q

I have a new Acronym for APPLE and I think it fits. Fanboys - I have given the copyright to MS and Google.

A = Always
P = Purporting
P = Preposterous
L = Lameduck
E = Excuses

I = Ignorant
P = People
O = Obtain
D = Devices
S = Socially

So if they correct the formula - can they still claim that this is the best reception phone they have every produced? 5 bars into 3 and 3 bars into 1 and 1 into none?

This is NOT a fix for the problem, AT ALL. All this is going to do is draw more accurate signal bars at the top of the phone.. this is NOT going to solve the dropped calls issue and ridiculously slow data speed issue.

Apple once again refuse to acknowledge the real issue and just do what they should have done from the beginning: recall the faulty phones and redesign the poor antenna system. Why cant the bands meet in a location where somebody isn't likely to put their fingers, like the top of the phone?

Best customer service my ass

Lame excuses for a hardware problem aside, the funny part is my iPhone 3G generally has 1-2 bars less than any other AT&T phone I put next to it. So now they're saying that not only does my 3G *appear* to be less than the other phones, but that it's actually 1-2 bars *lower* than it says, putting it's reception more like 2-4 bars below other AT&T phones!

Maybe the slow data rates and dropped calls aren't all AT&T's fault?

JonathanMarston said,
Lame excuses for a hardware problem aside, the funny part is my iPhone 3G generally has 1-2 bars less than any other AT&T phone I put next to it. So now they're saying that not only does my 3G *appear* to be less than the other phones, but that it's actually 1-2 bars *lower* than it says, putting it's reception more like 2-4 bars below other AT&T phones!

Maybe the slow data rates and dropped calls aren't all AT&T's fault?

My data rates have been much faster since iPhone 4 (so long as I don't touch its g-spot and make its legs buckle).

Omega192 said,
"as well as many Droid, Nokia and RIM phones."

Apple, "Droid" isn't a manufacturer, nor OS -_-

+1
I knooow...!!! AHAHAHAH !
...but, long live "Droid".

Omega192 said,
"as well as many Droid, Nokia and RIM phones."

Apple, "Droid" isn't a manufacturer, nor OS -_-

I think most people in the 'know' can tell you it is a Verizon copyright used by Motorola devices running a version of Google's Android OS.

However this is a little long to write out, and most people on the street call most Android based phones 'Droids' or a 'Type of Droid'.

Is there a better slang for the Android based phones that I haven't ran into? Would Android be better?

The point is the important part of these devices isn't if they are made by Motorola or HTC, it is the OS that is running on them and the features that this allows the phones.

Just like we use the term PC or Windows PCs when there is no such thing as a Windows or Microsoft made PC. Ok?

WTF ??? Are these guys for real ?? So many people complain of the same problem when exactly doing the same thing with their phones, this is a HARDWARE issue and they know it, they just don't want to admit it and face the thousands of phone replacements they will have to do.

I'm in line of sight of my network operators mobile phone macrocell base station right now (approx 100m away) and I have 5 bars - I can still reproduce the iphone 4 problem so I very much doubt it's the fact that it's down to "low signal".

"Our formula, in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should..."

Its hard to imagine this got through their hard-core QA un-noticed. Looks like this was done on purpose but later back-fired.

Astra.Xtreme said,
It's not Apple's fault that AT&T blows...

I truly wanted to leave a comment saying I was surprised to see no fan boy comments and people actually speaking for themselves for once....dammit >.<

vette said,

I truly wanted to leave a comment saying I was surprised to see no fan boy comments and people actually speaking for themselves for once....dammit >.<

Good theory, too bad it's affecting people on other providers as well, though.

Why the hell are you complaining anyway? STOP BUYING THEIR GOD DAMN PRODUCTS.... when original iphone came out, everyone complained how limited it is, only supporting edge and no mms and crap like that, that didnt stop you to buy next generation and next generation and.... and now you all complain how signal drops and they dont take responsibility... im sure you will all forget this again just give it another year... No offence but Apple is just overpriced pice of sh... ONLY thing i like with iphone is touchscreen, in rest of functions other manufactures surpassed them long ago... im sure iphone still can manage simple stereo bluetooth headphones? Am i right? Few kb in bluetooth driver and no, they just cant make this avilable.

This is the most retarded explanation I have ever heard in my life. If it so as apple states, how the heck they explain the calls dropping? Blame the wrong formula. WTF?!?!

kukubau said,
This is the most retarded explanation I have ever heard in my life. If it so as apple states, how the heck they explain the calls dropping? Blame the wrong formula. WTF?!?!

I guess what they are going to be pointing at is your calls are dropping because you have a weak signal to begin with (even if it shows 5 bars).... they are basically shifting the blame onto AT&T and "updating" their bar indicators to make it appear that way.

It is total bull****.

They are blaming the dropped calls on low signal levels. Those low levels were being misreported with the wrong formula, making users think they had higher signal than they really had. How is that hard to understand?

roadwarrior said,
They are blaming the dropped calls on low signal levels. Those low levels were being misreported with the wrong formula, making users think they had higher signal than they really had. How is that hard to understand?

Lol. It isn't hard to understand, and the graph shows what is happening. I want to see a comparison of bar-to-bar signal strength for other phones though. To me, it seems like this whole signal strength bar problem wasn't a problem until just now.... So it does seem rather convenient that what was once not an issue is now an issue. But it won't be making people's drop call problem any better. Just pixels on the screen will be different.

roadwarrior said,
They are blaming the dropped calls on low signal levels. Those low levels were being misreported with the wrong formula, making users think they had higher signal than they really had. How is that hard to understand?

Can you defend your previous APPLE a little more? People in good reception areas are dropping calls where they normally haven't before. So signal bar formula miscalculations or not the calls are dropped regardless of bars shown. Even if they corrected the formula where they got 3 bars and now it is really one then explain the reason for the dropped calls now?

Your apple-logic doesn't compute. If people who had bad reception and a ton of dropped calls before they wouldn't just pay for another upgrade to get bad reception again.

Is this easier to understand now? SAME PEOPLE, SAME LOCATION, DIFFERENT PHONE(IPHONE 4) = DROPPED CALLS with NEW PHONE(IPHONE 4G). Bars or no bars the calls are bring dropped.

Another typical Apple statement that reinforces the fact that Apple thinks that all its users are either idiots, retards, or 3 years old...

And this is to the loyal user base who defend Apple at the drop of a hat... I have an iPhone 3G. Loved it for what it was. But now, this company's just going a bit too far...

I am in the same boat as much as I love the phone I can't use it. I have a case on and all, doesn't make a difference. Also I am having issues even using the Internet on 3G. The only way I can surf the web like now is to turn off 3G. Once I put it back on Internet doesn't work... Anyone else having this issue as well I know a few of my friends r. Its like when he Internet works on 3G it's like surfing the web on dial up speed.

lilsnoop40 said,
I am in the same boat as much as I love the phone I can't use it. I have a case on and all, doesn't make a difference. Also I am having issues even using the Internet on 3G. The only way I can surf the web like now is to turn off 3G. Once I put it back on Internet doesn't work... Anyone else having this issue as well I know a few of my friends r. Its like when he Internet works on 3G it's like surfing the web on dial up speed.

Yikes! Call your provider up and see if there is an issue in your area with their towers or servers. When I'm on 2G I get a pretty crappy ~100kbps connection. 3G has been solid here and giving me 3500kbps down and 1500kbps up with AT&T.

the only reason it is going to take weeks to get the fix out, is because after 30 days, you cant return the phone. How much do you guys want to bet the fix comes out close to the 23rd or later of this month? then we cant return our iphone, and i for one am going to return it. I dropped 7 calls today, and i look retarded holding the phone with one finger while talking on it.

Sounds to me like they have used an incorrect formula to make it look like people had more bars than they actually do. I don't think this was a mistake on Apple. I think they did that on purpose to make people believe that their phones had better reception. Now, they are going to pull back because sooner or later someone will figure that out and blow their cover up.
So in effect, their formula isn't wrong. They purposely did that to make the reception look better.

I ask myself if problems Jobs had at WWDC asking everyone to shutdown their Wifi has something to do with this:P

Nelsoon said,
I ask myself if problems Jobs had at WWDC asking everyone to shutdown their Wifi has something to do with this:P

NO! Nobody has mentioned problems with WiFi reception ANYWHERE! Will you people stop pointing at the problem Jobs had with his WiFi connection at the WWDC and saying that this is the same thing. IT IS NOT THE SAME THING <--- read that please. WiFi works fine for me no matter how I grip the phone. Cellular connection is the problem.

The Wifi problems at WWDC was because the spectrum was totally saturated in a small area. There were hundreds of APs being used in the conference hall, and the interference was simply too much for anything to overcome. I'm sure that many of the people in the conference were having trouble as well because of it.

roadwarrior said,
The Wifi problems at WWDC was because the spectrum was totally saturated in a small area. There were hundreds of APs being used in the conference hall, and the interference was simply too much for anything to overcome. I'm sure that many of the people in the conference were having trouble as well because of it.

Care to explain then how come the iPhone 3GS was able to load the page while the iPhone 4 failed... Both were using the same wifi connection

So basically, Apple is covering up a fault by unmasking a con they have that makes their phones seem better than they really are in terms of signal strength.

This is 2010. Signal strengths should be better, and Apple and other manufacturers should be held to a standardized formula for displaying signal strength.

Interesting. It seems that they are indirectly admitting that there is an issue with the iPhone 4 antenna. As stated in letter:

1. iPhone 4 has the best reception of any iPhone, ever.
2. Ever since the original iPhone, they have been using a "totally wrong" formula for calculating how many bars to show on the phone.
3. They will be releasing a software update in the next few weeks to change the formula to address the issue.

What this seems to say is that for the past 3 years, they have been over stating the signal strength in their iPhones. This apparently was not an issue however (because it wasn't obvious) until the new iPhone 4 was released.

So they are admitting to 2 problems:

1. iPhone, iPhone 3G, and iPhone 3Gs all really have poorer signal than users have been made to believe by the bar display in the phone. The update will all of a sudden cause these phones to appear to have much less signal. So these phones *may* actually have pretty bad reception then.
2. iPhone 4, because of it's new design, may have improved reception in a vacuum, but at the same time it is very sensitive to external interference (namely contact with hands), and therefore loses signal more easily than previous generations because of this. This issue is what cause the 3 year old formula used for bar display to all of a sudden look sooo wrong, although it seemed sooo right up until now.

Good summary! That is exactly how I read the press release too. Some commenters here that are showing their poor comprehension skills should really read this post.

People have bitched about dropped calls on iPhones since the beginning, so this discovery of the incorrect formula goes a long way towards explaining that.

roadwarrior said,
People have bitched about dropped calls on iPhones since the beginning, so this discovery of the incorrect formula goes a long way towards explaining that.

But it doesn't go far enough, IMHO. It doesn't fix anything other than pixels on the screen...

roadwarrior said,
People have bitched about dropped calls on iPhones since the beginning, so this discovery of the incorrect formula goes a long way towards explaining that.

And yet all of a sudden, the problem is much worse for the iPhone 4?

"At the same time, we continue to read articles and receive hundreds of emails from users saying that iPhone 4 reception is better than the iPhone 3GS."

" in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should "

Maybe, just maybe, people are reporting better reception because it's showing two more bars than it should >_<

giantpotato said,
"At the same time, we continue to read articles and receive hundreds of emails from users saying that iPhone 4 reception is better than the iPhone 3GS."

" in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should "

Maybe, just maybe, people are reporting better reception because it's showing two more bars than it should >_<

No doubt... they say that people are reporting better reception...and then they go on to say that the bars that are indicating reception levels are incorrect and actually showing a higher reception in areas where there is a lower one. Umm.....wow... so all those people's reports of better reception is based on bad data . Booo...Apple....proof read your ****..does it make any sense?

roadwarrior said,
Both of you are missing one critical point here though: they have been using the incorrect formula in ALL models of the iPhone.

And yet there are real world tests that have proven that the 3GS works better than the 4 for making calls.

The Lurk Master said,
Wow, apple cant admit they messed up???

Of course not... They don't mess up. They are infallable, unlike their arch enemy, Microsoft.... *rolls eyes*

The Lurk Master said,
Wow, apple cant admit they messed up???

Huh? They just admitted that they have been using an incorrect signal strength formula since the very first iPhone model.

roadwarrior said,

Huh? They just admitted that they have been using an incorrect signal strength formula since the very first iPhone model.


Yeah, because thats like, totally the problem and all.

I'm sorry, but these kinds of letters really bother me. Can't a company as big as Apple just admit a problem and issue a recall? Or at least they could let people come into stores and swap for a working model. A renowned wireless specialist has confirmed the issue to be hardware related. Why is Apple in such denial?

Benjamin Rubenstein said,
I'm sorry, but these kinds of letters really bother me. Can't a company as big as Apple just admit a problem and issue a recall? Or at least they could let people come into stores and swap for a working model. A renowned wireless specialist has confirmed the issue to be hardware related. Why is Apple in such denial?

I've asked other people the same question re: coverups in all different companies and industries.... The bottom line is, they would rather get caught with their pants down than take off their OWN pants.... U know what I mean?

Benjamin Rubenstein said,
I'm sorry, but these kinds of letters really bother me. Can't a company as big as Apple just admit a problem and issue a recall? Or at least they could let people come into stores and swap for a working model. A renowned wireless specialist has confirmed the issue to be hardware related. Why is Apple in such denial?

Recalls are expensive as hell. Lets say Apple made 100 million bucks off iPhone sales (hypothetical). And a hypothetical recall then costs them 200 million bucks. They will spend 199 million buck in lawyers and testing to avoid a recall. My point is exaggerated but it is kinda true. Companies will spend crazy amounts of money trying to mitigate a recall.

It takes something like a product causing fires or hurting someone before a company will issue a recall. It is a rare thing for a company to recall an entire product because of a design flaw like this one.

Like ive said before Apple should have sent IPhone to all carriers made their money quick and got out.The only reason alot of people want them is cause they cant get them on thier network,by the time they will be able to get one every other company that makes phones will have something just as good or better.

Apples thinking makes me laugh.

We have a problem how can we cover it up?....

How about we say... the signal calculations are wrong and that in places they had an awesome signal its actually ment to be lower?

Hmm... I like it! Do it!
*makes a call on his android phone to Steve Jobs*
"Got it fixed! Were saying our signal calculations are wrong what you think?"
*evil laugh*
"Speeeendid!"

If it was just a formula why is it going to take 'weeks' to get a fix out. You know, just saying. Sure there's testing and procedures but if all it was was moving around a few number like they make it out to be then surely they could release a fix that only addresses this issue in a timely manner in order to deflect some of the bad PR.


If the fix is weeks away it sounds like they are buying their time for something more substantial.

BeLGaRaTh said,
It's apple people, they can lie all they want, they know people will still buy their products

Your sad face tends to tell me you are one of those people.

Shadrack said,
I was really hoping that they would come out and say there were batch problems with the iPhone .
They may be forced to if the software fix doesn't correct the issue for most iPhone 4 users.

I have high hopes, since I know when the phone goes into "Searching..." it just automatically cuts off phone calls and data even though it might have enough of a signal to do those functions.

melted98 said,
Apple are worse than microsoft for covering up things

They said that you can return the phone for full refund if you are not happy.

Go Apple! this is why Motorola and HTC will be good to invest in now - as people are gonna shy away from this faulty hardware! Dropping calls is a serious issue, something I don't think showing 'accurate' bars will fix.

Like their marketing though. sell 600,000 faulty iPhone's
wait 31 days to release a simple 'software' update to mask a hardware flaw.
people apply update, it don't fix issue, now they are stuck with the $800 paperweight as its past the 30 day return policy.

Good to know Apple has all along falsely shown signal strength though. Their phones are really not that great it seems. Guess when you drop almost a grand on a device its good to have engineers that can't design or calculate simple signal levels.

So they think people are really going to accept this? I mean, people on the same network same area are fine with their Androids but now with the iPhone. Weak single? I think not.

Typical BS from Apple and people are accepting it...they have their fans brain washed.

This sounded too stupid, is like if they were talking about Wifi signal and not the Reception itself. Furthermore, they are stating that AT&T is **** for providing low quality signals, which is erroneous, because the problem is worldwide, not AT&Ts.

In conclusion and IMHO, I believe they are just evading the problem, and they "may fix it", the same way that Sony silently upgrades its PS3.

If this statement is true, then why does having a bumper solve the formula problem? Do the bumpers have some super secret hack built into them?

"The iPhone 4 has been the most successful product launch in Apple's history. It has been judged by reviewers around the world to be the best smartphone ever...."

Haven't seen those reviews..... Apple and their PR spin. Just keep feeding them your money.

shakey said,
"The iPhone 4 has been the most successful product launch in Apple's history. It has been judged by reviewers around the world to be the best smartphone ever...."

Haven't seen those reviews..... Apple and their PR spin. Just keep feeding them your money.

http://www.engadget.com/2010/06/22/iphone-4-review/

We're not going to beat around the bush -- in our approximation, the iPhone 4 is the best smartphone on the market right now.

shakey said,

Best phone that drops calls... I'd have to say this review missed something that makes a phone a phone, the ability to make, hold, and maintain calls. Sorry, but if your phone is having trouble doing that, best phone my ass.


Agreed.
Now tell me again about non-biased reviews.

Redestium said,
Way to mask the issue. Now people will still lose reception but show full bars. Good fix.

You read it wrong. Right now, the formula shows too many bars for the signal level. They are correcting it so that it shows the correct number of bars.

SK[ said,]One question though. If this is a software issue, shouldn't the 3G and 3GS be affected too?

Eh? They're not saying that this will solve the problem. They're saying that the fix will report signal strength correctly. The iPhone 4 will still drop bars when held in that particular way. But it will drop say... 1 or 2 bars while having 1 or 2 bars instead of dropping 4 or 5 bars while having 4 or 5 bars.

Metodi Mitov said,
Eh? They're not saying that this will solve the problem. They're saying that the fix will report signal strength correctly. The iPhone 4 will still drop bars when held in that particular way. But it will drop say... 1 or 2 bars while having 1 or 2 bars instead of dropping 4 or 5 bars while having 4 or 5 bars.

Eh? As I read it, they are saying the problem that the whole world is talking about is a problem with their software not hardware. It can be fixed by a simple software upgrade. The problem I have is they say this exists in all iterations of the iPhone. My point was why hasn't this been noticed before on the other iPhone's? In other words maybe they didn't exist from the same "death grip" flaw.

I really can't comment as I haven't seen an iPhone 4, seen or heard anyone say they are loosing calls because of this. As always its people that don't have said product doing all the talking. That said I still stand by that Apple suck as a company, but thats not enough to put me off their very good products.

Edited by ]SK[, Jul 2 2010, 4:50pm :

Am I seriously the first person who is going to question whether or not that was an Apple miscalculation or if it was done intentionally to show better performance by AT&T as misleading evidence of their "more bars in more places"? Any other AT&T customers currently questioning if that glitch exists in other phones?

Joseph B. Arrington said,
Am I seriously the first person who is going to question whether or not that was an Apple miscalculation or if it was done intentionally to show better performance by AT&T as misleading evidence of their "more bars in more places"? Any other AT&T customers currently questioning if that glitch exists in other phones?

+1

Joseph B. Arrington said,
Am I seriously the first person who is going to question whether or not that was an Apple miscalculation or if it was done intentionally to show better performance by AT&T as misleading evidence of their "more bars in more places"? Any other AT&T customers currently questioning if that glitch exists in other phones?

This seems very likely, how would they get the formula wrong so it shows a lot of bars in a area with bad reception thus making the bars useless, doesn't look like apple can be trusted especially if they don't just come out and say it.

Apple are you SERIOUS? You used a "new" formula as opposed to the old formula because you didn't remember the old formula? How long have you been with AT&T? Not your first Rodeo you clowns.
Also the signal strength has not to do with dropped calls. You can be at 0 bars and hold calls with many networks. The software doesn't drop you - the RECEPTION does.

I have the HTC EVO and I get 2 bars at two locations I frequent when I am in town. Once is my home and one is starbucks. One gives me around 3.5-4.5 Mb/s and the other location gives me roughly 6 Mb/s although both are two bars.

Besides if you are reverting back to the old formula that AT&T has provided to you for years yet it will take you at least a month for the update? If you know this update it now! You tried it with Exchange Sync update? Oh wait - that one failed.

Also how is the Exchange Sync working out for ya? Oh wait - its not - unless telling people to reduce the amount of appointments they have is a solution.

mrmomoman said,
Apple are you SERIOUS? You used a "new" formula as opposed to the old formula because you didn't remember the old formula? How long have you been with AT&T? Not your first Rodeo you clowns.
Also the signal strength has not to do with dropped calls. You can be at 0 bars and hold calls with many networks. The software doesn't drop you - the RECEPTION does.

I have the HTC EVO and I get 2 bars at two locations I frequent when I am in town. Once is my home and one is starbucks. One gives me around 3.5-4.5 Mb/s and the other location gives me roughly 6 Mb/s although both are two bars.

Besides if you are reverting back to the old formula that AT&T has provided to you for years yet it will take you at least a month for the update? If you know this update it now! You tried it with Exchange Sync update? Oh wait - that one failed.

Also how is the Exchange Sync working out for ya? Oh wait - its not - unless telling people to reduce the amount of appointments they have is a solution.


Done right.

mrmomoman said,
Apple are you SERIOUS? You used a "new" formula as opposed to the old formula because you didn't remember the old formula? How long have you been with AT&T? Not your first Rodeo you clowns.

They have been using the same formula since the first model of the iPhone (which you would know if you bothered to read past the first line of their explanation). AT&T has provided them with a newer, more accurate formula, and they will start using that now.

saxondale. said,
Surely this applies to the iPad 3G??

Do you hold it with your left hand to your ear, covering the antenna?
I didn't think so either.

Arrogant Apple is arrogant. It borders criminal investigation. Sounds like they're really trying to cover this up. O_o

If I grip my crappy Nokia at the top it loses 3-4 bars. Just bad antenna placement on the iPhone really, should have been at the top, rather than at the lower left(?)

So how long till the 4S comes out? With a new "double" antenna (like motorolla is doing), one other 'new' feature (iChat probably lol).

DeathLace said,
So how long till the 4S comes out? With a new "double" antenna (like motorolla is doing), one other 'new' feature (iChat probably lol).

Sorry. Apple only give you ONE feature per year. Next year's phone will be able to make calls!

This is exactly the excuse some of you guys predicted apple would give as an explanation for this issue.

As a test i tried holding various phones ranging from various HTC devices to standard phones and none of them dropped any bars. And i tried holding them in every way possible.

It's a shame for the people who already bought an iphone 4.

Sjokkel said,
This is exactly the excuse some of you guys predicted apple would give as an explanation for this issue.

As a test i tried holding various phones ranging from various HTC devices to standard phones and none of them dropped any bars. And i tried holding them in every way possible.

It's a shame for the people who already bought an iphone 4.


It does depend on how strong your signal is in the first place. In an area of high signal strength, I can't get my iPhone 4 to drop any bars. In an area pretty far away from the nearest cell tower, gripping the phone causes signal loss. The range from 5 bars to 4 bars on most signal indicators is around 40 dBm. The range from 4 bars to 1 bar is around 20 dBm.

Elliott said,

It does depend on how strong your signal is in the first place. In an area of high signal strength, I can't get my iPhone 4 to drop any bars. In an area pretty far away from the nearest cell tower, gripping the phone causes signal loss. The range from 5 bars to 4 bars on most signal indicators is around 40 dBm. The range from 4 bars to 1 bar is around 20 dBm.

Yup. I have experienced the same thing. If I'm somewhere with a "strong" 5 bar connection, I can't get it to drop more than 1 bar (if even that) no matter how I "grip" the phone. At my house the iPhone indicates 5 bars, but when I grip that lower left-hand black notch, the signal goes to oblivion. So obviously the number of bars is not very representative of the signal strength ATM, and there needs to be an update. But this doesn't fix the issue.....

HAHAHA.

No one has seen this?


we were stunned to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong. Our formula, in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should.

What a coincidence...... Apple with their marketing ploy again....

"mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength" this would explain all the dropped calls on the the att network, its been falsely showing network coverage for years.

rootedroid said,
"mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength" this would explain all the dropped calls on the the att network, its been falsely showing network coverage for years.

Ouch! That means Verizon means the 3G coverage war

private int getNewSignalStrenght() {return getSignalStrenght() * 0.16;}

This formula could solve all of their problems. Even in the area with full signal it would show only 1 bar.

Critical Error said,
private int getNewSignalStrenght() {return getSignalStrenght() * 0.16;}

This formula could solve all of their problems. Even in the area with full signal it would show only 1 bar.

Only if you spell "strength" correctly <jk>

I don't get it. The software update would fix the bar reporting issue, but the iphone would still drop calls right? Or is dropping calls related to signal bar reporting?

Hani said,
I don't get it. The software update would fix the bar reporting issue, but the iphone would still drop calls right? Or is dropping calls related to signal bar reporting?

OK, since it seems a lot of people have reading comprehension problems: Any phone is going to drop calls when signal level drops too low. The only way you know the signal level is by looking at the bars. If the bars are telling you that you have 3 or 4 bars when you really only have none or one, then you are going to think you dropped a call for no reason when you really dropped it because the signal level was too low. This update will correctly report the signal levels.

roadwarrior said,

OK, since it seems a lot of people have reading comprehension problems: Any phone is going to drop calls when signal level drops too low. The only way you know the signal level is by looking at the bars. If the bars are telling you that you have 3 or 4 bars when you really only have none or one, then you are going to think you dropped a call for no reason when you really dropped it because the signal level was too low. This update will correctly report the signal levels.


The call dropping will still occur, no? I think that a fair amount of drop calling is happening because of something ****ed up in the iPhone hardware, and not in the signal strength.

Hani said,

The call dropping will still occur, no? I think that a fair amount of drop calling is happening because of something ****ed up in the iPhone hardware, and not in the signal strength.

It's only going to change bar reporting, nothing else. Calls will still drop.

I was gonna hold onto the phone till day 28 or so and see if the fix helps, wary them release the patch after the 30 day launch... Then what do u do return or not?

lilsnoop40 said,
I was gonna hold onto the phone till day 28 or so and see if the fix helps, wary them release the patch after the 30 day launch... Then what do u do return or not?

Return it, get a non iPhone, be happy forever after.

This is true of iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS, as well as many Droid, Nokia and RIM phones.

Guess Windows Phone isn't affected then ;-)

Bern@rd said,

Guess Windows Phone isn't affected then ;-)


This is total BS. I can hold my Droid anyway I want and it doesn't effect the signal AT ALL, no matter how hard I press my hand to it .

I cannot see how electro-magnetic waves are affected by my hands! cz i never had any problem with HTCs or Nokias..
<em>"Our formula, in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength."</em>
common this was the lamest excuse i have ever heard!!

Hohoho.. I cannot wait to see what's next. It would be exciting to see more angry IPhone users. It seriously makes my day. I want this company to fail but ... it simply won't I am afraid.

Well mad Iphone users are funny don't u think? I really enjoy it.

Apple is a new real life series to me. I cannot wait for the next episode.


This "fix" does absolutely nothing to fix the actual problem. What a bunch of idiots. When my contract is over towards the end of the year I am switching to Sprint and dumping the iPhone forever. I am so sick of Apple.

StevoFC said,
This "fix" does absolutely nothing to fix the actual problem. What a bunch of idiots. When my contract is over towards the end of the year I am switching to Sprint and dumping the iPhone forever. I am so sick of Apple.

I finally got to this point with them after all of this time too Loved my iPhones but am much happier now with a fresher device and a decent provider (not Sprint tho)

Ok, I came up with the solution.... Put the friggin' black strip at the top or bottom of the phone where people's hands don't touch it while they're talking. There you go Apple, no need to hire those 3 engineers. You can send me a check. Thank you.

prime2515102 said,
Ok, I came up with the solution.... Put the friggin' black strip at the top or bottom of the phone where people's hands don't touch it while they're talking. There you go Apple, no need to hire those 3 engineers. You can send me a check. Thank you.

ROFL!!! THIS IS SO WIN!!! +1

Get over it apple owners, this is what you paid for. Im not at all suprised apple is covering up the issue. Saying that the number of bars is incorrect. There completely avoiding the main issue with hoping to sway peoples fears about signal drops. Unless the bars are related to when the iPhone decides to drop a call this will not solve the problem. If anything this will further enrage users.

Just imagine, driving down the road holding your phone. You drop your call, you go to look at it and it NOW says 4 bars when previously it said 1 bar. Just causes another problem.

Honestly, im glad the iPhone 4 didn't come to more carriers this year, otherwise this issue would have been a much bigger deal. And I might have actually bought it. Good thing I didn't.

Don't worry, your update to "fix" it will be "free". Its sad they even have to mention that its going to be free.

Looks like the problem is just being bare-faced denied..

Good job I'm right handed then isn't it .. :-\ as a 'software update' I doubt will ammend the issue entirely!

Shaymuss said,
Looks like the problem is just being bare-faced denied..

Good job I'm right handed then isn't it .. :-\ as a 'software update' I doubt will ammend the issue entirely!

or "bar-faced" denied

Shaymuss said,
Looks like the problem is just being bare-faced denied..

Good job I'm right handed then isn't it .. :-\ as a 'software update' I doubt will ammend the issue entirely!

Mmm, no... being right-handed doesn't save you. What happens when you want your main (right) hand free to do something else and are holding the phone in your left? In fact, being left-handed might be better as you wouldn't be gripping the phone in your left hand as often as your right.

Hmm so why is it I have about 1 dropped call a month on my iPhone 3G and have dropped calls every time I use the iPhone 4???

And what about not holding my iPhone4, but just touching it? My iPhone 3G doesn't lose signal if I do that.

Apple sort it out, I'm not happy. What happened to the hole mantra of it just works? iPhone 4 just doesn't work.

next thing we will hear is that there is a massive shortage of iphones...no new shipments for three weeks, then bam a new phone arrives in the store that are magically "fixed"

bdsams said,
next thing we will hear is that there is a massive shortage of iphones...no new shipments for three weeks, then bam a new phone arrives in the store that are magically "fixed"

+1 yep, definitely going to buy them some time to fix the real problem...

bdsams said,
next thing we will hear is that there is a massive shortage of iphones...no new shipments for three weeks, then bam a new phone arrives in the store that are magically "fixed"

Thats what I'm thinking too. Prediction: lots of YouTube videso showing the reception differences between iPhone 4.0 and iPhone 4.1 in the coming months.

bdsams said,
next thing we will hear is that there is a massive shortage of iphones...no new shipments for three weeks, then bam a new phone arrives in the store that are magically "fixed"

Winner^

I can see how the formula would help if it is correctly done. However I am not convinced this is the problem. For Apple's sake its a whole lot easier to distribute a software fix than a massive hardware recall, its worth a shot

gamestargrinder said,
I can see how the formula would help if it is correctly done. However I am not convinced this is the problem. For Apple's sake its a whole lot easier to distribute a software fix than a massive hardware recall, its worth a shot
Well even if they show more bars with software its useless, because many people are dropping calls which would in turn ruin the companys reputation.

"gripping almost any mobile phone in certain ways will reduce its reception by 1 or more bars"
Uh, no. Not unless you're wearing some flappy gloves affair that produces a Faraday cage when wrapped around something. No mobile phone I have ever owned has been remotely affected by the way I hold it (I'm ambidextrous). Primarily because I don't have phones that have shortable antennae on the outside.

roadwarrior said,
I've had lots of different phones that were affected by this type of thing.

Idk, as much of a pos my G1 is (hate that fkn phone), if I try to cover it up with my hands it still doesn't drop bars.

Seems like good news, if you drink the Apple juice that is.

I definitely hope it is just some messed up display and the lower amount of bars causes something in the baseband to reduce the performance of the bandwidth causing the lower speeds whilst on data.

Even when Apple tells you what the issue is you stilll think they are "denying that the hardware is at fault". It is a software issue, and it makes sense. There are sometimes I have 3 bars and I drop a call. I'm sure they hired all those new reception staff to make the software read it more accurately.

Why would Apple make a phone the way it is and have a bad design such as that? The tests show that iPhone 4 has the best reception of any iPhone, and the tests are right, so please just drop this.

+1 to this, my reception has been excellent. And software makes sense, if the software is reporting to the phone there is no signal when there is signal (if what Apple are saying is correct) then it would make sense for everything to drop out as the software would think that the data connection is closed.

SweetRiverBaynes said,
Even when Apple tells you what the issue is you stilll think they are "denying that the hardware is at fault". It is a software issue, and it makes sense. There are sometimes I have 3 bars and I drop a call. I'm sure they hired all those new reception staff to make the software read it more accurately.

Why would Apple make a phone the way it is and have a bad design such as that? The tests show that iPhone 4 has the best reception of any iPhone, and the tests are right, so please just drop this.


I'm not all that convinced,
The tests done by anandtech still seem to suggest it is indeed a hardware fault and would have been unaffected by any faulty code used to calculate how many bars the iphone is showing "/
http://www.anandtech.com/show/3794/the-iphone-4-review/2

dave164 said,
+1 to this, my reception has been excellent. And software makes sense, if the software is reporting to the phone there is no signal when there is signal (if what Apple are saying is correct) then it would make sense for everything to drop out as the software would think that the data connection is closed.

It doesn't work that way. The bars on the top have nothing to do with the rest of the phone. Its the same for that phone as I've done for other phones and operating systems. The only thing the top of the phone is, is just a panel that goes accross the top that is refreshed either whenever there is a change or on a scheduled timer like every 10 seconds or less.

The "formula" they are talking about is just in the drawing portion of the bars. It probably draws the bars manually instead of using different pictures. Basically you loop through the number of bars you want and take that number and draw a rectangle that is 2*n+1 height by 2 pixels width with 2 pixels in between bars. Then you scale this all out by the resolution scale factor. The number of bars itself is determined by their routine and typically should go something like 5 bars for a signal strength > 80%, 4 > 60%, and so on.

This software update will probably have some "adjustment" code in it so that the bars are refreshed slower so you won't think covering it up is affecting your signal strength. It wouldn't be the first company that has done it and nobody would ever know the difference since the source is closed.

SweetRiverBaynes said,
Why would Apple make a phone the way it is and have a bad design such as that? The tests show that iPhone 4 has the best reception of any iPhone, and the tests are right, so please just drop this.

It has the best reception till it is held in a certain way. That's a faulty design.

SweetRiverBaynes said,
Even when Apple tells you what the issue is you stilll think they are "denying that the hardware is at fault". It is a software issue, and it makes sense. There are sometimes I have 3 bars and I drop a call. I'm sure they hired all those new reception staff to make the software read it more accurately.

Why would Apple make a phone the way it is and have a bad design such as that? The tests show that iPhone 4 has the best reception of any iPhone, and the tests are right, so please just drop this.

You're misunderstanding their letter. They're not saying they're going to issue a patch that will fix the way the bars work, and thus stop your phone from dropping calls; they're saying that you have been dropping calls all along because your service/location is crappy, and the iPhone 4 was just TELLING you your service was good. The *FREE* patch they're going to release will just report fewer bars all the time, with no impact on the reception you receive.

SweetRiverBaynes said,
I'm sure they hired all those new reception staff to make the software read it more accurately.
As someone that works in the RF field, as a software programmer, I can tell you that they don't need the Antenna engineers that they are hiring for the software communication.

SweetRiverBaynes said,
Why would Apple make a phone the way it is and have a bad design such as that?
I feel like the answer is that, in testing, they did not see it happen, or at least they did not see it happen and correlate the two. The other options are that they always had cases on to prevent spying, or leaking. Don't forget that Apple is disturbingly secretive.

SweetRiverBaynes said,
The tests show that iPhone 4 has the best reception of any iPhone, and the tests are right, so please just drop this.
I'm not convinced either way, but at the very least, there was a bad batch of iPhone 4's that do have a worse signal than previous iPhone's. There is plenty of evidence on YouTube with side-by-side examples.

wow, so those who could do some phone call with any other iphone and that now, can't with iphone 4 and it's "better reception" is because it doesn't display the real bar signal? Wow, if this update is really only that (because it can be something else apple hide from us), it won't fix anything.

Seriously? What about when you cover it and your 3G speed drops and stops loading the damn page. Come on Apple you can't be serious...this is a hardware issue!

man that is the biggest load of bull i've ever seen. they just want to make it look as if the bars drop less otherwise, they wouldn't need to update it for the 3G and 3GS as well.

Tom W said,
Seriously? What about when you cover it and your 3G speed drops and stops loading the damn page. Come on Apple you can't be serious...this is a hardware issue!

Apple is full of it. While I'm glad to see they're supposedly going back to a real bar calculation since we all knew they messed with in the earlier model, do they think we're idiots? Okay, so you're in an area where you currently have 4 bars. You put on the "death grip" and the signal drops, speeds slow and even possibly a dropped call. Now, please explain to me how showing the real number of bars changes anything? So it will now show 2 bars instead of the 4. You put on the "death grip". If anything at all, it would mean that its closer to all bars being gone. Speeds will still slow and calls would drop. It's like Apple is saying that when you put the "death grip" on the device, it somehow reverts to the AT&T's bar formula because it shows you so many bars going away. That makes no sense at all.

I stood in the Apple store. The iPhone 4 had 5 bars. I put on the "death grip" and it started going down to 1 bar...even 0. By Apple's logic, that same iPhone 4 should be showing 3 bars. If my "death grip" brought the signal to its knees from 5 bars, it sure as hell would bring it to its knees from 3 bars. What a joke. Apple needs to be sued for being so stupid.

Tom W said,
Seriously? What about when you cover it and your 3G speed drops and stops loading the damn page. Come on Apple you can't be serious...this is a hardware issue!

They sure didn't take into account the multiple videos people posted of an iPhone 4 right next to an older model with the 4 dropping the call and the other phone working.

GreyWolf said,

They sure didn't take into account the multiple videos people posted of an iPhone 4 right next to an older model with the 4 dropping the call and the other phone working.


LOL@Apple
I don't know which is worse. They claim they have been using the wrong formula all along, in all Iphone generations. How can we trust a company that can not get a mathematical formula, and a simple one, right?
Or, did they know that their formula was wrong all along?
In any case, I don't buy Apple's claims. It is a hardware issue. It is a bad antenna design.

Tom W said,
Seriously? What about when you cover it and your 3G speed drops and stops loading the damn page. Come on Apple you can't be serious...this is a hardware issue!

Exactly. This is a total wash. Their solution: show 1 bar of reception so when the user covers that spot they can say they lost only 1 bar of reception and that is why they lost their signal. Nevermind the fact that when you cover that spot you can drop a call, or you can see that 3.5mbps connection come to a sudden stop.

There is some credence to what Apple is saying.....however.... i noticed while I was in the middle of town I could not replicate the issue. I was still getting 4 bar reception no matter what I tried. But at home where I also have 5 bars, I can get it to drop out every time.

Tom W said,
Seriously? What about when you cover it and your 3G speed drops and stops loading the damn page. Come on Apple you can't be serious...this is a hardware issue!

The issue they state is true, THERE IS AN ACTUAL PROBLEM DISPLAYING BARS!!
But there's also an antenna problem.
If you want to actually read a scientific article about the issue instead of SPEAKING without KNOWING go to Gizmodo: http://gizmodo.com/5577812/why...-fix-your-reception-problem
In a nutshell, 5 bars might either mean as high as -50dB and as low as -90dB, so, if you do the hold grip, signal will drop (ANTENNA EFFECT) 20dB.
As such, sometimes the death grip will make iPhone show 5 bars if your signal is GREAT (-50-20=-70dB=5 bars) but if your signal is weak 5 bars, then it will drop to 1 or 0 (-90-20=-110dB=1 bar).
So, who would know, BOTH PROBLEMS EXIST. It's an antenna problem and a software problem.
Now stop saying stuff you obviously dont know. And to your information, this effect was news before that Apple answer, by a wireless expert (http://gizmodo.com/5576839/wir...blem-tests-we-got-a-problem )

Moker said,

i agree with the software portion whole heartedly.
what i'd really like to see, is someone load the 3gs software onto an iphone 4, and do the tests then.
with the video of someone loading os4 on an iphone 3gs, and it was still having the reception issues, that points towards a faulty OS. but it could be a myriad of different things. there is a problem, that much is evident. apple should suck it up, and admit they need to do more research into the issue, and not offer up pathetic excuses


If im not mistaken, this fault in the software has been there since ever.

Come on Apple you could have come up with a better excuse then "to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong." I find this hard to believe that Apple improperly calculated the signal strength and that AT&T "recently recommended formula for calculating how many bars to display for a given signal strength"

So I wonder if the previous iPhones had this crappy formula as well.

Apples response sounds like something that The Onion would do.

primortal said,
Come on Apple you could have come up with a better excuse then "to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong." I find this hard to believe that Apple improperly calculated the signal strength and that AT&T "recently recommended formula for calculating how many bars to display for a given signal strength"

with the update, even when there is no signal it will still display full bar. but then you can't make a call. this is very tricky and evil coverup. well, apple need to do whatever they need to.


So I wonder if the previous iPhones had this crappy formula as well.

Apples response sounds like something that The Onion would do.

[quote=primortal said,]Come on Apple you could have come up with a better excuse then "to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong." I find this hard to believe that Apple improperly calculated the signal strength and that AT&T "recently recommended formula for calculating how many bars to display for a given signal strength"

I agree. I have the iphone 3g and have never had a reception issue as bad as what people are having with the iphone 4. I feel they took a stance on the issue before they investigated and are now supporting that bad position. They don't want to have a massive recall and Apple is arrogant enough to think they can get away with it. Time will definitely tell...

Titan84 said,
I agree. I have the iphone 3g and have never had a reception issue as bad as what people are having with the iphone 4.

I have an iPhone 4 and am not having any problems. In fact, i can only think of one dropped call i have had on my iPhone 4 since i got it. Lots of FUD on the internet. Lots of people who don't have an iphone making up stories about how bad it is. Most probably work at Microsoft or Google.

I can make the signal bars go down if a cup the bottom of the phone in my fist, but this is a totally unnatural way to hold the phone and there is no way i would ever talk on the phone like that.

Apple reports "We are shocked, Shocked, SHOCKED that the formula for showing bars has been massively skewed in our favor since the very first iPhone was released!

We can't believe that AT&T didn't notice this either. After all, what did they have to gain by having phones report better reception that what they were actually getting?!

Notice how this terrible mistake has bitten us in the ass by forcing us to report the accurate results of our phone's capabilities when combined with a classic Engineering 101 mistake about not allowing antennae to come in contact with human beings...re: Attenuation of Signal.

Thank you for understanding, oh Apple faithful."

/sarcasm as I pass the Kool-Aid.

Seems like a cover up IMHO, why would they hire antenna engineers (three of them no less) if it was a software problem...

bdsams said,
Seems like a cover up IMHO, why would they hire antenna engineers (three of them no less) if it was a software problem...

Maybe they fired all of there old ones because of all this mess and starting the design again with new ones?

bdsams said,
Seems like a cover up IMHO, why would they hire antenna engineers (three of them no less) if it was a software problem...
Didn't those job postings go up before the phone was ever released? Didn't the job postings also relate to the iPad?

The PR statement still sounds like a coverup, but I don't know what the job postings prove unless Apple knew well beforehand that it was a problem. If that's the case, they're in serious trouble.

bdsams said,
Seems like a cover up IMHO, why would they hire antenna engineers (three of them no less) if it was a software problem...
To improve their antennas for their next generation iPhone and iPad?

bdsams said,
Seems like a cover up IMHO, why would they hire antenna engineers (three of them no less) if it was a software problem...

It definitely is a cover up. But dont think the job postings relate to that. What i dont understand is how holding an antenna, affects software?

Its the antenna multitouch sensitive? meaning only 2 fingers allowed to hold it? weird!

dimithrak said,

It definitely is a cover up. But dont think the job postings relate to that. What i dont understand is how holding an antenna, affects software?

Its the antenna multitouch sensitive? meaning only 2 fingers allowed to hold it? weird!

It doesn't affect the software. The software (since the original iPhone) has a faulty formula for calculating the signal strength and displaying the bars for that. It has ALWAYS displayed more bars than it should. This could be the source of a lot of previous claims of poor reception on the iPhone.

Bullhead said,

And you have what evidence to support this statement?

And you have what evidence to support that it is not?

To me, this sounds like a "turn it up to 11" moment - just redefine what the min and max are and that will make it better.

bdsams said,
Seems like a cover up IMHO, why would they hire antenna engineers (three of them no less) if it was a software problem...

i agree with u, it soudns like a cover up.
I bet their just going to so a software upadte that shows iphone users what apple wants to show them.

nohone said,
And you have what evidence to support that it is not?
Whatever happened to the "innocent until proven guilty" concept? Or do you live in a backwards country where it's the opposite way around?

Just more of the same bulldust that Jobs is spouting. The comparisons side by side of the iPhone4 with the earlier iPhones actually show that the signal level is LOWER on the iPohne4 than the earlier ones - not 2 bars higher than it really is.

No doubt that press release was written either by Jobs himself, or someone trying to cover up for his lies.

Denying there is a problem is nothing more then them trying to avoid liability and an expensive recall. Tactics like saying its a "software" issue are simply trying to buy them time while they hope the bad press will go away...

Pauleh said,
Whatever happened to the "innocent until proven guilty" concept? Or do you live in a backwards country where it's the opposite way around?

I live in the US. However, this is not a court of law, it is people trying to use a device we are told is magical, and the best available, made from the highest quality hardware and software. I have many Apple products, a MacBook Pro, Nano, iPhone (1st gen), Touch, iPad, and Mini. And I am fed up with the attitude you have in your post, that we cannot say anything negative about Apple, but the same of Apple fans is not expected when it is about Apple competitors. Vista was just software, and a vast majority of the problems was fixed in a SP, but did people like yourself give the benefit of the doubt when MS said they would fix the problems? When MS said that the Zune leap year bug would be fix its self a day later? But complain about problems (such as my MacBook overheating till the point the motherboard fried - twice), and it was my fault for not letting it ventilate, or I needed to wait until a software fix was available (like that would fix a dead MB), or, as a "Genius" told me, MacBooks do not have those problems, and I must have treated it poorly and therefore the warranty was void. Or how about when my first iPhone (about 4 months old) was bricked during a firmware upgrade, and they refused to fix it, claiming that it was jailbroken (it wasn't) and therefore out of warranty forcing me to either pay 100s of dollars to cancel my contract, or buy a new one.

So just in those few examples neither Apple fans nor Apple themselves were willing to go along with "innocent until proven guilty." The iPad will be the last Apple product I bought. I have used both MS and Apple, but to me, Apple long ago proven themselves to be guilty beyond all doubt.

Amazing how those "bumpers" (or a case, or holding it a different way) somehow fix this software problem with the bars....

Or as Apple would now like you to believe, you are in a "poor reception" area. Nothing to do with the Apple hardware itself.

I'm SHOCKED!