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  (Source: Business Insider)

Collection of discolored iPhone 4 displays  (Source: Gizmodo)
Look at the stars / Look how they shine for you / And everything you do / Yeah they were all yellow

This isn't the first time we've heard of display issues with a new Apple product launch, but hopefully it will be the last. There are reports from around the web that Apple's latest “magical” device, the iPhone 4, is suffering from yellow spots on its high resolution Retina display.

In some cases, the discoloration is showing up as yellow spots in various places on the iPhone's screen. In other cases, yellow lines are seen running across the screen.

According to Mac Rumors, some customers who have taken the iPhones to Apple's Genius Bar for replacements have been told to hold off until the phone is officially launched tomorrow. Given the supply issues that Apple is currently having with the iPhone 4, getting a timely replacement likely isn't guaranteed.

If you recall, Apple had problems with yellowed displays when the current generation iMac launched earlier this year. After numerous reports flooded the net from concerned customers, Apple finally acknowledged the problem in late February.

Apple's iPhone 4 sells for $199 for the 16GB model and $299 for the 32GB model.  

Updated 6/24/2010 @ 8:00 am

There are now numerous reports that there are also issues with the iPhone 4's cell signal dropping out when you hold the phone in your hand a certain way due to the external antenna. Conveniently, some people are suggesting that using Apple's colorful $30 "bumpers" solve the problem. 

Updated 6/24/2010 @ 8:44 am

Here's another interesting tidbit of information regarding the yellow screens on the iPhone 4 (and possibly explains why some people are seeing the yellowness go away magically after using the phone for a while). An Apple Insider forum poster, austingaijin, stated the following:

Apple is using a bonding agent called Organofunctional Silane Z-6011 to bond the layers of glass. Apparently, Apple (or more likely Foxconn) is shipping these products so quickly that the evaporation process is not complete. However, after one or two days of use, especially with the screen on, will complete the evaporation process and the yellow "blotches" will disappear.

How do I know? I was involved in pitching Z-6011 to Apple.

So if you do have an iPhone 4 and are having problems with yellow spots on the screen, give it a few days and see if it goes away.


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By Shadowself on 6/24/2010 12:16:46 PM , Rating: 2
How is this in any way related to Apple's spat with HTC? Apple claims HTC is violating its patents. (HTC claims the same of Apple.) Apple has no beef with the z-6011 manufacturer if Apple is shipping the iPhones before the stuff is 100% cured. Apple would get laughed out of court on this and Apple's lawyers know it.

Also how is Apple or Foxcomm really screwing up on this? IF (truly, *IF*) this report is true, it could easily be that those phones that shipped in the last couple of days were very recently manufactured. Apple (and Foxconn) have certainly been manufacturing the iPhone 4 for at least a month now. It is very possible that the ones most recently shipped were the ones in the front of the warehouse (sort of a last in, first out scenario). The other million or so that have been stockpiled could be fine (again, IF this report is true).

I don't see how this will damage Apple's reputation in any way. Even with these early units it is only showing up on a small fraction of the units... and it seems to go away in a day or two. AND even when it is there for that day or so, it does not negatively impact the functionality of the phone.

Now, the antenna issue with regard to hand placement... that's a different story. If the couple reports I've read are true -- that if you hold the phone "just so" it severely limits transmissions and reception -- then THAT will absolutely negatively impact Apple's reputation and the long term sales of this iPhone!

"A politician stumbles over himself... Then they pick it out. They edit it. He runs the clip, and then he makes a funny face, and the whole audience has a Pavlovian response." -- Joe Scarborough on John Stewart over Jim Cramer

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