Print 79 comment(s) - last by sweetspot.. on Jul 21 at 1:32 PM

Note the complete lack of insulation on the stainless steel antenna/frame. An engineer warned top executives at Apple a year ago, that the design was doomed to make the phone a lemon.  (Source: iFixIt)

IOS 4.0.1 is now available; it now "correctly" displays signal bars on supported iPhones
Also, U.S. Senator voices outrage about Apple's handling of the iPhone antenna problems

Life is tough as an engineer.  Last year Ruben Caballero, a senior engineer and antenna expert at Apple, reportedly warned the company's top management, including CEO Steven P. Jobs, that the current production plan was badly flawed.  Lacking any insulation, he recognized from experience that the antenna would likely be in for some serious issues.

Bloomberg received the information from a source close to Caballero.  Caballero, who still works at Apple has declined comment.  Apple also declined comment.

It appears that Apple blatantly disregarded the call for insulating its antenna over fear that it would impact the phone's size or weight.  The new antenna design, which wraps around the phone's frame was designed to minimize weight and size.

Apple also reportedly received a warning from a carrier partner sources say (likely AT&T) about problems they were having during early testing.  Again Apple appears to have blatantly disregarded yet another warning placed in front of it.

Despite selling a record 1.7 million iPhones at launch, Apple has since been overrun with angry customers complaining their new Apple phones are actually lemons.  Apple has remained unsympathetic, for the most part, which many say has damaged its brand image.  The company did announce that it will hold a special press conference on Friday to address the issues.  Some are predicting that Apple may launch a recall, which could cost the company $1B USD or more.

In related news U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer (D- NY) wrote an open letter to Apple CEO Jobs blasting his company's handling of the signal issues.  The topic is a particular sore spot in New York; New York City has, according to Apple employees suffered from 30 percent iPhone dropped call rates.

In the letter Sen. Schumer calls Apple's upcoming cosmetic patch to how many bars are drawn to be "insufficient".  He also suggests that Apple's demand that customers buy cases to fix the issue is inappropriate.  He writes, "The burden for consumers caused by this glitch, combined with the confusion over its cause and how it will be fixed, has the potential to undermine the many benefits of this innovative device.  To address this concern, I ask that Apple provide iPhone 4 customers with a clearly written explanation of the cause of the reception problem and make a public commitment to remedy it free-of-charge."

In his letter he cites the Consumer Reports' decision to drop its endorsement of the iPhone.  Clearly a jilted Apple fan, Sen. Schumer concludes, "I look forward to Apple's swift action on this matter, and once again laud Apple for its innovative efforts and service to millions of Americans."

Updated 7/15/2010 @ 2:21 pm

Apple has just rolled out iOS 4.0.1 which is supposed to correct the way signals bars are displayed on the iPhone 3G, iPhone 3GS, and iPhone 4.

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Not right.
By ghost101 on 7/15/2010 11:20:20 AM , Rating: 5
Whilst I certainly am loving the bashing Apple have been getting, I do not think a Senator should be writing an open letter clearly using his position to get publicity of the letter. Politicians shouldn't be endorsing or slamming goods produced by private companies unless they are doing something against the public interest.

This is a matter between Apple and its customers. As possibly a customer the Senator has the right to write a letter, but by making it public, he is exerting undue influence where he shouldn't.

RE: Not right.
By ghost101 on 7/15/2010 11:23:11 AM , Rating: 2
Maybe "slamming" was the wrong word. Being critical may be the better phrase to use.

RE: Not right.
By Reclaimer77 on 7/15/2010 11:32:50 AM , Rating: 5
The topic is a particular sore spot in New York; New York City has, according to Apple employees suffered from 30 percent iPhone dropped call rates.

I would agree with you, except for this. While it's true our Senators, especially Democrats, should be worrying about more important things - his constituents are absolutely being negatively impacted from this defective product. So in a sense, he's at least doing his "job" so to speak on this one.

And it's just a letter. I don't mind anyone exercising their First Amendment rights, even Congressmen. It's when they start exercising them via legislation that tightens my jaws. Rather have him writing letters than laws.

RE: Not right.
By transamdude95 on 7/15/2010 12:08:48 PM , Rating: 1
It's probably an election year for him.

RE: Not right.
By Devil07 on 7/15/2010 12:54:30 PM , Rating: 5
It's Charles Schumer, what did you expect out of such a political turd of a media whore.

RE: Not right.
By Helbore on 7/16/2010 5:53:48 AM , Rating: 2
Politicians shouldn't be endorsing or slamming goods produced by private companies unless they are doing something against the public interest.

Surely selling goods not fit for purpose is against the public interest. Ok, it might not be top on the agenda of items that need to be sorted, but aren't politicians meant to be the big guns of the people? ie. If a corporation thinks it can walk all over the little man, then the little man can complain to his representative in government, who has the clout (supposedly) to kick the corporation down a notch or two. It is possible people have written to their senator and asked him to do something because Apple have been so pig-headedly stubborn.

I admit I'm probably being naively optomistic in thinking a politician isn't doing this for publicity, but even if he has some selfish motives - and as long as it isn't getting in the way of him dealing with major issues - he is actually serving his people by openly standing up to corporate bullying.

"This is about the Internet.  Everything on the Internet is encrypted. This is not a BlackBerry-only issue. If they can't deal with the Internet, they should shut it off." -- RIM co-CEO Michael Lazaridis

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