HTC Acting President Wishes iPhones Were Less Cool

I brought my daughter back to college — she’s down in Portland at Reed — and I talked to a few of the kids on her floor. And none of them has an iPhone because they told me: ‘My dad has an iPhone.’ There’s an interesting thing that’s going on in the market. The iPhone becomes a little less cool than it was.

Did I say “wishes”? My mistake. Here we have a scientific study of a large population by an unbiased source that proves it.

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Antennagate: The Finale?

Marketing can be a chess game. Steve’s made his move, now his competitors get to make theirs. “Them’s fighting words” for these guys, and they’ve already had some nasty things to say about Apple drawing them into its “self-made debacle.” Careful with this one, boys. You may protesteth too much. More and more stories are beginning to appear confirming that this really is an industry-wide problem, and other phones do suffer from a similar death grip.

Good article that sums it up well. I chose the above quote because the statements from RIM, Nokia, HTC, etc. have all been non-denial denials. Like the author, I agree this should backfire on them, but believe it won’t because their phones just aren’t that interesting.

Why would a tech site spend their time thoroughly testing other companies’ “death grips” and then publish the results when no one will click the link anyway? Apple gets page-hits, others do not. This stopped being about “news,” or “concern” for the consumer, and crossed over into the realm of SEO and page hits long ago.

RIM Publishes Non-Denial Denial.

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.

Above is the full statement from RIM Co-CEOs Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie.

Sounds harsh, yet nowhere in that torrent of words do they deny the Blackberry Bold has a death grip issue. Good thing, too, because it most certainly has one.

I have an iPhone 4 and can reproduce the death grip; once I knew how to hold it, it was easy. But I also own a BlackBerry Bold 9700. Guess what? Now that I know how to hold it, I can reproduce the issue with it, too. In fact, my tweet about it came many hours before the Co-CEOs published their non-denial denial. 

But what about the Bold owners who swear they can’t reproduce it? I guess we pay as much attention to them as the iPhone 4 owners who say they can’t reproduce it, either. Fair’s fair, right? I’d like to point out that I’ve never dropped a call on my iPhone 4 or Bold, both sans cases, so the real world counts for something.

It’s a shame that even with two CEOs RIM weren’t smart enough to let this go, choosing instead to get all puffed up while not even denying what they presumably got puffed up about in the first place.

Meanwhile, the reason RIM “has avoided designs like the one Apple used in the iPhone 4” is because Blackberrys are relics from a half-decade ago. The most “innovative” thing RIM’s tried to do in five years is add a touch-screen to a track-ball based OS, and they failed miserably. Both times. This is why they’ve been giving their phones away—buy one, get one free—for nearly a year. 

The good news for RIM is that people are so disinterested in their out-of-touch (pun intended) relic that the Bold won’t get near the attention Apple’s innovative iPhone has. This is one time where RIM’s inferior product will actually help them. 

Consumer Reports iPhone 4 Study Flawed

Bottom line. From what I can see in the reports, Consumer Reports replicated the same uncontrolled, unscientific experiments that many of the blogging sites have done.

For the record, I never posted, tweeted, or otherwise mentioned CR’s beautiful iPhone 4 recommendation from a week ago. The reason is simple: I wouldn’t give you two cents for CR’s “experts” and analysis, good or bad. Sorry, but I’ve seen their methods and conclusions questioned too many times over the years.

I’m only posting about CR today because the same Apple bashers who paid no attention to them earlier are now ready to anoint them the wisest of all organizations. No. It’s still the same dubious, blow-with-the-popular-breeze publication it’s always been.

Apple’s New iPhone 4 Ads: A FaceTime Future?

Nevertheless, the ads are emotional proofs of concept for a future that will eventually be real for many millions, whether that future is brought about by the iPhone 4 or not.

You can see all four new ads on Apple’s site. I think they’re all well done, with my personal favorite being “Haircut”.

But the ads mean less to me than Mashable’s quote above. They seem to have forgotten Apple made FaceTime an open standard.

Unless Android handset makers are idiots, they should be fighting to be first to market with FaceTime on an Android phone. (Oh, and Microsoft should push for this in the first WP7 phone, too.) It’s not about Apple, per se, but rather the technology they’ve made available to everyone.

If hardware makers don’t blow it, this “concept for a future that will eventually be real for many millions” will be brought about through Apple’s work, not through their phone. For FaceTime, think of iPhone 4 as Apple’s model to show other hardware makers how it’s done.

A Picture’s Worth A Thousand Bars [u]

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I don’t claim this answers everything, but it does very clearly explain why some people “see” no signal loss at all while others “see” a huge drop.

[UPDATE:] What I find fascinating isn’t so much the obvious emphasis on a supposed good signal, but rather the total deemphasis of a medium signal. I mean, look at that sliver for three bars. Apple goes from “you’re fine” (4-5 bars) to “you’re not so fine” (1-2 bars) almost immediatley. It’s as if they never want you to think that you might be fine.

A Reasonable Look at the Apple and AT&T iPhone4 Lawsuit.

Not surprising I suppose, the lawsuit makes no mention of the perhaps questionable judgements of the plaintiffs who bought the product(s) sight unseen.

The star witness as it turns out seem to be some unqualified blogging site diatribes as technical references.

Frankly as a former RF Engineer myself, I can tell you that the performance issues claimed are inconsistent. The demonstration tests ill-informed. And there are as many wireless network variables as there may be device variables.

The frenzy over this issue is ridiculous. How many class action suits is this for Apple this decade? 50? 100? And it’s not just Apple. 

The problem with these nonsense suits—I call this one nonsense based on their cited authorities and how they’re playing it in the media—is that sooner or later they mask legitimate ones.

One is hard pressed to believe this firm is doing anything other than chasing a buck when three of the four links used in support of their initial statement about the “iPhone 4 investigation” are from Gizmodo. Bad enough to use blogs with questionable technical expertise in the first place, but citing one with a recent and obvious axe to grind against Apple seems the height of cluelessness. Meanwhile, the only non-Gizmodo link is to a rumors site. Lovely. 

Oh well, I’ve seen stranger suits prevail (a spilled cup of coffee comes to mind). I guess that’s why firms like Ambulance & Chaser, LLC. continue to try their luck.

Deat AT&T: I’m one of your happy customers, no sense in trying to piss me off

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I just received the above email from AT&T regarding my iPhone 4.

This is odd. You see, my order was taken at an AT&T Store the first day pre-orders were allowed. I received confirmation the next day, and a tracking number a couple of days after that. The device was delivered right on schedule June 24th, and getting it activated (a “swap” with another phone on our family plan) was easy as well.

In short, AT&T rocked for me through the whole process. Sending me an email now saying I’m not going to receive the phone I’ve already had for six days is not going to bring me down. Confuse me, yes, but bring me down, no.