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  • Samsung and HTC Respond to Apple's Antenna Allegations



    Last Friday, both Nokia and Research in Motion fired back at Apple in the immediate hours following Steve Jobs' press conference to mitigate the severity of the Death Grip, announce a free case program, and generalize the iPhone 4's antenna issues to the smartphone industry as a whole. As expected, the mobile phone makers that Apple called out did not respond favorably to the sweeping allegations made to the entire world.

    And today, both HTC and Samsung have responded to claims that their products have similar if not worse antenna and reception problems. The Wall Street Journal is where HTC turned to get their message across to everyone: poor reception and dropped calls due to improperly holding a phone aren't as widespread and universal as Apple made them appear to be. Hui-Meng Cheng, the company's CFO, said that "the reception problems are certainly not common among smartphones." Adding that Apple should correct its design flaws and leave competitors out of the argument, Cheng concluded that Apple "apparently didn't give operators enough time to test the phone."

    It should be noted, however, that Daring Fireball responded to HTC's statement Monday by reference a portion of HTC's instruction manual for the Droid Eris which clearly states (and punctuates with a photo) that the device shouldn't be touched or held over the part of the device where the antenna is housed. From the manual: "Avoiding contact with the antenna area when the phone is IN USE optimizes the antenna performance and the battery life."



    Samsung, meanwhile, also has a stake in this fight as Apple called out the Omnia II and pointed to analogous reception bugs. Samsung, however, wanted to make it clear in a statement today that the company simply "hasn't received significant customer feedback on any signal reduction issue for the Omnia II." The terse response from Samsung followed Apple's hands-on demonstration of the similarly "flawed" Omnia II last week.

    Apple, which has sold in excess of three million iPhone 4s since last month, will distribute free cases to every iPhone 4 customer through Sept. 30 - a move that Apple is obviously hoping will put the "Death Grip" issue to rest once and for all.

    Wall Street Journal
    Daring Fireball
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Samsung and HTC Respond to Apple's Antenna Allegations started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 120 Comments
    1. alexevo's Avatar
      alexevo -
      Ok first everyone needs to stop getting all upset and calling for a recall. Here is why: Jobs said within 30 days you can return it. There. no need for a recall. you have the option to bring it back if you don't want it. no recall necessary, none.

      Second, how many times have you been in an area and the phone displayed 5 bars but you're using the internet and you think "wow this is running awfully slow for 5 bars" which just lends credence to the statement that Jobs made that the bars were inaccurate.

      Third, even at 1 bar which is I believe -113db the phone will still hold a call and send a text. If you don't believe me then try it as I was able to replicate the problem on an iP4 in the Apple store and still able to hold a call at 1 bar.

      You recall products for safety problems, you issue fixes for products whos problems are not concerns for safety.

      I guarantee you no matter how much people complain about this, Apple will still keep selling iP4s anyway so claim your free case, fix your reception problem with it, and get over it.
    1. mortopher's Avatar
      mortopher -
      Quote Originally Posted by Apple. View Post
      "there is no design flaw"

      In the press conference Steve said they knew about this issue.

      It's just more noticeable because there is a split in the antenna that shows where "the magic spot" is.

      If the antenna didn't have this split in the lower corners you wouldn't know where it is on the left spot hence why he said x marks the spot.

      Another argument against your points that I keep bringing up and no one seems to answer.

      What if the iPhone 4 came with the bumpers permanently on from the factory. You wouldn't be complaining about it then.

      The solutions are there.

      ALL phones do it. It is not a design flaw. Live with it or move to another phone that will have the same type of problem.

      Apple did the right and smart thing by proving their data with evidence.

      Get a case and use your phone or return it and get your money back.

      @the person who is saying he returned his i4 but is trying to justify his arguments about apps he purchased and why he doesn't receive a refund.

      That's like saying you buy a windows based computer. Buy different applications for it. Turns out you don't like the computer so you return it. Now you paid for all these applications that are useless. And complaining that u should get a refund for these apps as well.

      BUYING these applications you should know they only work with that platform. It is not apples responsibility for you to know that. It's pretty much a given.
      Why is it so difficult to understand that there are two issues at play here? The first issue is that all cell phones suffer from attenuation when held in certain ways. The second is that the external antenna allows a user to "bridge the gap" and drastically decrease the signal strength regardless of how the phone is held when doing so.
    1. Moosestache's Avatar
      Moosestache -
      Quote Originally Posted by alexevo View Post
      Ok first everyone needs to stop getting all upset and calling for a recall. Here is why: Jobs said within 30 days you can return it. There. no need for a recall. you have the option to bring it back if you don't want it. no recall necessary, none.

      Second, how many times have you been in an area and the phone displayed 5 bars but you're using the internet and you think "wow this is running awfully slow for 5 bars" which just lends credence to the statement that Jobs made that the bars were inaccurate.

      Third, even at 1 bar which is I believe -113db the phone will still hold a call and send a text. If you don't believe me then try it as I was able to replicate the problem on an iP4 in the Apple store and still able to hold a call at 1 bar.

      You recall products for safety problems, you issue fixes for products whos problems are not concerns for safety.

      I guarantee you no matter how much people complain about this, Apple will still keep selling iP4s anyway so claim your free case, fix your reception problem with it, and get over it.
      The government forces companies to recall products when they are a safety hazard.

      Companies that are concerned with their customers good will, and potential law suits recall products when they are defective.

      Now it may well be that the problems with the iphone 4 are not fixable, if that is the case then a recall does nothing. Which is what I believe is the case. Therefore apple is doing what it can to minimize both its public image issues as well as its potential liabilities. Those liabilities will end up determining the amount of payouts they are eventually forced to agree to either to make these law suits go away, or to payout when they lose them.
    1. dsg's Avatar
      dsg -
      Appl£ should drastically reduce the price or just stop selling defective technology, regardless of the free bumper/3rd party case
    1. domenicp's Avatar
      domenicp -
      Samsung's response is very interesting. They did not really retaliate with harsh words. Simply that they have had no customer complaints. I guess they are not disputing the fact that this issue exists. This may be related to the fact that Apple used their chips in previous versions of the phone, and I suspect Samsung still wants Apple's business.

      Can't wait for the iphone4 to come to Canada. Even with the death grip issue. I've never had good luck with cell phone reception anyway.
    1. alexevo's Avatar
      alexevo -
      It really is a non-issue if you just put a case on it. If you care about your property then you put a case on it to protect it.

      If you bought then you shoulda put a case on it(sung to the lyrics of Beyonce's if you want it then you shoulda put a ring on it).

      Samsung's response really kicked Apple hard in the balls. If you read into it you see "well nobody has complained about our product so when or if they do then we'll respond but until then there don't seem to be any problems because people aren't complaining" Apple = OWNED! by that one
    1. Iman07's Avatar
      Iman07 -
      Quote Originally Posted by alexevo View Post
      It really is a non-issue if you just put a case on it. If you care about your property then you put a case on it to protect it.

      If you bought then you shoulda put a case on it(sung to the lyrics of Beyonce's if you want it then you shoulda put a ring on it).

      Samsung's response really kicked Apple hard in the balls. If you read into it you see "well nobody has complained about our product so when or if they do then we'll respond but until then there don't seem to be any problems because people aren't complaining" Apple = OWNED! by that one
      You sir are an idiot. So if you don't put a case on your phone then that means you don't take care of it? I don't have a case on my phone and I have had it for 7 months without a single scratch.
    1. Apple.'s Avatar
      Apple. -
      Quote Originally Posted by Moosestache View Post
      Listen fanboy,

      #1 the place where the death grip occurs is exactly where 99% of right handed people put their hand, that is one of the biggest problems.

      #2 The signal loss is much greater than with any other cell phone out there, including past generations of iphones.

      #3 Apple did not advertise to the people who bought the iphone that there would be a very good chance they would need to use a case or they would have a serious problem with dropping calls. In fact they advertised that the reception was better than any previous iphone.

      #4 In all likely hood the lawsuits floating around right now will eventually be joined together and apple will end up settling for a large amount of money. One of the reasons they will have to pay out is because people bought applications and accessories that they can't return even if they can return their iphone. Any judge will look at that and agree that apple is to some extent liable for those issues, and costs. That is why we have courts, and why companies are held accountable for both their advertising as well as how their products function.

      If however, the Iphone 4 had come with bumpers attached, or with bumpers included, and a warning stating that if used without a case or bumper you will lose signal, then apple would have had no or very little liability. Hiding the issue from buyers, then admitting they knew about it only serves to hurt them in court.
      1. Apple is not responsible for apps you purchase. That is just dumb. Think of the concept. You go buy a PS3 and purchase games with it. You return the PS3 because there is a problem but you cant return the games because its past the 7 day return policy. YOU are SOL!

      2. There wont be a recall and Apple will not have to settle. IT DOES NOT HARM YOU IN ANY WAY. Therefore a recall will not be forced upon them by the government. Apple also gave you options, give you a case or you return the phone. SIMPLE AS THAT. Now QUIT Complaining.

      QUIT COMPLAINING USE A CASE OR RETURN YOUR PHONE.

      The options are there. Your Complaining will not change anything.
    1. ErikiPhone's Avatar
      ErikiPhone -
      Everyone might have seen this, but I just bumped into and couldn't but share! Apple posts video showing antenna issue on Nokia N97 mini
      I especially liked "Yes, Apple, you win -- your phone is just as bad as everyone else's?"
    1. alexevo's Avatar
      alexevo -
      Quote Originally Posted by Apple. View Post
      2. There wont be a recall and Apple will not have to settle. IT DOES NOT HARM YOU IN ANY WAY. Therefore a recall will not be forced upon them by the government. Apple also gave you options, give you a case or you return the phone. SIMPLE AS THAT. Now QUIT Complaining.
      +1. I agree 100%.

      Quote Originally Posted by Iman07 View Post
      You sir are an idiot. So if you don't put a case on your phone then that means you don't take care of it? I don't have a case on my phone and I have had it for 7 months without a single scratch.
      No need to talk crap because I can cite several examples of ways people pay extra to protect their posessions. I bet you bought car insurance on your bmw right? Because although you can't prevent an accident you want to protect your investment if something happens to it. A case is like insurance for the phone except it provides immediate protection that insurance wouldn't cover(scratches). Also I don't believe for 1 second that you have a completely naked iPhone and you don't have any scratches on it. They may be fine scratches, but they're still scratches.

      You don't need to lie to kick it broseph.
    1. Xenthis's Avatar
      Xenthis -
      Quote Originally Posted by tremerone View Post
      Oh man! This just keeps getting better!
      I agree!
    1. dsg's Avatar
      dsg -
      wrong thread, duh
    1. mortopher's Avatar
      mortopher -
      Quote Originally Posted by alexevo View Post
      +1. I agree 100%.



      No need to talk crap because I can cite several examples of ways people pay extra to protect their posessions. I bet you bought car insurance on your bmw right? Because although you can't prevent an accident you want to protect your investment if something happens to it. A case is like insurance for the phone except it provides immediate protection that insurance wouldn't cover(scratches). Also I don't believe for 1 second that you have a completely naked iPhone and you don't have any scratches on it. They may be fine scratches, but they're still scratches.

      You don't need to lie to kick it broseph.
      Yeah, insurance is required by law in most states. Weak comparison.
    1. alexevo's Avatar
      alexevo -
      Quote Originally Posted by paganizonda83 View Post
      Yeah, insurance is required by law in most states. Weak comparison.
      I really hate having to spell **** out for people. COMPREHENSIVE is not required. Comprehensive is what kicks in if it is less than 100% the other party's fault and you get a scratch on your car that you want fixed. LIABILITY only will not fix your car if something happens that is less than 100% the other party's fault. Anyway enough insurance talk, you should understand the content by now.
    1. mortopher's Avatar
      mortopher -
      So you're saying a case is like insurance for your phone?

      Then why is there insurance for your phone?
    1. dsg's Avatar
      dsg -
      Quote Originally Posted by alexevo View Post
      I really hate having to spell **** out for people. COMPREHENSIVE is not required. Comprehensive is what kicks in if it is less than 100% the other party's fault and you get a scratch on your car that you want fixed. LIABILITY only will not fix your car if something happens that is less than 100% the other party's fault. Anyway enough insurance talk, you should understand the content by now.
      it's still a bad comparison, I don't recall a mobile phone having wheels and being able to get in it to go somewhere

      after seeing saurik's interview the bumper doesn't look that bad, but still your paying a lot of money for something that doesn't work right and ok maybe other smart phones have the issue but after seeing the slander videos from Appl£ it takes longer to happen

      with Appl£ being a progressive company that supposedly is a pioneer in new ways of doing things, how did they get this wrong (I mean totally get it wrong by letting the antenna come into contact with humans err bumper=more money for us), when they knew the problem existed with the antenna on smart phones and possibly other phones
    1. alexevo's Avatar
      alexevo -
      Insurance on your phone doesn't cover scratches only usability(lost, stolen, damaged beyond repair or damaged and resulting in reduced functionality i.e. a cracked screen not a scratch on the back cover or bezel). The comparison is valid and stands as it shows there are ways of protecting what we own either through monetary and/or physical means and we are wise to invest in one or the other or both if possible.

      Back to the topic at hand. The consensus is that Apple was trying to be a pioneer trying out new technology and making the iPhone even more advanced and in doing so they managed to botch it. Its likely their testing guidelines are very stringent but failed to encounter this scenario in their testing. That or perhaps their testers never had the death grip on the phone because they were instructed to hold the phone a certain way to prevent changes in test results based on grip. Then again, grip is probably the singular most important item to consider when testing a phone for reception, especially one that has an external antenna.

      Jobs is right though, the way people hold their phones isn't really accurate to the death grip because after testing this in the apple store I found that you really have to cover up the whole thing and squeeze hard to induce significant attenuation.

      Maybe the first person or persons to discover this were those who were driving while talking on the phone and attempted to cover the phone so law enforcement wouldn't see? Who really knows and who cares since everyone now knows what causes it they can either return their phone, buy a case, change their grip, or put something over the antenna if they so choose.
    1. dsg's Avatar
      dsg -
      by putting an antenna in a place where it would knowingly cause issues, yeah great pioneering, why do you think all other manufactures have the antenna actually inside the phone, so that you can't touch it and cause attenuation

      in the apple store
      there probably in a good coverage area,

      Who really knows and who cares since everyone now knows what causes it they can either return their phone, buy a case, change their grip, or put something over the antenna if they so choose.
      I think the policy Appl£ has choosen for the iPhone 4 issue is at best is shite for a product that is supposed to be a flagship
    1. alexevo's Avatar
      alexevo -
      Kind of makes us wonder though. If putting the antenna outside was done to increase reception as opposed to putting it inside the housing. Then why would putting a case over the phone somehow prevent attenuation when you are enclosing the antenna again?

      Hopefully Apple finds a fix for this sooner than later. It would be sh*tty to have a fix finally come out and only 6 months or less until the next-gen iPhone arrival.
    1. unison999's Avatar
      unison999 -
      Quote Originally Posted by Apple. View Post
      @the person who is saying he returned his i4 but is trying to justify his arguments about apps he purchased and why he doesn't receive a refund.

      That's like saying you buy a windows based computer. Buy different applications for it. Turns out you don't like the computer so you return it. Now you paid for all these applications that are useless. And complaining that u should get a refund for these apps as well.
      Totally different.
      I blame Apple because Apple knew about the problem before the pre-sale, Apple denied the problem right off the bat. Had they admit this problem before the sale, I would not have bought iPhone 4 until a permanent solution have been made. Then all this other problems I have with Apple would not even be there, everything STARTED with Apple trying to move the blame onto something else is just irresponsible company.
      Apple took away that CHOICE by hiding the problem when they sold the product, even to this day they try to cloud the antennagate problem (touching 1 spot) with blocking the signals (gorilla grip). Whatever the reasons Apple had by selling faulty product one thing that can not be denied, consumers were lied to. I returned the phone not because Apple allowed it, there is a law giving 30 day money back for mail order. If it means I have to pay the restocking fee, fine with me because that is how bad this antennagate bothers me. But I knew Apple would be forced to take it back without the restocking fee, consumer outrage would hurt Apple even more.
      Uhhh BTW I can buy windows based computer, it has problem I can not buy another windows based computer without the flaw and reinstall program. IT IS A DESIGN FLAW!! It could totally be avoided by putting thin coating like Apple does on the screens, but they didn't. A brain fart?