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  • Consumer Reports 'Lab Tests' Find Death Grip in Verizon iPhone


    Our friends at Consumer Reports are at it again. On Friday, the venerable consumer advocate publication took aim at the Verizon iPhone. As with its "lab tests" that similarly prompted the magazine to withdraw its recommendation of the iPhone 4 at the height of Antennagate, the publication is once again slamming the popular Apple smartphone. This time, the Verizon iPhone is the target.

    The Verizon iPhone 4 has a problem that could cause the phone to drop calls, or be unable to place calls, in weak signal conditions, Consumer Reports engineers have found in lab tests.
    Essentially hearkening back to claims that the iPhone 4 suffers from the "death grip" phenomenon, Consumer Reports wants readers to know that the CDMA Verizon iPhone has the same problem. "When we placed the Verizon iPhone 4 into the Apple iPhone 4 Bumper," the report noted, "the problem was essentially eliminated, as it was in our original tests of the AT&T iPhone, when it was placed into a Bumper."

    Ultimately, however, it seems that Consumer Reports has achieved little other than to draw criticism toward its own credibility. As millions of satisfied AT&T and Verizon customers can arrest, the iPhone 4 is not a fatally flawed device undeserving of recommendation. While yours truly won't go as far as to question the integrity of the report and their underlying "tests," some Apple fans - notwithstanding their obvious bias - believe editors at Consumer Reports enjoyed the global attention their publication received last year in the wake of Antennagate. And while Consumer Reports may truly believe that their non-recommendation of the iPhone 4 is warranted, they all but certainly also love the attention they receive when the "Death Grip" is discussed in their publications.

    Consumer Reports
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Consumer Reports 'Lab Tests' Find Death Grip in Verizon iPhone started by Michael Essany View original post
    Comments 77 Comments
    1. mr117's Avatar
      mr117 -
      Please! Two i4s, no problems with "shorting out." Someone made a comment about using a copper wire? Gee, I just make phone calls without stretching a piece of copper wire across the bottom of my phone. I have had no issues with or without a bumper or case. A friend has a Blackberry, he showed me how, if he holds the phone in a certain way, the signal level goes down. So he doesn't hold it that way. "Doctor, doctor, it hurts when I do this." The doctor says, "Then don't do that."

      CU lost my respect a long time ago, based on review of other, non-Apple products. I am not a fanboy, far from it. I can give you a list of things I don't like about Apple. But this? No. How many millions of phones (AT&T and now Verizon) have been sold? I don't see lines of people waiting at the Apple Store to return them. So enough of this, already.
    1. Sticky111's Avatar
      Sticky111 -
      Quote Originally Posted by yair_213 View Post
      Who cares? I got iPhone 4 n im happy. Stop talking crap and go vibrate your phone
      vibrate your iphone,,,,,,,,? WEIRDO
    1. Jahooba's Avatar
      Jahooba -
      I like the conspiracy theory part, where CR was doing it just for attention. Ha!

      Look, a phone has one (1) main function: to make phone calls. If there's a place you can touch on the outside of your phone that will drop your call then that's just bad design.

      CP just says:

      Bumper ON: Works great - iPhone 4 recommended!
      Bumper OFF: Cannot Recommend this phone.

      That seems reasonable to me, considering there's a major design flaw regarding the phone's number-one (#1) most important function.
    1. NiteStar's Avatar
      NiteStar -
      I've been using a bumper because of the "death grip". However, the bumper has separated at the bottom and now I have been without a bumper for 1 month. I had forgot what it was like to actually have to readjust my pinky finger while on call because I'm dropping calls or having people say "your breaking up". lol. With my bumper, all was good. I just hate having to spend $30 for one with a new iPhone hopefully coming out in 4 months. And don't even get me started on the "proximity issue".

      Don't get me wrong, I LOVE THIS PHONE. But like with everything, nothing is perfect.
    1. norfskate's Avatar
      norfskate -
      I'd much rather be a Apple fanboy than a google sheep
    1. BMNB1tches's Avatar
      BMNB1tches -
      Death grip? must be a death knight
    1. piffsta1's Avatar
      piffsta1 -
      Quote Originally Posted by yair_213 View Post
      Who cares? I got iPhone 4 n im happy. Stop talking crap and go vibrate your phone
      Hahaha. I like this guy ^
    1. nicrfe's Avatar
      nicrfe -
      Quote Originally Posted by mr117 View Post
      Please! Two i4s, no problems with "shorting out." Someone made a comment about using a copper wire? Gee, I just make phone calls without stretching a piece of copper wire across the bottom of my phone. I have had no issues with or without a bumper or case. A friend has a Blackberry, he showed me how, if he holds the phone in a certain way, the signal level goes down. So he doesn't hold it that way. "Doctor, doctor, it hurts when I do this." The doctor says, "Then don't do that."

      CU lost my respect a long time ago, based on review of other, non-Apple products. I am not a fanboy, far from it. I can give you a list of things I don't like about Apple. But this? No. How many millions of phones (AT&T and now Verizon) have been sold? I don't see lines of people waiting at the Apple Store to return them. So enough of this, already.
      The copper wire is for proof of concept. I use copper or gold to prove to fanboys that the issue is real because it drops from full bars to none in less then a second on every iPhone when you short it out.
      Look I love my iPhone but this is real. Just admit it. Don't be mad at CU for being honest and fair. It makes you look dishonest and unfair.
    1. mr117's Avatar
      mr117 -
      Sure- and if I run a copper wire from my iPhone to the coil on my car, the phone blows up. I hold my phone with my hand. I don't need a "proof of concept" with an artificial means- unless you make calls using the wire, it makes no sense to say that holding a wire shorts the phone. . Now, I'm left-handed, so I hold my phone in my right hand. Maybe that's why I personally have no issues. But the other 12 million people who are keeping their phones? Only about 8% can be lefties.
    1. rocky5's Avatar
      rocky5 -
      I get this problem with Vodafone here in the UK, I do not have the proxy sensor problem though. (touch wood)
    1. Rob2G's Avatar
      Rob2G -
      Quote Originally Posted by nicrfe View Post
      The issue with the iPhone is way different then with any other phone. I show people every time this comes up. Short the 2 antennas on the sides of the phone with the part along the bottom using your hand or copper wire. Every time on every iPhone 4 if I get good contact with the copper the signal is lost. Go to google and find one other phone that is like that. But like you say don't just take anyones word for it. Go try it yourself.
      Mine doesn't loose signal, it's a small amount of phones that are effected. Sorry you have one.

      Quote Originally Posted by nicrfe View Post
      The copper wire is for proof of concept. I use copper or gold to prove to fanboys that the issue is real because it drops from full bars to none in less then a second on every iPhone when you short it out.
      Look I love my iPhone but this is real. Just admit it. Don't be mad at CU for being honest and fair. It makes you look dishonest and unfair.
      Here is another issue your passing over, take your copper wire and touch the 2 prongs on your charger together and plug it in to the wall. It affects everything with a plug I can't believe they haven't fixed the issue.


      "Moron"- Dr. Greg House
    1. Hyperextension's Avatar
      Hyperextension -
      I am an Apple "fan boy" and will gladly admit to that!! I am also a very shrewd consumer and I do not settle for crap in anything I purchase. Apple makes great products. If I was having constant problems with the iPhone4 dropping calls, I simply would not own one. Have I experienced the signal issues as in the CR reports? Yes I have, but only in the first brief moments of owning the phone. Even then, I never dropped a call in my subsequent tests of the "death grip". I purchased a case before I bought the phone. I like to have my purchases protected. Problem solved.
    1. evoRC's Avatar
      evoRC -
      Dumbasses period! this is the best phone in the world period!
    1. blueblaze4444's Avatar
      blueblaze4444 -
      Quote Originally Posted by nicrfe View Post
      You can't compare signal attenuation as it passes through your hands on other phones to the iPhone antennas literally shorting out when you hold it.
      I agree...but the iPhone 4 has never caused me real problems. It seems that you have to intentionally use the death grip...I've never dropped a call due to the death grip when I wasn't trying


      And anybody who can purchase a $300 phone can certainly pay $2 on a case from Amazon....if not $30 from Apple
    1. bren132409's Avatar
      bren132409 -
      I'm on my second iPhone 4. Both phones have had reception issues when I hold it, and both have had faulty proximity sensors. Really sucks.
    1. aimetti's Avatar
      aimetti -
      ive never dropped a call due to this issue , but by all means carry on your argument.

      the proximity issue is definitely annoying though.
    1. TheDirtyDiddler's Avatar
      TheDirtyDiddler -
      My iphone 4 gets better reception then my first gen, my 3G and my 3GS all got. When you TRY to make something not work right, it's much more likely to happen.
      Not buying the iPhone 4 because of the "deathgrip" is like not buying a pen because it doesn't write upside down. When the hell will you ever be writing upside down? And when the hell will you ever be talking on the phone while gripping it like a grenade?
    1. awesomeSlayer's Avatar
      awesomeSlayer -
      Puke...Puke...Puke on Consumer Reports...
    1. vantheman169's Avatar
      vantheman169 -
      Quote Originally Posted by nicrfe View Post
      Fan boy bs. The iPhone 4 has a problem. Most phones don't have external antennas that you grab while on the phone and thus do not have this problem. Is big problem ? I say no. But let's be honest it is a problem.
      I dont even own an iPhone 4, Do i like my iPhone 3GS? yes. I do admit that there is a problem with this but its a very very small percentage of people that have "any" issues with the iPhone 4's reception at all. Overall i think people are very happy with their iPhone 4's.

      Also if you have followed this story at all (obviously you have not) you will see that other smart phones have this same issue even tho they dont have EXTERNAL antennas like the iPhone 4 but yet when the whole phone is completely covered like they do in all these videos, the bars drop and thus lose signal/drop calls. Thanks for voicing your opinion even tho you have no idea what your talking about.
    1. Nielsenius's Avatar
      Nielsenius -
      Please view my signature. We have been over this.

      As for the proximity sensor, I had trouble with it on 4.0, but it seems to have been fixed in later updates. Is that just me or was it actually fixed (I'm on 4.2.1)?