Whether you think Apple CEO Steve Jobs hit it over the back fence or tipped it foul at his Friday press conference addressing the iPhone 4's antenna problems; one thing is certain. Nothing was settled once and for all.
Here's a round-up of some of the more interesting reactions and insights over the weekend, while hopefully you were sunning yourself on a beach or at least manning a grill with the ones you love the most.
Regarding Apple's "tests" claiming other smartphones have the same antenna problem:
"Nokia has invested thousands of man hours in studying human behavior, including how people hold their phones for calls, music playing, web browsing and so on. As you would expect from a company focused on connecting people, we prioritize antenna performance over physical design if they are ever in conflict."
Even more strongly worded, this is from Research In Motion (parent company of Blackberry), also specifically accused of the same problem by Jobs at the press conference:
"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."
My footnote on Apple's "tests"; they were hardly done by an impartial lab now were they?
Regarding the "free bumper" fix
FYI... The new iPhone 4 when sheathed in a bumper case doesn't fit in its charging dock.
The "free" bumper is good only through September 30th. Apple didn't say a peep about actually fixing the design flaw. So what happens to customers who purchse the iPhone 4 after September? Caveat Emptor?
Regarding Consumer Reports' don't buy it recommendation that prompted this whole thing anyway:
The folks at Consumer Reports watched the press conference too and...
"As things currently stand, the iPhone 4 is still not one of our Recommended models."
Regarding that *&^%^& new antenna design on the iPhone 4:
For more than you'll ever want to know about RF engineering and cell phones that however offers some truly illuminating perspective on this whole thing:
Check out the blog of RF engineering consultant, Spencer Webb, who goes into a lengthy (but worthwhile) explanation of antenna placement in phones (in short, due to safety regulations they have to go at the bottom to avoid beaming directly into your head and unfortunately that is exactly where we tend to grip the phone). That's just one among many insights. Read it. It's food for thought.
Regarding Steve Jobs' being Steve Jobs at the press conference:
I told you what I think back on Friday. Some of you left comments with a general consensus that I was too hard on the lad. Oh really? I respect your opinions. But maybe I'm not so crazy, after all. At least I'm not alone.
One of Apple's most highly respected alums, Jean-Louis Gassee (founded Apple France) characterized Jobs' performance on Friday as "whining" and "lame". Read his blow by blow posting laying out examples of how Jobs has a history of blaming the press and blowing off his customers.