After watching the live-blog from several websites regarding the iPhone 4 “Antennagate” issue from this Friday, I was just so shocked about what happened that I had to sit and mull my thought for a few days before I could really think about it, and comment on anything properly. I mean, not many people could transform a huge fiasco of what was actually happening with the iPhone 4, into a complete diversion from the initial problem at hand. Instead of admitting the iPhone 4 has a major problem, it was played down as nothing different than every other phone, and even though there was no problem we’ll give you a free case anyways.

What started out as a simple “touch of death” of the phone, turned into a huge “Killer Grip” presentation where Jobs initially started diverting the blame from his phone, by showing still images from other phones and manufacturers having “similar” issues. These stills showed the phones being cupped by someones hands, and pictures of the antenna strength declining. Let’s not remember, that the iPhone can die with just the slight touch of your little pinky finger on the two lines; And cell phone 101 – You cover up enough of your phone, or certain key areas of the phone, you will begin to lose some of its reception. This claim was seriously overrated on Jobs presentation to the point where it was just ludicrous.

To throw in a bit of a bump, Jobs did state that he would give all iPhone 4 owners a free case if they wanted one, and those who had already bought one a refund. Mind you, that did only apply to the Apple official bumpers, and no refunds for anyone who bought a 3rd party case. To add another insult, the free case offer is only open till September 30th where they will “re-evaluate the situation” and decide if free cases are still warranted. Personally, if they are going to do the “We’ll hide the problem and just give you a free case” then it should be shipped with one. This mediocre solution however, still doesn’t fix the underlying issue.

The Q &A session at the end of the press conference was a classic. Steve Jobs returned to his original dick self as was apparent in the 90’s (and almost bankrupted Apple a couple of times) by denying any issue, being smart with reporters and not clarifying anything much more than what he had actually said. He was even fighting back at one reporter who had asked about the software update Apple has been praying will fix their problems (but everyone knows it wont) by denying that the signal issue was even there to begin with. The answer was something like “This” issue you speak of has just been explained in the last hour. So, what turned out to be a big hope for Apple (in terms of fixing the signal bars) has become a nothing now, as I guess they figured out everyone got smart at the real problem – noise interference in the atenna assembly.

The press conference itself was nothing more than smoke and mirrors. What really really made my day though was reading the response from Consumer Reports. We all know the only reason that they hosted this press conference was because of CR’s refusal to recommend the iPhone 4 in any way to its customers, as well as the other public figures and corporations who wanted a response from Apple. Well, Apple just assumed that a free case and denial of the issue was sufficient. CR’s response said that Apple was making “A great start to fixing the problem by offering a free bumber case” and that it still won’t recommend the phone. Brilliant! Some of the big corporations finally standing up to Apple!!

After the conference, of course everyone started writing their own things on what they fought. Its funny watching people write about how Apple has done everything correctly, and that consumers should get over it blah blah blah. I’m sorry, but if you release a product with a major flaw that only 0.55% of people called Apple about (lets remember, called Apple, this isn’t including going to the Apple stores, complaining about it on the web, or the millions of people who just think its a bad reception area) and you try to pretend the problem doesn’t exist, it is not OK in my books.

Jobs also has the manufacturers of the phones listed in his presentation in an uproar too, to the point where HTC officially posted numbers of their complaints versus Apple’s – the iPhone 4 had 35x as many complaints about reception quality versus HTC. thats a LOT of complaints! Some of the other guys are thinking of suing for defamation (which I think that they should!).

Personally, I think Jobs should have done a lot more at the press release. Giving away a free bumper was only the beginning. He should have admitted fully that there was a major issue and not try to deny that it occurs to everyone else. That is just completely petty and selfish. While it was apparent that Jobs was clearly aggravated, and that everyone should just accept it, he should have offered a better long time solution. Maybe not a direct recall, but a chance to replace it for a newer model later at no cost. You have to remember, as much as I would like for Apple to recall the phone, they still need to create a solution to the problem. Until they design/build it, then they wont recall. My thoughts on that are that the white iPhone will be almost immune to the problem (because of the white paint/covering on the antenna) so maybe that would be a better way to go.

Apple knew of this problem a long time ago and went well out of their way to skip the Q&A to detect it very early. Its also wierd that this is the first time Apple have produced a phone case, and my guess is they knew that they would have to give one away (because they knew their antenna was flawed) so rather than paying a lot of money to a 3rd party supplier like Belkin, they’d eat the 30c per bumber and profit by selling them at $30 each.

Well done, Apple. you have completely lowered yourself even deeper into the shithole 🙂 Nice way to treat your millions of loyal customers by denying their problems exist! Here is hoping that Android buries you into the ground! Oh wait, they did!!! Imma let you finish n’ all, but they activated 3.5 million Android phones (Activated is not the same as Sold, as they sold MANY more im sure!!) in the same 22 days you SOLD 3 million phones! Toodles!!