Consumer Reports: iPhone 4S antenna doesn't suck

Antennagate closed


The product testers at Consumer Reports have given the iPhone 4S a clean bill of health.

"Apple's newest smart phone performed very well in our tests," CR's Mike Gikas said in a statement issued on Tuesday, "and while it closely resembles the iPhone 4 in appearance, it doesn't suffer the reception problem we found in its predecessor in special tests in our labs."

CR's condemnation of the iPhone 4's antenna design was a major contributor to what became known as "Antennagate" – a storm of criticism that led to Apple firmly denying the problem, saying instead that "gripping almost any mobile phone in certain ways will reduce its reception" and that the one thing they were "stunned" to discover was that the way the iPhone 4 displayed its signal-strength bars was "totally wrong."

Criticism continued, however – so much so that Steve Jobs found himself in front of a hastily called news conference two weeks later, declaring that "There is no Antennagate."

At that event, Jobs said that a Bloomberg article that reported that he had been warned of the iPhone 4's reception problems was "a total crock" and "total bullshit."

Despite that crock of bullshit, however, Jobs did offer to supply iPhone 4 users with free antenna-covering and reception-aiding bumpers.

CR, however, refused to change its assessment – and when Verizon began selling a CDMA version of the iPhone 4, the product testers said that its antenna was flawed, as well.

But now the iPhone 4S is out, and according to CR the antenna flaw has been fixed – not that there was anything that needed fixing, according to Apple.

We wouldn't, however, go so far as to say that CR and Apple are now bosom buddies. In the testers' latest smartphone rankings, the iPhone 4S ranks behind "the Samsung Galaxy S II phones, the Motorola Droid Bionic, and several other phones that boast larger displays than the iPhone 4S and run on faster 4G networks." ®

Broader topics


Other stories you might like

  • Toyota, Subaru recall EVs because tires might literally fall off
    Toyota says 'all of the hub bolts' can loosen even 'after low-mileage use'

    Toyota and Subaru are recalling several thousand electric vehicles that might spontaneously shed tires due to self-loosening hub bolts. 

    Toyota issued the recall last week for 2023 bZ4X all-electric SUVs, 2,700 of which are affected, the automaker said. Subaru is recalling all-electric Solterras, which were developed jointly with Toyota and have the same issue, Reuters reported.

    Japan's auto safety regulating body said "sharp turns and sudden braking could cause a hub bolt to loosen," Reuters said, though it's unknown if any actual accidents have been caused by the defect. In its recall notice, Toyota said "all of the hub bolts" can loosen "after low-mileage use," but said it was still investigating the cause of, and driving conditions that can lead to, the issue. 

    Continue reading
  • Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise adds Wi-Fi 6E to 'premium' access points
    Company claims standard will improve performance in dense environments

    Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise is the latest networking outfit to add Wi-Fi 6E capability to its hardware, opening up access to the less congested 6GHz spectrum for business users.

    The France-based company just revealed the OmniAccess Stellar 14xx series of wireless access points, which are set for availability from this September. Alcatel-Lucent Enterprise said its first Wi-Fi 6E device will be a high-end "premium" Access Point and will be followed by a mid-range product by the end of the year.

    Wi-Fi 6E is compatible with the Wi-Fi 6 standard, but adds the ability to use channels in the 6GHz portion of the spectrum, a feature that will be built into the upcoming Wi-Fi 7 standard from the start. This enables users to reduce network contention, or so the argument goes, as the 6GHz portion of the spectrum is less congested with other traffic than the existing 2.4GHz and 5GHz frequencies used for Wi-Fi access.

    Continue reading
  • Will Lenovo ever think beyond hardware?
    Then again, why develop your own software à la HPE GreenLake when you can use someone else's?

    Analysis Lenovo fancies its TruScale anything-as-a-service (XaaS) platform as a more flexible competitor to HPE GreenLake or Dell Apex. Unlike its rivals, Lenovo doesn't believe it needs to mimic all aspects of the cloud to be successful.

    While subscription services are nothing new for Lenovo, the company only recently consolidated its offerings into a unified XaaS service called TruScale.

    On the surface TruScale ticks most of the XaaS boxes — cloud-like consumption model, subscription pricing — and it works just like you'd expect. Sign up for a certain amount of compute capacity and a short time later a rack full of pre-plumbed compute, storage, and network boxes are delivered to your place of choosing, whether that's a private datacenter, colo, or edge location.

    Continue reading

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2022