iPhone, iPad Games, Apps, Reviews, News Thu, 16 Jul 2015 12:57:54 +0000 en-US hourly 1 An open letter to tech journalists covering iPhone 6 Plus bending issue Tue, 30 Sep 2014 18:23:32 +0000 Read More]]> Apple’s entry into the big screen smartphone market has been largely successful considering the record 10 million iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus units sold in the opening weekend, however there has been one particular “issue” that seems to suggest otherwise.

After a few images of a bent iPhone 6 plus surfaced online the media took immediate notice and widely reported the “bendgate”. A video posted by Unbox Therapy demonstrated how putting a lot of pressure can bend the iPhone 6 plus went viral. As the mainstream media and even television shows took notice, it became obvious that Apple would soon have to issue a public response to iPhone 6 plus bending when someone tried to, you guessed it, bend the phone.

We reported on Apple’s response and the company even invited the press to iPhone testing facility to show how the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 plus go through a series of test to simulate real world usage.

Smartphone insurance company Square Trade’s verdict was simply that the latest phones from Apple are “more durable than any before them.”

Most publications which reviewed the device after testing it wrote highly about the new phones and praised Apple for creating the best iPhone yet.

If this wasn’t enough, Consumer Reports unhappy with the “unscientific” nature of the viral video went ahead and performed their own scientific tests to examine how much force does it take to break the new phones. The tests revealed that it takes 70 pounds to bend the iPhone 6 and 90 pounds to bend the iPhone 6 plus. The publication concluded “any of these phones should stand up to typical use.”

After reading multiple stories and watching many videos, here are my views and also an open letter to tech journalists.

Dear Journalists,

One thing is clear: Things break! That’s it. Things break!

If one puts enough pressure or handles things in a way it is not meant to then it would most certainly break.

I sincerely appreciate all the drop tests and bend tests that are published online. These videos show us the extent of damage that can be caused to our devices in case it suffers an extreme situation. While the iPhone 6 plus did survive the drop test here and here, it seems that it doesn’t pass the bend test.

I’ve wondered why this happens. Each iPhone bending video I watch shows the person trying very hard, gasping, pursing their lips, fingers shivering and skin blanching to the extreme while performing the bendgate. They are giving it whatever they have to prove that iPhone 6 plus bends when you put extreme pressure on it.

If the same people who performed this test actually took time and came back to report that the iPhone 6 plus bends under normal use over a period of maybe 15 or 30 days it would have proved to be a more believable story.

Only 9 out of the 10 million reported any bending issue, according to Apple. So, people who actually use their phone like a phone most certainly are not complaining about this issue.

One argument that has become common is that Samsung phones are large too, but it does not bend as much as iPhone. I agree. But, does Apple have to opt for plastic body so that we can be happy that it does not bend much when we intentionally want to bend it? I think Apple is probably not catering to such audience.

I actually wonder why Apple was never struck with “entanglegate” since the headphones entangle when you put it in your pockets. Shocking! Right?

iPhone 6 has an aluminium body and a glass front, the company does not claim either of the materials to be non-destructible. So, stop trying to prove the obvious by intentionally bending the phone. Instead try using the phone in real life and then come back and report if it didn’t meet your expectations. Apple is not responsible for people intentionally trying to deform the device, however if the bending occurs as a result of normal use then the device should be covered under Apple warranty and that story is worth highlighting.

]]> 0 White iPhone 4 Not Thicker Than Black Model [Consumer Reports] Fri, 06 May 2011 17:54:29 +0000 Read More]]> White iPhone 4 Thickness Test

Since the launch of iPhone 4 last year Apple’s fourth gen smartphone has been a subject of controversy. Last year the final design was leaked weeks ahead of the official announcement, reports of the phone suffering from antennagate were widely reported and then the white iPhone 4 model was delayed as the company faced manufacturing issues.

Now, when Apple finally made the white iPhone 4 available a few buyers claimed that the white model is thicker than the black model. Apple’s product website did not mention any change in the design specifications of the new model and the buyers claims were not backed with any credible way of measuring the difference in thickness.

Consumer Reports were quick to conduct extensive testing in their labs with a pair of “high-quality calipers” and confirmed that the white iPhone 4 had the same depth as the black version.

Many people feared that potential difference in depth could make many third party cases and covers for iPhone 4 not compatible with the white color but, Consumer Reports tried several cases which they had bought for the black one and each fit the white model just like they were intended to.

]]> 3 iPad 2 leads tablet market in quality and price – Consumer Reports Tue, 05 Apr 2011 17:10:40 +0000 Read More]]> iPad 2 Photo

White iPad 2

Consumer Reports, the same outlet that refused to recommend the iPhone 4, but still rated it as the best smartphone on the market, has announced that Apple’s iPad 2 is the best option on the market – at the moment.

Paul Reynolds, Electronics Editor at Consumer Reports had this to say: “So far, Apple is leading the tablet market in both quality and price, which is unusual for a company whose products are usually premium priced. However, it’s likely we’ll see more competitive pricing in tablets as other models begin to hit the market.”

Consumer Reports also concluded that the Motorola Xoom is the iPad 2’s biggest rival; offering features such as a memory card slot and Flash support, that the iPad 2 does not. But overall out of Motorola’s offering, and those of Archos, Dell, Samsung and Viewsonic – and Apple’s original iPad – they concluded that the iPad 2 in its WiFi plus 3G form factor topped all the ratings, scoring “Excellent” in nearly every category.

The iPad 2, as one would expect, was far and away the best tablet on usability and battery life. Where as the Motorola Xoom only managed a tie with Apple’s original iPad overall – despite offering some serious second gen. tablet features.

The full report is available over at Consumer Reports. But it seems that once again Apple are leaps and bounds ahead of the competition (perhaps an entire generation ahead of most of their competitors) at this point in 2011.

Consumer Reports did note that Apple should expect fierce competition later this year, when other manufacturers start to play catch up in earnest. We’ll be here watching closely, and hope that is the case – as competition can only mean that we get faster, lighter and more fun toys in the future.

Do you think Apple will rule the roost until the iPad 3 hits, and beyond? Or should we expect things to get much closer in the tablet market towards the end of 2011? Have your say in the comments…

]]> 1 Consumer Reports Reinstates iPhone 4 Advisory Tue, 14 Sep 2010 17:41:40 +0000 Read More]]> iPhone 4 Bumper Case

Consumer Reports came in for some stick around the time of the iPhone 4 launch. Overall they rated Apple’s new iPhone 4 as the best smartphone they had ever reviewed, whilst simultaneously issuing a warning to its readers that it could not recommend the device because of the antenna problems they believed were inherent in the device.

When Apple announced their free Bumper program for iPhone 4’s they relaxed their position to some degree. But since Apple have announced an end to the free Bumper program, at the end of September, Consumer Reports have restated their complaint that the iPhone 4 cannot be recommended because it has an inherent design fault that has to be ameliorated by consumers getting a case for the device.

This seems rather strange, and yet another slightly contradictory verdict from the popular consumer advice organisation, when one considers that Apple have said they will still give users a free iPhone 4 Bumper, if they ask for it, even after the automatic free Bumper program ends.

Do you wish Consumer Reports would make up their mind? Or do you think they are right to keep the pressure on Apple? Have your say in the comments…

]]> 2 Apple posts iPhone 4 Press Conference Video Sat, 17 Jul 2010 01:20:57 +0000 Read More]]> Apple was quick to post the video of iPhone 4 press conference on its website. If you missed our live coverage then head over to to stream the video online.

Be sure to read our July 16th iPhone 4 press conference round up here.

Apple has also posted some new information about its antenna design & testing facilities in which they have invested more than $100 million.

During the press conference Steve Jobs said that the almost all smartphones suffer from weak spots and if the phones are held with a tight grip then it can cause the signal bars to drop.

]]> 0 iPhone 4 Press Conference Round Up Sat, 17 Jul 2010 00:42:51 +0000 Read More]]> iPhone 4 press conference

Today Apple responded to all the issues raised by the media related to iPhone 4 reception and antenna design. The press conference began with the iPhone antenna song written by a youtuber.

Steve Jobs gave a presentation which was followed by a long Q&A.  The press conference aimed at identifying the iPhone 4 problem, providing data related to the issue and offering solutions.

The tone of the event was “smartphones aren’t perfect” and almost every smartphone manufacturer has to deal with weak spots. When you grip your phone tightly or touch its weak spot the signal bars drop and it is not unique to iPhone 4. Steve Jobs compared the signal bar drop in Blackberry Bold 9700, HTC Droid Eris and Samsung Omnia II which showed that the death grip issue exists in those phones too.

Nokia recently responded to Apple mentioning the fact some of their phones ship with stickers on the back that say “don’t touch here” and said:

In general, antenna performance of a mobile device/phone may be affected with a tight grip, depending on how the device is held.

One of the reasons why many people were able to reproduce the signal drop due to antennagate was that iPhone 4 design marks its weak spot with a line in the stainless steel band. If the line did not exist then everyone would have touched the phone at a different point and thus would not have identified it as a major issue.

Apple released iOS 4.0.1 yesterday which fixes the signal strength algorithm so that the bar drop might not appear as drastic as it did before.

Steve Jobs said that people are reporting better reception than they ever did with any other version of iPhone and they were aware of the weak spot but didn’t think of it as a big issue as it exists for the entire industry.

During the press conference Jobs offered some interesting data which suggests that the issues are being faced by very few people.

Apple would go onto investigate why even after an improved antenna design the iPhone 4 drops less than one additional call for every 100 calls. Steve Jobs suggested that this could be because 80% of iPhone 3GS users bought a case for their device while only 20% users bought a case for iPhone 4 and cited Consumer Reports who recently reported that Apple’s bumper case solves the death grip issue.

The iPhone 4 “issues” according to Apple is affecting a very small percentage of users and to make everyone happy Apple will offer bumper case for free to all iPhone 4 customers. If you’ve already bought a bumper case then you would be eligible for a refund however the purchase of third party cases won’t be refunded. Bumper cases will be offered for free until September 30th and after that Apple will re-evaluate their strategy. You will be able to choose either a bumper case or third party case from Apple’s website sometime starting next week.

Apple will be releasing a software fix for the proximity sensor and also announced that the white iPhone 4 will be available later this month. iPhone 4 will be available in 17 more countries on 30th July.

By highlighting the antennagate and weak spot issue in most smartphones Steve Jobs acknowledged that this issue exists for the entire industry and is a challenge which they hope to overcome in future. For customers who are still not satisfied with a free bumper or the weak spot explanation, Apple suggests getting a full refund by returning the undamaged device.

]]> 0 Will Apple (AAPL) Recall iPhone 4 Due to Reception Issues? (Poll) Tue, 13 Jul 2010 18:38:47 +0000 Read More]]> You know that an issue with a device has hit the mainstream media when Jeremy Clarkson works it into an introduction for The Stig on BBC’s Top Gear! For those that don’t know “The Stig” is a legendary, almost mythological character who never takes his racing helmet off, and test drives cars for the UK based, but internationally famous, and fantastically irreverent car show. According to Clarkson The Stig “doesn’t work unless you hold him correctly!”

Sound familiar?

Top Gear pokes fun at the iPhone 4 Death Grip

We reported yesterday that the popular Consumer Reports website had withdrawn its interim recommendation of the iPhone 4 after conducting its own “technical analysis” of the device’s reception issue. Regardless of whether their analysis is accurate or not, Consumer Reports holds massive sway for US consumers. Consequently the internet is alight today with bloggers claiming that even their parents, and in some cases grandparents now know the that iPhone 4 has a fatal flaw!

Not everyone, however, is as convinced as some of the validity of Consumer Reports’ findings. Blogger Bob Egan, who spent much of his career as an electromagnetic engineer working on exactly the kind of issues that now face Apple on the iPhone 4, had this to say:

Consumer reports ‘RF’ engineers should know better than to think they can run an engineering grade test for an issue like this in a shielded room. And certainly not one with people in it.

To even reasonably run a scientific test, the iPhone should have been sitting on a non-metallic pedestal inside an anechoic chamber. The base station simulator should have been also sitting outside the chamber and had a calibrated antenna plumbed to it from inside the chamber.

Bottom line. From what I can see in the reports, Consumer Reports replicated the same uncontrolled, unscientific experiments that many of the blogging sites have done.

But still Cult of Mac have collected a band of “PR experts” who are baying for Apple to initiate a recall for the iPhone 4 immediately, or according to them face forever tarnishing their brand image!

All of this noise, and Apple ruffling more feathers today by apparently culling complaints about the iPhone 4 from their own web forums has caused this story to pick up more and more inertia. And now this story is well and truly finding its way onto more and more main stream media outlets.

Off the back of this noise AAPL (NASDAQ:AAPL) stock dropped around $10 earlier today. 3% down in a market that was overall around 1% up.

Soon after the mornings news some Wall street heavy weights weighed in with their view on the iPhone 4 situation…

“To date, we have not seen any overwhelming evidence of iPhone 4 units being returned,” Barclays analyst Ben Reitzes wrote.

“Ultimately we believe this PR black eye takes away some near-term upside, but it does not change the long-term trajectory” of the iPhone 4, wrote PiperJaffray’s Gene Munster.

Overall pretty much everyone from the markets seem to think that a product recall is “highly unlikely”.

And Citigroup’s analyst Richard Gardner still predicts a target price of $330/share for AAPL. And as the day draws on AAPL is on the rise again.

One thing that pretty much everyone on both sides of the growing divide between those that feel the iPhone 4 is flawed and should be recalled, and those that feel that this is a storm in a teacup, agree on the fact that Apple’s continuing silence, and their overall handling of this situation to date is extremely disappointing.

So, after weighing all the evidence so far perhaps you’d like to take part in our Poll?

Or share your thoughts in the comments…

]]> 0 Consumer Reports Can’t Recommend iPhone 4 due to Reception Issues Mon, 12 Jul 2010 18:42:26 +0000 Read More]]> Consumer Reports has completed its lab testing of the iPhone 4, and despite it scoring higher than all other mobile phones it was compared to, in all categories bar one, they cannot recommend it. And understandably so. Their lab tests show that the reception issues that many claim the iPhone 4 has are in fact repeatable.

Here is what they have to say:

It’s official. Consumer Reports’ engineers have just completed testing the iPhone 4, and have confirmed that there is a problem with its reception. When your finger or hand touches a spot on the phone’s lower left side—an easy thing, especially for lefties—the signal can significantly degrade enough to cause you to lose your connection altogether if you’re in an area with a weak signal. Due to this problem, we can’t recommend the iPhone 4.

Our findings call into question the recent claim by Apple that the iPhone 4’s signal-strength issues were largely an optical illusion caused by faulty software that ‘mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength.’

Does this take the shine off your new iPhone 4? Or is it going to put you off buying one? Should Apple now, finally start giving away free Bumpers with iPhone 4s? Let us know your thoughts in the comments…

[ConsumerReports] ]]> 0