Consumer Reports: Verizon iPhone 4 has antenna ‘problem’; not recommended

“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,” Paul Reynolds and Mike Gikas write for Consumer reports.

“The problem is similar to the one we confirmed in July with the AT&T version of Apple’s newest smart phone. It can occur when you hold either version of the phone in a specific but quite natural way in which a gap in the phone’s external casing is covered,” Reynolds and Gikas write. “The phone performs superbly in most other respects, and using the iPhone 4 with a case can alleviate the problem.”

“With the iPhone 4, we placed a finger in contact with the lower-left-side gap. Reception typically dropped notably within 15 seconds or so of the gap being bridged. The iPhone eventually dropped calls when touched at very low signal strength—that is, at levels of around one bar in the phone’s signal-strength meter.”

MacDailyNews Take: All smartphones attenuate when held.

“At each level at which calls were dropped, we subsequently tried to place calls from the iPhone with our finger covering the gap,” Reynolds and Gikas write. “In all such cases, we couldn’t initiate a call… When we placed the Verizon iPhone 4 into the Apple iPhone 4 Bumper, a $29 frame-like cover sold by the company, the problem was essentially eliminated, as it was in our original tests of the AT&T iPhone, when it was placed into a Bumper.”

Reynolds and Gikas write, “We are not including the Verizon iPhone 4 in our list of recommended smart phones, despite its high ranking in our Ratings.”

MacDailyNews Take: “High ranking,” as in: Atop.

Full article – Think Before You Click™here.

MacDailyNews Take: And so concludes Consumer Remorse’s latest attempt to ride Apple’s coattails to free publicity for a rag we wouldn’t recommend to anyone for anything.

Related articles:
Consumer Reports continues laughable vendetta against iPhone 4 – January 14, 2011
Android sweeps Consumer Reports’ rankings as iPhone 4 is omitted – November 17, 2010
All of Consumer Reports’ ‘recommended’ smartphones suffer attenuation when held – July 19, 2010
Consumer Reports: Apple’s free Bumper case does not earn iPhone 4 our recommendation – July 16, 2010
Consumer Reports: Apple’s Bumper case fixes iPhone 4 signal-loss issue – July 15, 2010
Consumer Reports continues harping on iPhone 4 attenuation issue – July 14, 2010
Electromagnetic engineer: Consumer Reports’ iPhone 4 study flawed – July 13, 2010
The Consumer Reports – Apple iPhone 4 fiasco – July 13, 2010
Consumer Reports: Oh yeah, almost forgot, Apple iPhone 4 is also the best smartphone on the market – July 12, 2010
Consumer Reports: We cannot recommend Apple iPhone 4 – July 12, 2010
Consumer Reports: Apple Retail Store is the best place to buy a cellphone – May 11, 2010
Consumer Reports: AT&T dead last in service survey; 98% of iPhone users would buy iPhone again – December 01, 2009
Consumer Reports does their readership a disservice, says viruses target Apple Macs – December 13, 2005
Consumer Reports: Apple’s new iPod screens scratch-prone like iPod nanos – October 28, 2005
Consumer Reports dubiously finds 20-percent of Mac users ‘detected’ virus in last two years -UPDATED – August 10, 2005


    1. Consumer Reports is run by Communist Obamanidadjad followers. They hate capitalism, private property, the constitution, and the best company on the planet, Apple. Who cares what they any of them have to say. We will vote the other wing nuts out next year and ignore CR like we ignore the rest of the Government Controlled Media.

        1. The Dissonance is interesting, vitriol not withstanding. Apple is a very very capitalist company. It manufactures great products with cheap labor overseas, like many more conservative-minded corporations, while addressing more liberal causes at home. It will probably stay out of some people’s crosshairs that way, but the fact remains that if they paid Chinese wages here at home, people would be screaming. I love Apple products and buy them often, and I’m not condemning Apple for making money- that’s the way capitalism should work, but I do admit the dissonance 😉

  1. I’ve got a new VZW iPhone, and yeah, the attenuation happens, but I don’t find it to be a “natural” position at all. Haven’t dropped a call yet, and I live in rural Ohio where even 3 bars is a rarity (5 is the max)

  2. assanine
    they once gave Saab a bad review and then it was uncovered that they did not test one.
    BS review from a lame-o “magazine” that will try and rate anything from a phone to a piece of gum for “flavor”
    subjective and biased towards Redmond does not begin to describe that crap outfit

    1. asinine*

      Sorry, spelling and grammar errors bug me a lot. I’m somewhat OCD about it. Plus, I figured you’d want to know so you didn’t go around writing “ass” everywhere.

    2. Circa 1990, CR flamed the Audi for having a crooked gate on their automatic transmission … and within six months, they praised Mercedes to the high heavens for having the same exact feature. This is called “Hypocrisy”.

      Around the same time, they panned VW for a rear window defogger that was a simple on/off switch and praised the Renault Alliance for its defogger being on a relay that ran for ~10 minutes. Only problem was that the Renault’s relay had a habit of failing … in the “ON” position … and it was NOT installed on a keyed line, which meant that the car would DOA with a drained battery … and do keep in mind that rear window defoggers are mostly used on cold winter days (& nights). This is called “Incomplete Engineering Analysis”.

      Thus ended my support of CR and my subscription payments.


    3. Haven’t read CR since 1965 when they rated the Ford Fairlane 500 as the best car on the road, not a Porsche 911, not a ’65 427 BB Corvette, not a Jaguar XKE or an AC Cobra, not even a ’65 Mustang, but a Ford Fairlane 500!!!

  3. In about 1970 or ’71 I used CR to find a decent canned ham. Their recommendation was really great. Some years later I was researching stereo receivers and looked at CR for their pick… It was a brand that all the other reviews had panned, then I discovered that their rating was mostly based on the FM reception… That was the last time I even bothered to consider what they had to say relative to anything… My iPhone 3GS works great, never dropped a call anywhere. Take that CR, you’ve only been right once and that was about a chunk of pig meat.

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