Consumer Reports was no iPhone killer and they’re no iPad killer, either

“I suppose conspiracy theories might be in order. When Consumer Reports concluded that they couldn’t recommend the iPhone 4 because of alleged reception problems if you held the handset the wrong way, they might have really expected to see sales of Apple’s smartphone plummet,” Gene Steinberg writes for TechNightOwl. “But it doesn’t seem there was any impact at all, other than in the quarter before the iPhone 4S came out. That was when customers apparently remained on the sidelines awaiting the new model, not because CR had anything to say about it.”

“That’s quite a difference from the auto industry. When CR downgrades a motor vehicle for severe handling defects — a few models nearly overturned during emergency handling tests — you can bet manufacturers will take notice,” Steinberg writes. “But that’s the car business. With the iPhone, Apple didn’t pay attention to CR’s non-recommendation. The customers didn’t either, obviously, or not in any significant way.”

Steinberg writes, “Now CR tried once again to get in front of the debate when some people complained that the new iPad ran hot… The temperature tests of other tablets that indicate the difference between them and the new iPad is, at best, a slight to none. Under normal use and service, those variations wouldn’t be terribly noticeable. As these tests are repeated and published, it makes CR look more and more foolish. Clearly, they targeted Apple, hoping, perhaps, to find a serious defect and gain more attention than they received when they messed up the iPhone 4 test.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Bird cage liner for bird-haters.

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  1. Face it, Consumer Reports over the years has locked themselves into a situation where many or most of their readers go to them looking for the negative aspects of any product. And Consumer Reports then has to deliver that in order to satisfy their customers, whether it makes sense or not.

    I would not want to live that way. They may be right at times, but they have created their own situation and have to live with it.

    There are good products out there. Who knew!

    1. I do understand CR’s problem. Since the advent of the Internet, reporting of products is no longer the sole domain of CR. There are many competitors on the Web that could give better or worse reporting and this has impacted CR bread-and-butter business. With so many competitors, there is the temptation to cut corners by choosing a niche. CR has chosen the niche of nitpicking popular products and bashing Apple has become its new bread-and-butter activity.

  2. I’ve had no problems with my iPad 3. I play games, watch Netflix, read ebooks and I haven’t seen any “heating” issues whatsoever with it.

    At this point I don’t bother to pay attention to CR and the other Apple bashing publications. These people are just looking for something – anything – to use as ammunition against Apple.

    The iPad 3 is the tablet I’ve always wanted. Loved my iPad 1, but the iPad 3 is sooooooo much better.

    1. My experiences with the iPad (3) are exactly the same as yours. The new iPad is a phenomenally wonderful computer, and like you, I’ve stepped up from the original iPad. The original iPad was and is still a great device, just doesn’t seem as great when compared to the 3.

      1. +1
        I have been using my “New iPad” for the past hour reading news on the web and the back actually feels cool to the touch.

        I also upgraded from the original iPad, in large part to get the camera. The new display still amazes me.

        I am an old fan of CR, but I have lost my regard for them over the past few years. I no longer trust them to be unbiased, and question the “professionalism” of their professional testers. I prefer to look to the many sites that provide actual user reviews.

    2. I feel almost the same, I never had iPad 1, I had iPad 2 64gb Wi-Fi, now I have iPad 3rd Gen 64gb 4G AT&T, I love it the screen is what the iPad needed from day 1. The only thing I would like is 256gb. This new iPad is great though!!!

  3. Before the iPhone 4, no one knew that smartphones could suffer from signal loss if you held the phone a certain way.

    Before the new iPad, no one knew that tablets could run warm to the touch.

    The lengths that the tech press will go to to expose Apple’s products as anything less than what they are is depressing. I’d hate to be in Apple’s PR department and have to deal with the level of retardery that must assault them on a daily basis.

  4. CR, once upon a time, was a valuable, trusted resource, but there comes a time when those institutions outlive their usefulness, and it can be difficult for those institutions to admit that to themselves. CR’s time has clearly come and gone.

    1. Who has been more successful? : Audi, who was pilloried for a non-existent problem in the “unintended acceleration fiasco, or Consumer Reports

      I worked at the time for a major competitor to Audi, but knew that if CR had picked us out as a whipping boy, it would have been assumed that we were guilty. Glad they survived it.

  5. Apple product-bashing is becoming a great way to get attention. This Heatgate issue is one of the worst forms of blowing minor “issues” out of proportion. People are actually calling the heat issues as a form of “overheating” which has an implication of a device not functioning properly. Considering the indicated heat was barely higher than the human body temperature this issue is being greatly exaggerated. Bloggers and publications just love to jump any anything related to Apple just to get their own two cents in on the topic no matter how poorly informed they are.

    Same with iPad Batterygate. Batterygate was built up from massive misinformation about common battery charging techniques. How Apple is supposedly lying to users about battery charging time is absolutely ridiculous. Really, what number of consumers keep an accurate time on how long they charge a product. Usually, you’re told to charge a product for a certain period of time and remove it. Who the hell checks whether the battery is actually at 100%? Normally you just go by the indicator on the device saying the battery is at full charge and you live with it.

    When it comes to some Apple product you have all these so-called experts trying to find some small fault so they can write about how Apple is building faulty products to stir up some trouble. It’s proving ineffective to slow Apple sales, but it shouldn’t be happening at all. There are plenty of other cheap products they can go after if they think they’re helping consumers get decent products.

  6. When Consumer Reports refused to recommend the iPhone 4 because of problems with the antenna, they were simply reporting the facts they found. They were not looking to bash Apple; they were just reporting the same truth that many iPhone 4 owners, including myself, had discovered.

    Apple clearly had a bad antenna design, and didn’t want to admit it. Until they relented and sent out free “bumper” cases to alleviate the problem, any consumer who experienced signal loss had to either buy a case or cover the metal strips with ugly tape.

    CR was saying: “you have a problem, and you need to fix it”.

    CR consistently lists other Apple Computers, iPads and iPhones and its customer support at the top of its ratings.

    If you have a problem with Consumer Reports, don’t buy it; and then quit your whining about a perceived conspiracy against Apple.

    1. There may have been an issue with the antenna on iPhone 4, although it did exist in other phones. The heat issue in iPad is really stretching it again as it is no more or less hot than others. They really are just hit-whoring because it’s Apple.

    2. The problem with CR’s report on this is the fact that they didn’t point out any one else’s phone. My HTC behaved/behaves the same way when I cup the phone in the palm of my hand. It looses at least 2 or more bars. I guess since HTC is a China phone they get a pass.

    3. I don’t think it’s a “conspiracy”, it’s just half-assed reporting to generate readership.

      The antenna design for the iPhone 4 was no more flawed than any number of manufacturer’s designs (one of the drawbacks to copying Apple I imagine). If you were following the whole coverage of the issue, you may have picked that up along with the rest of the “whiners” that know CR isn’t the last word when it comes to consumer electronics.

  7. “…they were simply reporting the facts they found.”

    No they weren’t. They were SELECTING the facts they found. Numerous reports showed how many other brands of phones had signal attenuation if held in certain ways. People even posted videos of various brands on YouTube showing exactly this. CR completely ignored all of that information to focus on Apple.

  8. I don’t trust the bastards, but I also think that in certain categories, CR is better than others. I think that regarding appliances, electronics, home entertainment, tech- especially Apple ( big difference between Mac and Windows)- they’re so useless it seems like money is involved. In fact, lately they’re asking for donations- not doing so well, perhaps?…

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