Posts Tagged ‘iPhone 4’

iPhone 4 Officially Confirmed on Verizon network

Tuesday, January 11th, 2011

A late Christmas present for Verizon customers

For those of you who have been patiently waiting for the iPhone to make the leap to another carrier before purchasing, now’s you chance. Verizon has officially unveiled the iPhone 4 on its network.

This won’t come as any surprise to those who have been following Verizon’s recent actions; buying up any domains having to do with the words “iPhone” and “Verizon”, the cryptic messages that a big announcement would be made today, or even the fact that the iPad had already made the move to the company’s network. The interesting fact is that the device will be shipped overnight to those who order online when the device goes on sale next month.

This means that there is a stockpile of the devices. It means that Verizon and Apple have been able to ship and store iPhones for the Verizon network without anyone getting a hold of one and having pictures of it plastered all over the internet. While the rumors were flying, they somehow managed to keep them out of the public eye and while today’s announcement may be no surprise, the fact that they have been able to keep the devices out of the hands of eager journalists and bloggers *is* a surprise.

Let’s face it, when it comes to Apple, the more it tries to keep a secret, the more it seems everyone is willing to bend a few laws to get a hold of a rumored device. It’s much more likely that in this instance, the new devices were manufactured and shipped while being packaged as AT&T devices, even though initial pictures of the device show a slightly different design. Is that a slight change to the location of the antenna assembly in order to avoid the infamous “deathgrip” that plagued early versions of AT&T’s iPhone 4?

The other surprising thing about this iPhone launch on the Verizon network? No LTE capability. The device will run strictly on the network’s 3G speeds. This may be the only disappointment to those who have been following the Verizon/Apple team up rumors. This would, however, open the door for the device to be launched on other CDMA networks but the lack of a definitive 4G capability means a lack of forward thinking. Unless of course, the iPhone 5 will be launched in June (as new version have been every year since the release of the iPhone) *with* LTE capability. That would be a nice kick in the junk to anyone who ran in and grabbed an iPhone 4 on Verizon at launch…

Of course now the Verizon commercials mocking the iPhone 4 for the lack of ability in regards to making video calls without being on WiFi is definitely going to be put to the test. Will they be able to continue to make such claims when their network sees the crush of the iPhone? Only time will tell.

Gritskrieg – End of Line

iPhone jailbreak now legal.

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

Legal Jailbreak - it even sounds bad.

(Yahoo) – Owners of iPhones and other smartphones are one step closer towards taking complete control of their gadgets, thanks to a new government ruling Monday on the practice of “jailbreaking.”

This weekend has seen a flurry of activity about digital rights, but the biggest news dropped Monday morning, when the FCC announced that it had made the controversial practice of “jailbreaking” your iPhone — or any other cell phone — legal.

Jailbreaking — the practice of unlocking a phone (and particularly an iPhone) so it can be used on another network and/or run other applications than those approved by Apple — has technically been illegal for years. Most jailbroken phones are used on the U.S. T-Mobile network or on overseas carriers, or are used to run applications that Apple refuses to sell, such as Safari ad-blocking apps, alternate keyboard layouts, or programs that change the interface to the iPhone’s SMS system and the way its icons are laid out.

While technically illegal, no one has been sued or prosecuted for the practice. (Apple does seriously frown on the practice, and jailbreaking your phone will still void your warranty.) It’s estimated that more than a million iPhone owners have jailbroken their handsets.

Apple fought hard against the legalization, arguing that jailbreaking was a form of copyright violation. The FCC disagreed, saying that jailbreaking merely enhanced the inter-operability of the phone, and was thus legitimate under fair-use rules

Will Apple fall down, go boom?

Thursday, July 15th, 2010

UPDATE – FRIDAY 7/16/10 1:30PM CDT:
The Press Conference is over. The proximity sensor issue will be a software fix but no questions and no answers about the problem with the WiFi antenna on the iPhone 3 and 3GS being disabled when upgrading to iOS 4.

The overall feeling from this has been that there is going to be just enough done for damage control. Since they don’t actually admit there’s a problem, I think we’re supposed to see the free cases as a boon from our Overlords at Apple. It seems even that effort is condescending when supposedly no problem but Apple just wants to make sure its “customers are happy”.

Overall, I’m disappointed in the response. There was a lot of finger pointing, a lot of chest puffing, and a lot of calling out specific blogs and news outlets as being liars and posting inflammatory information. There’s some good news in all of it for people who have problems with the “death grip” but overall I’m left with the feeling that we’ve been given a piece of candy because we held our breath till we turned blue…

UPDATE – FRIDAY 7/16/10 1:20PM CDT: Jobs reiterated several times that every smartphone has “antenna problems” when held without a case and managed to sidestep the question of whether an apology is due to the customers who bought phones on day one. There’s no apology here, no admission that there was something wrong with the phone, no recollection of any data that came up before the release that would have shown there was a problem with the antenna, and a lot of finger pointing at other manufacturers that have the same issue but just aren’t as “popular” as the new iPhone.  Over all, Jobs is coming off somewhat jerk-ish, posing the issues and stories that have arisen since launch day as “over reacting” and, in some cases, completely false.

Oh, and he didn’t fail to get his jab in at Gizmodo saying that sometimes “a website buys a stolen phone” in reference to why details about the device weren’t released to phone case manufacturers before the launch. He’s essentially saying that if they release details about a new product that people will stop buying older products… Sorry, but that rates a “Well, DUH!” from me.

UPDATE – Friday 7/16/10 12:50PM CDT: The Apple Press Conference is ongoing and the news is that Apple will be providing free cases to essentially anyone who asks for them.  iPhone users will be able to request the cases online late next week and the offer is good until September 30th.  They’re also waiving the restocking fees for anyone who wants to return the device if the “case solution” isn’t acceptable. Jobs has also stated that AT&T will be resetting contracts and fully refunding payments for any plans involving a contract that was started on an iPhone 4 when the device is returned.

The thing is, Jobs is admitting there’s a problem with the phone’s antenna without saying there’s a problem. He’s basically saying that there’s a problem with signal strength on every smartphone on the market when it’s gripped a certain way (based on which phone you’re talking about) but that the reason this has gotten so much attention is because the iPhone 4 sold so many units in so short a time. At least that’s what I’m getting out of his speech.  But it’s worth noting that Apple’s stock price has risen since the beginning of this news conference.

To the bottomless pit!!!

Original Post: Steve Jobs and Apple are taking a beating in the public opinion. The iPhone 4’s antenna issue has been getting a lot of press, which alone would be enough to tarnish a public image, but there’s been talk of the issues with the proximity sensor on the new device where it can either turn off the phone when a user puts the phone to their face (resulting in the call being lost) or inadvertently place the phone into speakerphone mode when the screen touches the user’s ear. And now reports are coming out that iOS 4 is causing issues with the WiFi radios on the iPhone 3 and 3GS causing them to become non-functional even when the software is rolled back to a prior version.

This is beginning to play out like a publicity nightmare for Apple. Not that it’s an oil spill in the Gulf doing billions of dollars worth of damage and with the potential to destroy an ecosystem but Apple is going to have to do some major damage control to keep their fanbase intact. There are too many things going on to continue saying, “You’re holding it wrong” or “It’s a software problem”. And by pointing out that there was a software glitch that made the phones “overestimate” signal strength and that the signal was actually weaker in most of the phones than what was shown on the screen’s bars seemed all too much like Apple was willing to point a finger at AT&T’s oft scorned network for the “death grip” issue.

Apple’s stock is beginning to be hit by the consumer doubts. Again, not as hard as say BP’s stock because of the “little” problem in the Gulf but it’s been driven down by the conceived unwillingness of Apple to fix the problem. Yeah, it’s only down 14 dollars in 3 days but the issue here would appear to be even investors are losing confidence in Apple’s previously sterling reputation.

Add to this that Apple has flatly denied a design flaw, refused to replace defective devices, and essentially created the majority of the bad press with their refusal to admit that there actually is a problem and it’s easier to understand why some of the company’s diehard fans are beginning to criticize Steve and Co.

Even some of the fanboys are jumping ship. Staunch defenders of Steve Jobs and Apple’s products are saying they’re finally fed up and are returning the phone. In some cases, they’re doing it until the issues are cleared up while in others, the new shiny Android run phones are beginning to find their ways into the lives of those who up until recently lived and died by their reliance and support of Apple products.

Rumors have circulated that a “silent recall” is in the works. Individuals who have gone to the stores to replace their device (claiming other issues because saying they have the “death grip” problem gets them nothing) have stated that the new device worked perfectly, suggesting that Apple may be quietly replacing the flawed devices with models that do not have the flaw.

So it’s no surprise that Apple has announced a press conference scheduled for tomorrow to address the recent issues and concerns investors, fans, and consumers have with the rash of problems that have been plaguing Apple recently.

Industry analysts are assuming that one of two things will happen in tomorrow’s press conference. That Apple will recall all of the initially released devices or will be providing free “bumper” cases which have been shown to alleviate the issue. The recall is less likely as there have been three million of the devices sold but may, in the long run, be the best way to repair an image which is now tarnished. The bumper cases seem more likely but free or not, many customers are bound to feel that this is merely a band aid to a problem that may rear its head again somewhere down the line.

"I promise when I take over the world, I won't hold it wrong..."

Regardless of what is said in tomorrow’s press conference, it’s hard to understand why it’s taken Apple so long to react to the problem. Of course when the issues make an appearance on David Letterman and Consumer Reports independently confirm the antenna problem in a controlled environment, it’s possible Apple may have been planning on staying mum on the whole affair before it got so much attention.

It’s hard to believe that a company that started off so strong nearly went under back in 1997. Harder to believe that a $150 million investment from Microsoft would be the turning point and that 13 years later, Apple would be challenging Microsoft for technological and financial dominance. And even harder to believe is that Apple would start getting press as becoming as bad as Microsoft in terms of customer service and the threat of a monopoly. And then a Microsoft executive comes around and compares your new phone to one of the worst fiascos in OS history (yes, Vista). Yikes.

Tomorrow, we’ll see if Apple will return to the humble, yet powerful, force it has always been or if it will continue to take the path of most giants. The bigger they are…

Gritskrieg – End of Line

The (free) Case of the iPhone 4 Signal issue

Wednesday, July 7th, 2010

Let's see, $30 to Apple for a problem they made or free +shipping... Hmm.

So you were one of the lucky (insane) 1.7 million people who was able to get their mitts on an iPhone 4 on launch day. Now you’re trouble is that you can’t avoid the “death grip” on the device and your signal is constantly dropping. Well, gizmodo.com started a petition to get Apple to provide free cases to the people experiencing the signal issue caused by holding the phone a certain way when Apple’s solution to the problem was to “buy a bumper case” to prevent your hand from touching the antenna contacts. While I praise their effort, I sincerely doubt Apple is going to provide the cases for free, particularly when the whole thing seems like a scam to me. You just happen to launch bumper cases that prevent the issue on the same day you launch the device with said problem?  Seems fishy to me but I also happen to believe my TV monitors my brain waves so take it as you will…

Now, I said Apple probably won’t deliver on the free cases, especially since they’re having a bit of a spat with the website that started the petition, but someone sat up and paid attention to the consumers and they’re ready to deliver. Cases.com has stepped up and is offering free cases to anyone willing to pay the shipping for one of their LifeGrip Silicone Cases. Why?  I suspect alien mind control but it might just be the best publicity move I’ve ever seen.

Seriously, with all of the attention the iPhone 4 has been getting, the confusion over how such a serious flaw could have made it to production, and the general dissatisfaction of those who experience the problem due to the way they hold the phone, this may very well be the start of something huge for the cases.com website. But as the cases are currently in the “pre-order” state, it’s hard to tell what the demand for this will be and how much revenue will be generated once the “free case” campaign ends.

If you’ve seen my phones, you know I’m a pretty diehard Otterbox fan but when someone comes out and does something like this, it makes you think they might be worth taking a look at for future purchases.

Gritskrieg – End of Line

iPhone 4 sales top 1.7 Million in 3 days, Jobs declares an “iWin”

Tuesday, June 29th, 2010

"Let's see, black mock neck, evil beard, piercing stare... Yup, time to take over the world."

It’s not even news… We all knew it was going to happen. The iPhone 4 hit the streets, people went berserk, lines stretched around corners, dogs and cats living together, mass hysteria. There were shortages, most stores sold out in a matter of hours, and a lot of people braved the weather, ridicule, and vuvuzuelas in an attempt to lay their hands on one of the new iPhones.

And even with the reported reception issues, fragile all glass casings that shattered from drops less than one foot, and a myriad of other lesser problems reported, people still praised the latest device in Steve Jobs’ bid to take over the world. Reviews came out noting the issues but stating it was easily the best iPhone to date.

With all of that in mind, and the fact that there were 600,000 pre-orders through the AT&T and Apple websites before demand brought the sites to their proverbial knees, it shouldn’t be a surprise that the iPhone 4 sold more than 1.7 million units in only three days. It might not be a surprise but it’s definitely something for Apple to brag about.

The previous record for Apple was topping a cool million with the launch of the 3GS and amid the tales of connection woes, many of the people who managed to purchase an iPhone reported much better reception in areas they had previously had issues in.

But the forums of many of the tech sites are filled with the concern that the iPhone 4’s reception issue was realized before launch and that the Apple “bumpers” are merely a means to garner even more money from eager Apple fans.  The bumpers sell for $30 apiece. Regardless of the reports and suspected treachery, Apple has managed to outdo themselves with the most successful device launch in the history of cellular devices.

Based on the initial sales reports, if iTunes becomes self-aware, we’re screwed.

Gritskrieg – End of Line

AT&T continues to have iTroubles with their website

Wednesday, June 16th, 2010

AT&T still having security issues

On the heels of last week’s security breach of AT&T’s iPad user database, another security “whoopsie” appears to have reared its ugly head. Heavy demand initially created problems with placing pre-orders for the 4th Gen iPhone on AT&T and Apple’s websites and now it appears there may be even more trouble for users waiting to get their hands on the new iPhone.

Several reports have been coming in that not only are users experiencing issues when trying to order the new device but some users that have been successful in ordering their phones have sent screenshots to media outlets apparently showing that someone else’s credit card is coming up in the payment options or that the shipping address appears to belong to someone other than themselves.

There have also been reports from users stating that they have received order confirmation emails for phones they did not order and that contained billing addresses and credit card information of the person who did order the phone. AT&T has not yet been able to reproduce the issue but state that they are looking into the matter. Currently, attempts to contact AT&T’s customer support are being met with the message that there are too many calls in queue.

Users attempting to use the Apple website to order the phone have reported errors. But this is based on the fact that Apple’s webpage still has to access the AT&T user database to check for eligibility and as such runs into the very same problem that is currently afflicting the AT&T website.

Those of you who have been fortunate enough to get an order in for the new iPhone may want to confirm the shipping and billing address… If you even got a confirmation email.

Gritskrieg – End of Line

Update: It would appear Apple has pushed back the pre-order delivery date to July 14th (later than the July 2nd date previously displayed) and that AT&T, while reporting they are “unable to replicate the issue” in regards to incorrect information showing up on orders and in confirmation emails, has suspended pre-orders for the iPhone 4 quoting that demand is just too high to manage at this time.

Anyone ready to call this an “iPocalypse” yet?










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