Apple Press Conference Friday: Recall Imminent?

Apple has scheduled a press conference for Friday morning. There is speculation the company will announce a recall of the iPhone 4.

I can't see a recall. Not with the cost estimated around $1 billion. And unless they have new defect-free models available, who's going to bring their only phone into Apple and leave it there for repair? Are they going to give out loaners? [More...]

Or, will we all have to bring our phones into Apple to have a bumper put on? That certainly would be cheaper. But that's just a bandaid, it doesn't fix the problem.

Or, will Apple confirm the defect and apologize and say they are busy at work on the iPhone 5 which won't have the problem, and everyone with an iPhone 4 will get a free iPhone 5 as soon as they're ready? Expensive, yes, but that would be a decent solution. Except, it will probably be sometime in 2011 before Apple can get the fix completed and order and receive the hardware parts and get everything manufactured. Which means bumper pads in the meantime.

Apple's in a pickle on this one. I mentioned yesterday my iPhone 4 dropped two calls yesterday. My iPhone 3G never dropped one in more than 2 years. As they were business calls, it was very annoying. I also couldn't send a text in the elevator, something my 3G did without problem. But it's gorgeous, the video is phenomenal, the sound clarity on calls is great, and I'm getting too old to learn new operating systems for phones. The prospect of learning how to use a Droid after 2 years on an iPhone is not something I look forward to.

I'm the typical loyal customer who tries to understand things can go wrong. If it's just my phone or car, I insist on a replacement. When it's happening to 1.7 million people, we just have to wait to see what they are going to offer to do. I'm very pro-Apple.

I cold come up with a list of 25 reasons to keep your defective iPhone with its antenna problem, even if it means months before a fix is in. I'd do it cheap too, like if Apple would just buy me new 15" Macbook Pro. If you know anyone at Apple who might be interested in taking a meeting about my pitch to see if they want to turn it into a national ad to run all over the country, feel free to send them this post.

I'm still on the 30 day return policy, so depending on what they say Friday, I may just return it and bite the bullet, head over to Verizon and buy the new Droid. It's really a shame, because but for the antenna issue, the i-phone 4 a great phone,a great toy and it loads internet sites faster than you'd believe possible. In trying to find something positive about this, all I can say is at least it's not affecting my iPad, which I bring everywhere these days. I even make new friends with the strangest people. Like the U.S. Marshal who goes through my bags at the courthouse metal detector. We both extolled it's great attributes, told each other how we use it, and he touted me to a great case that Best Buy has for it.

So, bottom line:1.7 million iphone 4 users will not be happy with a recall unless we have something just as cool to use while it's being repaired. A quick fix, like a bumper guard, until the iPhone 5 comes out would do the trick, but only if the iPhone 5 is offered free.

And what will this do to AT&T? Even though the problem is not their fault, and they sell other phones, a huge part of their business is Apple phones. If there's recall, what will they sell? No one will want to buy the 3G with the slow internet and no movie camera.

Apple has two problems: How to fix this without a cost to them of $1 billion, and second, they need to engage iPhone 4 customers in the deliberative process to make sure it's going to be acceptable to us consumers.

What would your advice to Apple be?

< Water Engineer Surfaces, Says Scott McInnis Lied | Change You Can Believe In >
  • The Online Magazine with Liberal coverage of crime-related political and injustice news

  • Contribute To TalkLeft

  • Display: Sort:
    You might want to consider EVO 4G... (none / 0) (#1)
    by mexboy on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 03:12:19 AM EST
    if you decide to drop your Iphone.


    I have the Iphone 3G and I'm seriously considering getting the EVO. Their pricing plan is something like 69.99, flat fee.

    David Pogue says that it's unpolished (none / 0) (#2)
    by andgarden on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 06:07:37 AM EST
    E.g., horrible battery life.

    If I were having a problem with my iPhone 4, I'd be pissed. I'm not.


    I like (none / 0) (#17)
    by CST on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 01:10:35 PM EST
    the Droid Incredible a lot so far, but I will say if I have one beef with it it's that the battery life isn't great.

    EVO (none / 0) (#22)
    by sumac on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 03:22:08 PM EST
    I have an EVO and it's great. I have not had issues with battery life, but I turned off a lot of the background tasks and animation.

    Better for me is that I live in a 4G city so the data rate is amazing.


    first (none / 0) (#3)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 09:06:40 AM EST
    I would fire the person who designed the antenna

    very (none / 0) (#5)
    by Capt Howdy on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 09:17:53 AM EST

    But... (none / 0) (#10)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 11:38:21 AM EST
    from Bloomberg news

    Apple's senior antenna expert voiced concern to Chief Executive Officer Steve Jobs in the early design phase of the iPhone 4 that the antenna design could lead to dropped calls, a person familiar with the matter said.

    Last year, Ruben Caballero, a senior engineer and antenna expert, informed Apple's management the device's design may hurt reception, said the person, who is not authorized to speak on Apple's behalf and asked not to be identified. A carrier partner also raised concerns about the antenna before the device's June 24 release, according to another person familiar with the situation.

    Unidentified and unauthorized source? (none / 0) (#14)
    by Farmboy on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 12:21:34 PM EST
    Gotta be the real deal!

    (I feel the same way about rumor sources whether it's tech news or political news. Vince Foster, anybody?)


    Lots of good suggestions (none / 0) (#4)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 09:16:10 AM EST
    they could follow and probably only one bad route to take. The best advice is don't pick a battle with CR.

    On the upside, a spokesperson from CR actually spoke highly of the iPhone attributes by referring to it as a dreamhouse but with a leak in the basement. That gives Apple the opening to put a cap on the leak (no BP pun intended) and get back to marketing the dreamhouse.

    Their stock has dropped about 5% since the CR announcement and it's down about 8% since the release date. That has to have their stockholders a bit on edge

    Never buy an Apple new release- (none / 0) (#6)
    by Joan in VA on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 09:54:45 AM EST
    wait for the first revision, which always follows. I know it's hard to wait, believe me, but to wait is to get a better, debugged product, often at a lower price, without the hassles of changing your old Apple whatever over to the new and basically paying Apple to test their product for them. It's a tried and true rule that Macaddicts live by.

    If I worked at Apple... (none / 0) (#7)
    by kdog on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 10:01:37 AM EST
    I'd sell my stock options before this mess really blows up...one of the manufacturers I work with had a massive recall/class action law suit back in 02-03 and still haven't fully recovered financially...though they aren't hip like Apple or as loaded.

    After selling my stock I'd make sure the iphone 5 is a top quality phone first, bells and whistles second.

    Hmmm (none / 0) (#11)
    by squeaky on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 11:43:32 AM EST
    Well actually, kdog, it is more likely a good time to buy the stock, particularly if it dips down some more. It is a super solid company.... maybe when Steve Jobs leaves, time to sell, but now, I think that they will only rise.  

    You're probably right... (none / 0) (#12)
    by kdog on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 12:00:12 PM EST
    thats why I gamble on horses & cards instead of companies:)...though the harder they come, the harder they fall...Apple won't last forever, they'll eventually get too big for their britches like IBM.

    Microsoft (none / 0) (#18)
    by TeresaInSnow2 on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 01:25:23 PM EST
    is also a good solid company and their stock price has been pretty much flat for years.

    "Buy the stock, it will only rise" is just horrible, horrible advice, even if buying the most solid company on earth.  Even though Apple's stock has dipped a bit, look at their chart.  They are inflated to the heavens.  Do they have support at that level?  They're likely already over-valued, in which case, buy the stock and they may dip some more -- especially when the competition pads enter the market!


    They have no hard assets (none / 0) (#19)
    by Untold Story on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 01:52:57 PM EST
    Yes (none / 0) (#24)
    by squeaky on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 05:02:18 PM EST
    You are on record as an Apple hater... quit the rant, and now you are pimping Microsoft.....  hmmmmm....

    I have to wonder why anyone who considers themself a liberal would use an IPhone/Pad, etc.....

    The biggest problem with the iPhone 4 hubbub (none / 0) (#8)
    by Farmboy on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 10:11:41 AM EST
    is the internet echo chamber. Gawker media's blogs are in full anti-Apple FUD mode since California filed theft charges against them. Their rants are repeated and amplified by other tech-gossip blogs (the blood's in the water and everybody wants page hits). Then folks like CR (good intentions but not tech savvy) get into the act and give the phone both their highest marks and no recommendation on the same day. This all leads to a confused public.

    The few tech sites who are qualified to perform scientific tests have said that all phones are sensitive to being touched on their antennas. When they reviewed the iPhone 4 they found the reception is actually better than previous generations of the device.

    What Apple has to overcome is the media-created confirmation bias. There's a perception that the phone doesn't work - regardless of facts. No recall or free case giveaway will help that. I wouldn't want to be in Jobs shoes for the next few months.

    Oh, and not to be nit-picky - although sometimes I am :-) - there's no such thing as an iPhone 4G (looking at the image above).

    That's pretty hilarious, Jeralyn. (none / 0) (#9)
    by Joan in VA on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 11:10:43 AM EST
    Make sure consumers have input? Nah. Apple doesn't roll that way. They announce what they're doing and consumers can like it or lump it. Sure, you can switch to another product but they are betting that you will come back because the replacement just isn't what you really wanted. Apple has spent a lot of time and money giving their products a certain cachet and an intuitiveness that people crave. They have a market that is fairly immune to incursion from copy-cat products and their own screw-ups. Steve Jobs just doesn't care whether he has the most customers, he wants customers who appreciate what Apple offers and he doesn't lose any sleep if what they offer isn't perfect the first time out. He knows we'll get over any inconvenience because we always have.

    Just read Apple's similar to Intel's (none / 0) (#13)
    by Untold Story on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 12:13:14 PM EST
    problem in 90's.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Pentium_FDIV_bug and no recall expected, just a bumper.

    Another link to article on (none / 0) (#15)
    by Untold Story on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 12:22:56 PM EST
    whether Steve Jobs knowingly ignored reception issues with iPhone 4 (not plausible, imo).


    please put urls in (none / 0) (#16)
    by Jeralyn on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 12:38:22 PM EST
    html format or your comments will be deleted as they skew the site. Use the link button at the top of the comment box. Thanks.

    Okay - someone help me out here, please (none / 0) (#20)
    by Untold Story on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 01:55:30 PM EST
    how do I get links into html format - forwarned you that I am new at this -

    love those little squares above and have admired them greatly must admit - but the question before me at the moment is how does one actually use these gorgeous things?

    Put (none / 0) (#21)
    by CoralGables on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 02:05:28 PM EST
    your cursor in the big box, then click on the chain looking little box

    Copy and paste the address into the space that appears, and then near the end right in between the greater than and less than sign..type something like Bloomberg News to describe your link

    Bloomberg News

    and always always hit preview first before you post to be sure you were given sound advice.


    My guess is they'll give out free bumpers (none / 0) (#23)
    by Manuel on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 05:00:08 PM EST
    The protective bumpers are known to reduce the problems.  Total cost will be around 175M.

    That's (none / 0) (#26)
    by CoralGables on Fri Jul 16, 2010 at 08:21:10 AM EST
    the fastest fix and most logical approach financially.

    Let's just hope they don't suggest duct tape.


    apple's own internal guidance (none / 0) (#25)
    by pitachips on Thu Jul 15, 2010 at 07:28:47 PM EST
    to employees was that they were NOT to offer free bumpers. if they dont want to shell out the $1 or $2 dollars that a silicon or plastic bumper costs, what makes you think they would ever consider handing out free phones? the fact is that apple has a fanbase that will shell out hundreds of dollars for a phone even after the antenna issue has been discussed ad nauseum. even after all the studies by different groups, many of them insist there is nothing wrong with the phone and probably have no intention of giving it up. i wouldn't be surprised if an apple spokesman gets up in front of the cameras and tells the world that the "fix" is for users to amputate their left hands lol