Apple CEO Steve Jobs held a special press conference on Friday in Cupertino, California to address the month-long discussion of the iPhone 4’s defective antenna design, which he described as ‘Antennagate.’ (video available here). Defiant and unbending, Jobs spent the better part of 15 minutes pushing back at critics of the iPhone 4, claiming “this has been blown so out of proportion that it is incredible.”
Jobs claimed that the antenna reception issue is one inherent to ALL smartphones, offering data and statistics to show that the iPhone 4’s antenna reception was comparable to that of other brands, or even the iPhone 3GS.
“The data supports the fact that the iPhone 4 is the best smartphone in the world,” Mr. Jobs said. “And there is no ‘Antennagate.’ There is a challenge to the entire industry to improve antenna performance so that there are no weak spots.”
Despite spending considerable time in a defensive posture, claiming no problem existed, Jobs eventually shifted tactic, and began describing the need for a fix.
“Now when we look at this data, it’s hard to escape the conclusion that there is a problem, but that problem is affecting a very small number of users. I get emails saying the phone works perfectly, and they can’t understand what this is all about. So we think it’s affecting a small batch, but it has to do with inherent problems in smartphones. But we want all of our users to be happy.”
As a result, Apple will be offering free bumper cases to all iPhone 4 owners starting this week and until September 30th. Additionally, those who have already bought Apple’s bumper will receive a full refund. Customers who have purchased third-party cases, though, will be uncompensated, and its still unclear what will happen after September 30th.
Jobs also rebuffed a Bloomberg report that Apple was made aware of the defective Antenna early in the design process, calling the story “crock.” Nonetheless, Jobs failed to state when they became fully aware of a potential defect.
Near the end of his presentation, Jobs explained that it took 22 days to respond to this issue because they did not want to simply slap a band-aid on the problem. Instead, it seems, Apple is content to simply slap a bumper on it.
If you own an iPhone 4, and are interested in participating in our lawsuit against Apple and AT&T, please email me at email@example.com. I look forward to hearing from you.