Apple's CEO Steve Jobs held a press conference today about the iPhone 4 and what Steve referred to as "Antenna-gate". The short story is that you can get a free Bumper or other case sent to you if you purchased an iPhone 4. That offer ends Sept. 30th, and we have no idea if that means they think they'll have a fix (something like a coating over the antenna), or if that's the largest hit to profit margins they're willing to take. If you already bought a Bumper case, you'll receive a refund.
Late next week you'll be able to request a case online. No need to go to an Apple store.
If you purchased an iPhone 4 and aren't happy with it, you can return it within 30 days of purchase for a full refund (no re-stocking fee).
Jobs presented a series of observations and comments before announcing the free case. These include:
- All smartphones drop bars if you hold them a certain way (he singled out the Droid Eris, BlackBerry 9700 and Samsung Omnia II in his demo).
- He claims that only 0.55% of iPhone 4 buyers have contacted Apple about the death grip.
- Return rates are at 1.7% vs. the iPhone 3GS' 6.0%. Of course, there are virtually no iPhone 4 smartphones in stock, so returning for an exchange isn't easy (we tried 2x and had no luck).
- Apple cares, even if only a supposed small percentage are having reception issues with the iPhone 4.
- Yesterday's iOS 4.0.1 update changed the bar display and also fixed an Exchange sync bug that had been hammering Exchange servers. The proximity sensor issue will be addressed in the next iOS update.
- Apple can't make enough Bumper cases for everyone, so they'll offer some other cases as well.
-------------------- Lisa Gade Editor in Chief, MobileTechReview
Steve Jobs iPhone 4 Press Conference: you get a free case