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Apple Sued Over iPhone 4’s Dodgy Antenna


Apple is already facing no less than three class action lawsuits launched by iPhone 4 users irate at the smartphone’s inability to function properly unless held in a Jobs-approved manner.

Three lawsuits alleging unfair business practices and false and misleading advertising by Apple have surfaced, with two filed in San Francisco each attempting to secure expensive class action status.

One of the lawyers filing in San Francisco puts it thus:

“Apple’s sale of the iPhone with this unannounced defect, assuming Apple’s prior knowledge of the defect, constitutes misrepresentation and fraud.

In omitting to disclose the defect in the iPhone 4, Apple perpetrated a massive fraud upon hundreds of thousands of unsuspecting customers.”

This lawsuit is demanding a free $30 “bumper,” a rubber casing coincidentally sold by Apple which happens to coincidentally prevent the signal loss issues, for every customer who pre-ordered the phone.

Another separate suit filed in Maryland is out for cash:

“[Apple] actively suppressed and concealed the fact that the iPhone 4 could not be held in a manner consistent with the normal usage of wireless communication devices.”

Critics have decried Apple’s “arrogant” reaction, with it dismissing complaints and telling users to hold their phones properly and stop wasting Steve Jobs’ valuable time.

Leave a Comment


  • Anonymous says:

    It’s your own dumb ass faults for not holding the phone right, you dum………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………wait, im not holding my phone right.

  • Just a matter of generations. With the rush of releasing a brand new iPhone every year, it is now Apple which is tripping in this business.

    Terrible. I shall leave the Apple religion.

  • Anonymous says:

    I’d better sue Nokia for my mother’s phone suffering from the same problem– Oh wait, SC. I forgot, everyone else is perfect and we’d better devote five articles to every Apple product. Obsess much?

  • Anonymous says:

    Look at the look on MrJobs face, he already tried using it and it wouldn’t connect while he was on alive demonstration. His face says it all. Like the OnionNews ‘Sony Box Thing’ “work you ps work”. Its all over his face.

  • Barbarian of Gor says:

    The best solution to any problem is to prevent said problem from occuring.

    The problem is big giant companies that still cling to old business models that led the world to financial ruin. They need to be broken up, bled dry, and the “Market” actually “Freed” for others to adapt to.

    So do NOT buy one of those things.
    Try to discourage other people from buying them.

    You see, the technology’s there, we just need to create more of a market for the “No Contract” phones to expand and absorb. The less money spent on iVOMIT, the more money potentially available for, say the SAME “Slave made goods flom amiable venelable Cathay” manufacturer to make a rip-off of their device and sell it at 1/4 the price with monthly unlimited no-contract deals -and- no sh-t with grotesque DRM and proprietary stores.

    • Tex_Arcana says:

      Becomes somewhat questionable in light of Apple being the alternative to many near-monopolies.

      But I agree that fiscal discipline is a better solution than postpurchase bitching.

  • master-evil says:

    I always wonder what people say in the iphone sure it had apps and some cool features other then that they had a hell of a lot better phones out there back on topic: Thank you steve for pulling the bill gate move, microsoft must be proud of apple.

  • I have yet to have a call dropped with my phone no matter how I have held it where I was lucky not to have a dropped call on my 3G. I have seen bars go down though but it has never effected the actual use of the phone. For me the phone has had much better reception than my old 3G so I cant complain.

  • Tex_Arcana says:

    Hey, this (Apple Product) has functional differences from another product made by someone else! How negligent of them to not make sure it operated like a non-apple product!

    …Now give me some money, so I can buy 3 more.

    Seriously though, this is why you don’t buy things at launch from ANYONE. It’s not the company’s fault you have more disposable income than common sense.

    • Anonymous says:

      Except the way people hold a cell phone makes this drop signal and they know this, which is why they also sell the fix. What a shock. And the one lawsuit is trying to sue to get the ‘fix’ not money. That’s how it should be. usausausa!

    • “It’s not the company’s fault you have more disposable income than common sense.”

      Your argument astounds me… would you care to develop it a bit further?

      If it’s not the company’s fault for releasing something defective who does it belong to then? The consumer?! Are you serious?!

      Perhaps if they had added a page on the manual explaining this was an intended “feature” I could resonate, but as it stands you are just passing as arrogant and stupid as Jobs with one liners like this.

      • Tex_Arcana says:

        Don’t get me wrong, I think they should find a way to fix it, and I think they will. But not in a way that’ll retroactively apply to the older models.

        It’s almost a law of the tech industry that anything sold at launch will have problems. Nerds learn this principle. Casual consumers never do.

        Note that if this was a safety issue (the phone drops your calls, and then electrocutes you) it would be reasonable to expect a lawsuit, and a retroactive fix. But that’s simply not the case.

        • You speak the proven truth. There’s the alpha test, the beta test, which can sometimes include the public or select groups… and then there’s the unspoken test, the first product release. Apple finds TONS of bugs in their first releases, as do many others, which they then whittle down pretty well in unannounced hardware revisions down the road.

          …though I don’t see how they’d do that here unless they clearcoat the metal frame with an insulator of some type. The big issue seems to be that the two strips of metal are antennas tuned to their respective frequency ranges, and when you bridge them with your hand, they’re still antennas, but not at all optimized ones.

  • Anonymous says:

    As shown on some sites on how to NOT hold the iPhone4… is how many of us HOLD our phone.

    But usually you have to hold the phone tightly to cause signal loss… but also heard that normal phone cupping can also cause this problem.

    A simple thing as putting a coating over the antenna could have resolved this.

    • SpideyPHL says:

      Agreed. Note, for once, that I haven’t seen punitive damages listed on either of these lawsuits, but rather a demand to give the fix away. That’s how a class action is supposed to work, not like the PS3 Linux one that just demanded money and not to restore Linux functionality.

    • Anonymous says:

      i really would expect a company the size of apple to know better than to make a phone which loses signal all the time
      thats not a severe bug that somehow slipped through
      its a case a epic engineering fail

      • Anonymous says:

        The majority of their testing was apparantly done in a special casing making it look like the iPhone 3g. This like the bumper prevents the issue.

        Yeah not the best way to test a product it seems..

      • Sandalphon says:

        Unfortunately for the person suing for justice, the lawyer still demands pay for his services in the form of actual cash. Definitely more than $30.

        My hat goes off to this person, but understand that few people are willing or able to part with that much money just to teach a bad company a lesson and get the same solution they could have gotten for $30 instead of $300.

      • As much as I hate the person suing for cash, I still like the fact that there is somebody else out there who is actually looking out for the consumers.

        Kudos to the lawyer suing for the free “bumper” for all the iPhone owners.

        The one suing for cash can just go to hell (with almost every other lawyer; at least they’ll have companionship with each other).

        • still my you cant have known before it came out stands

          its your own fault for being a fuck up and buying it without reading about it, and its flaws.

          however a free fix could be given to day 1 buyers too, because i assume a vast majority of them camped for it.

          but here is how i buy electronics. i google the flaws and i search for user reviews. it takes all of 5 minutes to find any thing and everything.

          ic you cant take 5 minutes to fucking google something than you dont deserve a free replacement. they are fucking lucky i even would allow them a cheap replacement.

        • Anonymous says:

          For someone who hates iphones so much you sure do fail to understand the concept of the idiocy involved with those who love the phone.

          There are probably millions of people who didn’t pre-order the phone yet still bought one within the first week and had no knowledge what so ever about the defect.

          No matter how much you try and argue to point, apple fucked up and if one set of people deserve a free fix so does everyone else who bought the broken phone.

        • Anonymous says:

          The lawsuit for cash is perfectly legitimate, it allows everyone in that class action to be reimbursed for the fine they’ll be hit with when they prematurely terminate their AT&T contract while returning the iPhone4 for a refund. The people who get the $30 strap for free? They’ll just have to pray no other glaring flaw comes up and forces them to go into yet another lawsuit.

        • look if you were in the market for an iphone you have internet and did research. i don’t give a fuck about the phone but i head of the signal loss within 1 week of launch, and honestly if i, someone who despises apple heard of the signal loss issue, than everyone in the market for one should have too.

          if you want an iphone and you dont have the Internet, there is something fucked up with that, and if you looked up iphone4 on google, without moving the screen down there is signal loss news.

          if you are too fucking stupid to read that you don’t get free shit or pay.

          people who preorderd had NO FUCKING CLUE
          people who bought it week 1 because of hype bought it before news of signal problems fully broke.

          they all get free bumpers, but the early adopters, within week 1, need a separate fee for the iphone4 revision 2, because of the chance they knew and still got it. and honestly you are talking about a 500-800$ phone here, a 50$ – 100$ for a revision 2 replacement is fairly cheap.

        • Anonymous says:

          Indeed. Why should people who didn’t pre-order and don’t spend every minute of their life trolling the internet for anything apple related to pop up have to spend more money just because apple fucked up.

        • Anonymous says:

          and fuck over everybody else who bought the phone. I read about the signal loss on the internet, maybe somebody didn’t and bought the phone after the ‘first week’. What now? “Cover” my ass.

        • sorry but class actions dont work that way.

          yea you get money but everyone involved gets it too, the over all pay out could be millions but you only see 100.

          the lawsuit we should see is for a free bumper and a free upgrade to the revised version without this signal loss for free for those who preorderd, and for a small fee for the people who bought first week.

          and by small fee i mean 50-100$

          this way it covers those who didnt know, and those who got it before signal loss was a big deal