BBC reporter Joel Moors gets to meet with Jonathan Ive, but not do an interview. I hope that Apple might say more when they are ready, but history indicates probably not.
Finally, accepting that a sit-down interview wouldn’t happen, I asked if I could have a photo with him.
The proper photographer offered to use my camera, but after a brief effort, I suggested he use my iPhone instead.
“Oh, you’ve got the new one,” said the man who designed it, “how are you finding it?”
“I like it. The battery life is good. The screen’s great. But I am having a bit of an issue with the signal.”
He asked for more. I carried on, “If I hold it in my left hand, the signal drops.”
“But you’ve not had a dropped call?” “No, I haven’t.”
“I could talk about this all day,” he told me, “but I can’t”.
It really feels like there’s more to the antenna issue that meets the eye. Anandtech’s iPhone 4 review finds that even though the signal drops precipitously, the iPhone 4 was still able to keep calls alive. Engadget also reported that they had fewer dropped calls. And yet, I think it is likely that there is also a physical issue with the antenna being exposed, making it more likely to attenuate the signal. There are all kinds of analysis out there, more than I can assimilate. I know that I have been able to reproduce the signal drop, but it hasn’t seemed to affect my usage much. I have trouble with data when the signal is at 1 bar, but those were often areas that I had trouble before, so I’m not sure if the phone can be blamed. On my train commute, there are sections where I can’t get data to go through even when I have 5 bars, so who knows.
Maybe there are improvements that can be made in the software that will alleviate some of the issues caused by the hardware. I hope so. There’s speculation that it has something to do with how fast the phone switches to a stronger signal. I had a strange signal experience this morning. I was reading Instapaper on the subway, with no signal. This is normal, but when I left the subway station, it did not seem to pick up the signal again. I got all the way to my office and still no signal. Flipped to airplane mode and back and got my usual 5 bars.