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< >

Poll: Can you replicate Apple's reported "Bold 9700 antenna issues" on your device? I can't...

By Kevin Michaluk on 16 Jul 2010 04:35 pm EDT
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 Apple Propaganda

* Update: Well, after a few thousand quick votes it seems some 86% of us BlackBerry Bold 9700 users think El Jobso's evidence is a big pile of BS. As for the 14% who think it may hold water, well, I'm sure some of those must be legit... but the numbers speak for themselves. Sorry Steve - it seems you became part of the media you like to beat up on with this one... making a story where one doesn't actually exist. *

If you're on the internet today anywhere near a tech website, you've probably heard and/or seen posts surrounding Apple's iPhone 4 press conference that focused on the hoopla surrounding the device's apparent antenna issues (check out TiPb.com's full coverage). According to Apple, well, there are none. Phones aren't perfect. And furthermore, the BlackBerry Bold 9700 they tested out apparently had antenna issues of its own too.

Apple's test? Go to an area where you have full bars while holding the phone gingerly, then change that loose grip to a bit more of a death grip. They show off a video where the Bold 9700's signal basically drops to one bar, until the death grip is released (click the image above to jump over to Apple.com and watch the whole video). 

Since seeing the press conference, I've been trying to duplicate their results and I simply cannot do it. My Bold 9700's antenna kicks ass from what I can tell (disclaimer: I'm not on AT&T, but rather Rogers, so maybe Rogers kick a bit of ass too for signal coverage). I either get no drop in coverage, or after realllllly covering up the phone i see a temporary drop of a couple of bars, but only for a second or two, and then the bars come back up to basically full. RIM has been building radios for a lonnnng time. I'm guessing it senses the sudden drop in signal strength and automatically ramps up the power to increase it to full bars again. I'm no engineer though, so I hope somebody smarter than me comes forward to shed more light on this (hopefully RIM does).

In the meantime, if you have a BlackBerry Bold 9700, put it to the test. Can you duplicate Apple's results? Or are you seeing what I'm seeing... no issues at all. Cast your vote and sound off in the comments. I'm sure this isn't the last we've heard of the new smartphone antenna debate.

Reader comments

Poll: Can you replicate Apple's reported "Bold 9700 antenna issues" on your device? I can't...

258 Comments

i can duplicate that problem with tmobile. i went from full bars and dropped two bars gripping it exactly like the phone. so apple/jobs is right it does happen on any phone, its just not as drastic as the iphone. so everyone should calm down, just cause a bb was shown as an example to something that happens to just about all phones

I had the same thing happen on my tmo 8900, went from 4 bars to 1 bar. When I removed my hand it went back to 4 bars. So I am sure it is an issue with many phones.

I have an 8900 with Rogers and I don't experience any loss of bars no matter how I hold the phone. Same with my 9700 on Rogers. There's a reason why Steve Jobs did not show this live. It's because it can't be replicated like the problem with the iPhone. Also, a phone may drop a bar or two but there's a difference between dropping bars and dopping a call.

So if it happens to all phones, why is it such a big deal with the iPhone4?

When the 9700 first came out, I never saw a negative review saying that if you hold the phone in the wrong position, the signal drops.

So while there may be certain cases where signal drops on a Blackberry, but I've never heard of a 'correct way' to hold it.

Yeah, I totally agree there. I went from a BB to an iphone, back to the BB and not even going to try the new ios4. I was one of the very first to get an iphone when it came out and I had to swap it out 3 times. Blackberry for life!

My wife and I always used BB's to communicate, but when iphone 3g came she wanted it. So she went ahead and bought it not even 3 months into it. She went back to Blackberry.

And that's what it comes down to, the lack of effort from Apple to really do thorough testing and make sure their phone can do advanced stuff - as well as the everyday basics.

I, myself, started on Blackberry, switched to the iPhone when it first came out, and then switched back to Blackberry.

When the 3G came out, I gave Apple another shot and bought one. Like the first time, I switched back to Blackberry and have not even considered going back.

Next on my upgrade agenda: Blackberry 9800

I have a 9700 on AT&T in Lexington, KY. I never have a single problem with coverage, full 3G all of the time. My girlfriend has an iPhone on AT&T, Dad has a 9000 on AT&T and boss has an Incredible (previously a Storm) on Verizon. The only person I EVER experience dropped calls with is my girlfriend...and I think it's safe to say it's all because of her iPhone. When these drops happen, my 9700 is still connected to the call while hers says "call failed" or whatever message the iPhone gives her.

i cant even get the bars on an iPhone4 to drop let alone a BB 9700
i blame the network, jobs shouldnt = say `it happens to all phones` when thats just BS. no ammount of marketing spin can save apple from the state of a network.

Same here, my signal does not drop, if I cover all I can with both hands, the signal drops 1-2 bars and then after 2 seconds go up again to five and stay there. When I remove my hand the signal stays there.

I haven't tested it on a Bold but I can certainly say this does NOT happen on my Storm2 on Verizon.

I've tried covering the whole phone and one bar may drop but as you said, it goes right back up to 5.

No case here either.

Same here. I dont have a BOLD, ut i do have an 8900, and no thanks to Apple igniting the spark for me attempting to "death grip" my phone in 100 different ways, I have found a way to go from my normal 3-4 bars to 5!!

That was such a fail at a low blow by Apple.

I found that if I hold the 9700 tight with 2 hands and both of my palms in the bottom corners of the phone I will drop coverage all the way down. That isn't the same way Apple said they were able to do it, and I would never hold my phone like this and use it at the same time, but I was able to drop my signal. Nothing like just touching an iPhone 4 though.

I cupped the bottom of my phone in my palm and used my other hand to squeeze the bottom sides and got my signal to drop to 3 bars consistently. When I let go with the other hand it went back to normal. I then tried it again 30 seconds later but I couldn't repeat it. So the problem is exists, but nowhere near the level of the iPhone 4.

I agree... He's full of shit. Not only can I NOT replicate this, but I put my phone in my pocket, then sat pillows on it for 30 seconds. (Bored) When I pull it back out, it's at 3 3G bars, and promptly jumps back up to 4. (On this particular theme, 4 bars = full coverage)

Just goes to show - and yes, I do own one - the I4 was built as a media and game tool first, phone second.

We're going out and intentionally covering the phone and holding it in a way you NEVER would in normal operation - I also found that my BBs drop coverage if I submerge them in soy sauce. The huge key difference is that the I4 has this issue when users hold the phone in a NORMAL, PHONE-LIKE MANNER. That's just crazy.

Mine stays full 3G. If I squeezed any harder I'd be picking up pieces of my 9700 off the floor. Apple is sofa king red tar did.

I have to really cup the whole thing tightly go get it to drop down at all and even then it goes straight back up.

Anyway, simply holding the phone and having the signal drop and purposely blocking it are two entirely different things...

he is right if you got a low signal hold your phone at top and bottom and it will shoot up hold it normal on sides and it goes to 1 bar on mine if i had a video camera i would record it and show everyone

If I hold the bottom half of the phone tightly and wait 5 - 10 seconds, the bars will drop.

thats a standard grip, it probably happens when not using a case and you never notice it. 1. because people don't over analyze every aspect of a BB as they do a iphone. 2. the drop is not drastic as the iphone. 3.Apple is correct when they say it happens on all phones, and its true they were not lying.

Squeezing tightly is never a standard grip. I don't use cases on my BB, and my I4 is case-less as well. This is not an issue "BB fanboys" brought up - it's an issue iPhone users are reporting. I'm not doubting that many phones will drop a bit of coverage when you attempt to squeeze water from them, but merely holding the phone is a comfortable, phone call-making manner should not degrade the reception.

It's clear that the thinking process started and stopped with users playing on the phone like they do the demo phones in the store, i.e. Holding the phone in a landscape view to play on the web, or just playing games, oblivious to the antenna and reception.

the examples apple should made since to me. they showed popular phones with bars dropping. if a BB wasn't shown, people would probably start talking about how that would never happen with a BB. When in fact it'll happen with just about any phone where your bare hand touches the antenna area. The demo was just to show it happens, but not as much as an iphone drop but the fact that all phones lose bars. And to me that's a fair demonstration. They were not trying to make RIM or Motorola look bad it was just an example with the popular phones out right now, which is fair in my eyes.

that doesn't excuse apples iphone4 from dropping so much that calls fail, though.

No, actually, it's not fair because it's not true. If it was true, he would have shown a live demonstration and not a stupid picture.

Nice Comment.... Remember...they do have a proximity sensor problem that could be the reason for most of the dropped calls and they are working on a fix for that but nobody is taking that into consideration.

All he did was put on a nice presentation and say "everyone's does it, so does ours, so don't blame us!" But of course any other phone they show is going to do it too! Duh! For the 95% of the masses that use apple because its the "cool thing", they are going to take his speech for face value, and hold on to that belief.

For the rest of us, who actually understand that you always need to "mind your sources" (yes, we all learned that in 6th grade for writing reports) you'll look past his bs. It was an innovative idea to put the antenna on the outside, but clearly, they all idea people and not engineers.

Oh well, bring on the duct tape i guess. I'm sticking with my 9550!

Good stick to your 9550 you weren't going to switch anyway. I have a 9700 and a iPhone4 and couldn't be happier. Both are awesome phones in their own ways.

I remember when the LG Shine came out and reviewers tried to say the same thing about losing signal strength when holding the phone, due to the antennae being in the base of the phone. BlackBerrys don't even have the all aluminum housing of that phone (I couldn't accomplish the signal drop on the Shine) so I feel this is a marketing angle and nothing more. If someone wants to send me a bold, I'll be more than happy to try it, as it is...I'm still squeezing the last drops out of my 8310. Mortgage, household bills and married life responsibilities come first. WAAA!

I just tried giving my BB9700 a good firm grip with 1 and 2 hands and no drop at all on my T-Mobile.

When is RIM going to get off it's ass and attack Apple? It's bad enough they have yet to release OS 6 or any ground breaking devices in close to 2 years. They should at least announce the 9800 or they are going to fall even further behind. What about the Storm 3?

Then they let Apple smash them on stage... WTF?

that was a total load of b.s by Steve Jobs cutting up BlackBerry 9700

my 9700 does not lose any signal what so ever! when I use the death grip

Try as I might I just can't make my Bold 9700 drop more than 1 bar: and that is with covering nearly the whole phone in a 'death grip'.

I'm on Vodafone UK and I've never dropped a call either.

It's quite funny that Apple's defence is that 'all smart phones are rubbish, so that makes it OK that ours is also' LOL

Also I think that the very fact that we have to TRY to do this (with little success) says enough on it's own.

I have a storm 2. I have taken it apart as well. the antenna in my bb is molded into the top plastic that cover the earphone. there is two pressure contacts that connect the antenna to the phone. its not a rigid piece of plastic. If you squeeze hard enough you could possibly disturb those pressure contacts which would decrease your signal. Just a thought

Its and ATT problem. He should bring the Iphone overnto VZW and then we will test out the deathgrip......................

how can you say its an at&t problem when any other smartphone on at&t passes the deathgrip test. Its so obviously an iphone problem. Bring that phone to verizon and you would have the same problem. Verizon is not the all powerful fix everything company. Your an idiot for thinking it is.

There's an app for that.
I couldn't get it to drop on my 8330m either; I even used the alt+nmll trick to show db rather than bars. No matter how I hold it, signal doesn't drop.

I had a 9700 on T-Mobile and now I have the Storm2 on Verizon. They have a "grip" but not a "Death grip".

That's pretty low by Apple!
I have tried to this on my bold and it still has full bars on 3G.
I'm with Telus in the greater Toronto area and their network is new.
I hold my phone in 2 maybe 3 different positions and it works fine so I have no complaints!
I agree with the person on here who said Apple is media & games 1st and phone 2nd!
Sorry apple if I want media & games on the go I will use my PSP!
Love my BB Bold 97700!

I'll break my phone into peices. I seriously had to stop because I felt I might crush the phone, even though historically these things are alot tougher then they look. I got a month old 9700 from T-mobile and no matter what the bars won't drop, I even attempted while on the status screen, I kept a constant -70 dBm, and my battery currently is at 30%, which isn't low but isn't strong either. Steve Jobs will you come to every Blackberry owner's house to show us what we're doing wrong? Oh that's right we got the better fruit :)

Does loose some signal when held. How much, depends on how you hold it.

Out of 5 possible bars, when sitting on my desk, the phone typically shows 5 [occasionally 4], which equates to aprox -80dBm.

Pick the phone up gingerly [an 'Apple approved' type of grip], and I might drop to -81 to -84dBm. The last time I tested this [earlier today] that was not enough to drop any 'bars' on the signal meter, though occasionally one might be lost.

Use the grip Apple shows heavily degrading the 9700's signal and little if any change in dBm is seen, same for the bars...typically still shows 5, though is more likely to drop to 4.

If I cup the phone both hands, completely covering the perimeter along with much of the front and back, the signal drops as low as -95 to -97dBm, which typically equates to 3 or even 2 bars.

i bet apple used a cell phone jammer to make the bars on the 9700 to drop like that.. i don't see it happening from the "death grip."

I've had my Bold 9700 since November since it first came out on Vodafone UK (and before a lot of folk because a friend of my worked for them)

I tried this out and holding it in the same way suggested on the Apple did make me lose AT MOST 2 Bars. The only issue is I would NEVER normally hold my phone this way and 2 bars is nothing really.

So sorry to Apple but forcing an "antennuation" doesn't count. And to go from saying there is no problem and releasing an update that calculates signal strength differently to changing your story and giving an explanation of why it does actually happen and the 'death grip' is real is probably the dumbest thing ever.

Saw the press release and tried right away. Was able to achieve no such result, nor have I ever noticed such a result previously. I think they (Apple) are doctoring their results by using models with prosthetic limbs lined in tin foil.

The bars on the home screen may not drop, but signal does in fact decrease. Go to 'advanced options', and 'status.' You'll see the dBm number change when you grip the phone the way Jobs did. The problem with the iPhone 4 is that it's TOO sensitive to that type of grip - more so than other phones.

But, I can get my phone to drop a bit. I'm left handed. On the desk I am -80, holding naturally how I'd talk it is -90.

I never talk on it though, and holding how I'd use it for mobile data stuff it is at about -85.

/shrugs.

I don't need the "death grip" to drop from 5 bars to 1 on the Bold 9000. Similar to the report above, however, it moves back up to at least 4 bars within seconds.

The death grip has an effect on my 9700!!! But who holds a precious BB like they're trying to suffocate a newborn child??? But seriously AT&T...WTF?!

this is unbelievable. I tried everything apple said they did on the 9700. my signal remain same. no changes. even went to the basement of my friends house hoping this will replicate what apple showed us using film manipulation in a controlled atmoshpere.my 9700 signal bars remained same. no issues whatsoever. apple should be ashamed for trying to take another manufacturer down with them because they are having issues with their own product. quite a shame that steve job will stoop this low, all in the name of trying to remain on top. all the things he accused Microsoft of sometime back is what he is trying to do now. but, I have news for him. Rim is here to stay and there is nothing apple can do about it!!!!

why? all they were doing is proving that all/most phones experience bar dropping when the antenna area is touch. they showed it on the droid too. And it's "true". BB users aren't very bright because I've seen a few forum post and have responded to a few where people are attempting the grip with there BB in a case. WTF?

Apple just showed that attenuation of the signal happens in all phones when the antennas are covered by hands. What Jobs didn't want to talk about is the flaw that bridging of the two EXPOSED antennas on the iPhone 4 causes signal LOSS.

Using a Hedone theme with a numerical signal strength meter. All I have to do is lay the phone face up in the palm of my hand and I can see it drop from a 10 to between a 2-4. Setting it back on the desk causes it to return to a 10 within a few seconds. I wish I had a camera, so I could post this.

Of course, I'm on AT&T...

I have an iPhone 4, I got it on launch day. This phone is awesome and I enjoy it. Shortly after I got it I hear about this whole antenna thing I try it and what happens? Absolutely nothing. The antenna problem doesn't effect me nor does it effect anyone I know. I strongly believe this whole thing got blown waaaaay out of proportion

Yea the antenna problem is real but the only time I see a difference is in areas where the service is shitty to begin with.

Thats why most of you probably can't find the "deathgrip" on your Bold 9700 because it's the same thing if you have good service nothing will change.

One more thing to note is that Apple did mess up on showing how many bars you actually have, theres a chart on tipb.com which can explain peoples drastic drops in bars while doing the "deathgrip". An update was put out last night though and it's all fixed up

When I'm web browsing, texting or doing anything along those lines I hold it in my left hand. When I'm on the phone I hold it on my right which I've always done. The actual "deathgrip" way of holding the phone seems pretty extreme to me, maybe I'm the only one that doesn't tightly grip my phone while I'm holding it.

Regardless I have no problems and I haven't met anyone that really does (which could just be the great AT&T service here in So Cal.)

I use a Storm 2 on Verizon, and I can replicate this issue. I don't need to use a deathgrip, just hold it lightly, cupped in one hand, and the signal will drop. Granted, I don't get the 4 bar drop that was demonstrated with the 9700 (It only drops 1 bar), but it does weaken the signal slightly.

...no matter what! The only time my reception change is when I'm on the move and enter different infrastrucure from 3G to EDGE, to GPRS connection, etc!

...the Bold 9700 simply rocks!

JMD
...Have Bold Will Travel~

I'm on Rogers with my 9700 and I've spent the last 5 minutes clutching the phone in a variety of manners with one and both hands. Lo and behold, no change in my full 3G service.

I type this on my MacBook, so I'm not entirely anti-Apple, but this iPhone nonsense is entire out of hand. Own up to mistakes, Jobs!

Everyone always talk about the iPhone killer - i'm still waiting for the blackberry killer (nothing in sight) - nothing against Apple love their MacBook Pro line used it for years - I think they approached their iPhone line of products just like their Mac line of products. With the mac line of products it's 7% of the consumer market they have to please - it's a lot bigger and harder when your trying to be the best phone on the planet, perhaps work on the phone part first then worry about the 100 bazzillon apps. Just my 2 cents.

O.o I gripped my 9700 and u can notice a loss of signal strength. The bars starts dancing but it never drops below two bars..

If I'm in a low signal area, holding the phone at all affects my data rate. Anytime I'm in a low signal area and want data, I lay it flat on the table/desk and don't touch the sides. Works every time.

No matter what i do ie hold it lightly or in the death grip i just cannot get any bars to drop...even if im in a low signal area...the radio on the 9700 is top notch...it always holds the signal for me.

For the record i have the iphone4 here in the UK and it easily drops signal from 5 to no signal in a matter of seconds...pathetic really.

Shame on apple, resorting to manipulating other manufactures phones to try and convince the isheeps that the iphone 4 does not have a hardware flaw. I have 3 different BlackBerry and I have not been able to replicate what apple did in the press briefing.

Apple PR department must have been busy planning how to make out the this is a common problem with all smartphone. Apple must had consulted their in house engineers on how to rig the tests for the other phones. Instead of asking their engineers to resolve the real hardware issue of the iphone 4

If there is no hardware issues, then why is Apple issuing free bumpers for the iphone 4?

Come on apple own up and say that the iphone 4 is flawed and come up with a solution, don't use below the belt tactics! I can smell BS from the Apple Press Briefing!

I have a 8530, before almost hugging my BB, I start with-91 dBm signal, when I hold it with 2 hands it goes up to -110, what is that mean? Does mean that the BB will get better signal using a case?... And Mr job I don't drop as many calls as u trying to say to clear your mistake.

I always knew the iPhone is crap. There's NOTHING that compares to a BB ! Period !
And yet, to proof my Storm is better I stuck it between my ass cheeks and was still able to hold a conversation via my bluetooth ! I talked to my Mom for 35 minutes until I told her where the phone was - at that moment she hung up, LOL !

Not a single dropped bar when I hold my 9700 the way they show it and I am on AT&T in Las Vegas. I think I might have even gained a bar holding it that way. Point is, the video is a lie. The thing I would like to know though, is that they say in an area with a weak signal the bars can drop if held like they show. If they were really in a weak signal area, why would the phone have full bars on 3G?

Using one hand, I was able to get the signal to drop from -80dBm to -87dBm.

Using both hands, pancaking the phone between both hands, it dropped from -80dBm to -97dBm. (5 bars to 3 bars)

So yes, theres a drop in signal if you cover the phone (duh!) but you have to purposely try to make the signal drop. The worst part about Jobs's "it happens to all phones" is that the external antennae was supposed to be a revolutionary improvement on signal, not keeping on par.

I held my Bell 9700 so tight I thought it would break, it dropped one bar. But I would never, ever hold it like that! All this tells me is I was holding the phone so tight that something inside was doing something it was not meant to do. Let's just own up to our own issues Mr Jobs instead of trying to point out others.

I generally get 4-5 bars at work and at home. I tried to replicate this issue, and I thought I might be. It seemed that I could toggle 1 bar by changing my grip, dropping from 5 to 4, easily explained by Apple's "The bars aren't accurate" excuse. Then it simply stopped happening at all. I tried to replicate it with my my Commuter on and off, and I could not. I set my signal meter to dBm, stayed around -70.

I covered every part of the device with both hands, sandwich-style, cupped around the entire back of the device, width-wise across the bottom and keypad, nogo. Stayed right at -70dBm.

Oh, and my battery was only at 40% when I tried this.

Psychologists probably have a name for what Jobs is trying to do. Its total bullshit. The arrogance of Apple amazes me. One day, its misguided customers will rebel and the whole iphone ieverything will hit the buffers. I hope the folk at Waterloo take due notice. After one dog like the Storm 1 they can't afford any mistakes either.

Now, this is desperate... but also flattering in a way, Apple picked out the best brand out there to make a comparison. If only their claims were true... I hope RIM are keeping their lawyers busy as we speak.

I can make my Tour drop from four bars to two by giving it a death grip. Pretty much, dropping from -94db to -104db, but I am also away from cell towers (and in a gully). So, in areas with weak signal, it can happen.

I think what has interested me in all of this is that similar drops have been shown on the i4 with just one finger across the antenna splitter. It doesn't take a death grip to make the i4 do that. It takes a full-hand grip on my Tour to drop a bar or two.

I have a bold 9700 from tmobile, unfortunately i can duplicate the problem, i was hoping it was bull, im going to try it elsewhere.

I love Apple to death and will buy Macs until the day I die, but I cannot get the bars to even flicker. In fact, my dBm is at -70 and does not move at all, regardless if holding it in one hand, or completely engulfing the phone in both hands. This is all while it's in a case.

Using T-Mobile in Columbus, OH. Can't get it to drop even 1 bar, much less down to only 1 bar. Tried the death grip, covering all sides with both hands as well as the whole phone (with enough space to see my signal). Still nothing!

Okay, at home my bars drop; but only if I cover all 4 edges with both hands. Simply doing a death grip does not affect signal at all.

Tried it on my T-Mobile BB9700 and nothing happened,not even one bar dropped, then tried a friend's BB9700 on at&t and held it the same way, it did the exact same bar dropping as the one apple showed. i guess its an at&t thing and i'm in Houston by the way

So,when I do the Vulcan death grip on my Tour, the most it will drop is one bar, if that. When I completely cover the phone with both hands, the lowest the bars will go is down to three, no less. Jobs is a pompous ass clown who will not admit that there's a flaw in his precious iPhone. Admit when there's a problem, and people will respect you like a man. POS.

Do you know why your Blackberry won't produce the same results? Because it's not an overpriced, under-teched P.O.S IPhone....Thats why!!

ok so i tested my 9700(AT$T) and when i held it death-grip style i did see a reduction in signal strength...but once i tested it in the same way on an actual phone call i did NOT loose signal strength

**tests conducted with full 3G signal strength

i just tested this on my 9700 and i did lose signal! but then again on the 9700 i have to grab it in a strange uncomfortable way in order to make it happen. on a ip4 you hold it almost normally.

Some people are trying to do this 'death grip' thing - I'd EXPECT a phone to lose signal if you're holding it in that fashion. The original issue was that many (not all) I4 owners were having drastic reception issues while doing nothing more than holding their phone regularly. If your area has shitty coverage, that's one thing. Full coverage when the phone is sitting down, but 1 bar or so when you touch/hold it is something completely different.
*ducks incoming fire* I actually like the new iPhone, but this issue - and this latest press conference - are shit from the most upset-stomach-havingest bull on record...

I think it's kinda hilarious that rather than admit to the problem and helps fix it, they deflect the problem onto RIM. Classic case of getting caught red handed getting into trouble and then snitching out someone else so you don't get into trouble by yourself. Besides no one I know death grips their phone while using it even when they have an angry call. So I just hope that they can fix the issue and not try to get anyone else under the radar when they're having issues.

Managed to replicate the "death grip", except there are a few conditions for it to work XD

1. You need to have bad signal to begin with
2. You have to grip it reaaaally tight and make sure the palm of your hand is also covering the back of the device

And then... all it does is drop a few bars and then up again XD

On my Storm2, I could replicate this more easily.. but it's on a different network with less coverage where I live :P

Conclusion: The "death grip" does affect my BB's, but it would never happen under "normal" circumstances XD

PS: at full strength with really good coverage, I could NOT replicate this on my Bold 9700 or Storm2.. not a single drop in bars.. not even in dB reading :P

I have a Samsung Jack on AT&T and couldn't repeat the problem....complete BS....amazing how people STILL say its the network...when it's obviously the phone...

Not a bold, but yes, if I grip my 9550 with my left hand my signal drops by about 50% at times. So for us to say that we are superior, that would be a lie.

Telus / Canada / Dartmouth

I can replicate it on my storm 1 on verizon...I have done it about 6 times and still degrades signal by about 3 bars, or more

I can get my 9700 on Rogers in Medicine Hat to move from -70 to -81 dBm if I use both hands at the same time to death grip the top and bottom.. even that's not enough to make it lose a bar, though a tiny bit of signal is lost. I have no idea how Apple managed to get those results on their 'test 9700' without it being BS.

I just tried this on my 9000. I death gripped it and it shot from -70 to -91 before bouncing back to -70 2 seconds later. Steve Jobs fail.

We ALL know that this CAN happen to ALL phones...

BUT, not on the same level that the iPhone does.

I have a 9700 on o2 - UK, never had an issue, ive tried to hold the phone with both hands and I drop 1 bar.

No matter where I am, 1 bar.

I really hope RIM and all other manufacturers give a huge back lash to these false comments (in that they show extreme circumstances)

What I find so surprising here is how Apple has handled this whole thing. This thing could have been out of the news early on. First, they blame the user "You're holding it wrong." Then denying the problem while looking for other business partners to blame. Now claiming a competitors phone has similar issues. I like Apple products and admired the company as a great success story. They have a lot to learn about handling a problem such as this.

Enough of the blame game, step up and say "This is the issue we are experiencing with the phone...". Then say "This is what we intend to do to resolve the issue...". Then finish by saying "Thank you very much for your patience. We appreciate your business and loyalty". That will strengthen the perception of your company rather than weaken it.

It would be nice if company's handled issues honestly and with responsibility. This seems to Apple's turn to learn from a series of mishandled events.

How would I grip my VzW Storm 2 to lose my signal? I wanna show all my phone friends that I have a cool phone too.

Oh nvm I found out how to do it. I just gotta cup my phone in both hands trying to cover as much as the sides as I can and then it dropped one bar from 5 to 4. While its not as easy, now I can fit in with my iPhone friends. Thanks for the tip Steve Jobs!

Nope! I held it with one hand... I held it with two hands... I covered everything but the signal display, and no movement at all. I picked up my friends iPhone 4... signal dropped until it said "No Service". I don't get everyone that wants to pretend like they have an idea of what is going on, but "no service" means nothing. Whether it's a software or hardware issue, you can't make calls or use data when there's no signal.

This has happened to me for years with all Blackberrys and all iPhone generations. My Blackberry, in my office, always goes down or goes OUT completely. I have to drop it to regain signal.

When I griped my phone, all signal bars disappeared. Infact, my whole homescreen disappeared. Because my camera, media player and volume control opened from pressing the convenience keys. ... Other than that, I cannot reproduce it on my TMo 9700.

When I griped my phone, all signal bars disappeared. Infact, my whole homescreen disappeared. Because my camera, media player and volume control opened from pressing the convenience keys. ... Other than that, I cannot reproduce it on my TMo 9700.

Ha, he says it's not unique to iPhone 4....on several videos I seem to remember people just placing ONE FINGER on the dreaded area and signal went to searching in several examples. On no other phone can you place one finger anywhere and duplicate results. It's funny how he says all smartphones are crap and passes around the blame. Apple ftw.

So will all the BB owners out there get a free bumper from Apple when they ruin their BB trying to reproduce this BS. I have a 9700 and when holding the device normally I have no issues, very hesitant to give my phone a “death grip” as I don’t know what internal components I am damaging to recreate this. Blackberry really needs to have an "emergency press conference" warning not to try this at home!

"Apple's attempt to draw RIM into Apple's self-made debacle is unacceptable. Apple's claims about RIM products appear to be deliberate attempts to distort the public's understanding of an antenna design issue and to deflect attention from Apple's difficult situation. RIM is a global leader in antenna design and has been successfully designing industry-leading wireless data products with efficient and effective radio performance for over 20 years. During that time, RIM has avoided designs like the one Apple used in the iPhone 4 and instead has used innovative designs which reduce the risk for dropped calls, especially in areas of lower coverage. One thing is for certain, RIM's customers don't need to use a case for their BlackBerry smartphone to maintain proper connectivity. Apple clearly made certain design decisions and it should take responsibility for these decisions rather than trying to draw RIM and others into a situation that relates specifically to Apple."
- Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie

Stick That in your pipe and smoke it Steve!

I'm on Bell Canada, on their new network with Telus and I don't experience that death grip, no matter how hard I squeeze it or hold it. Maybe if I'm indoor, where the 5 bars are not as strong as the 5 bars I get outside, it might happen, but as far as I can tell, I've never experience any call drop or signal lost except for BlackBerry servers downtimes.

I tried holding my Storm2 on Verizon's network several different ways and the signal actually improved in every case (not that is was bad in the first place).

I don't have a Bold 9700, but I manage our AT&T account at work and I tried testing the Bold 9000, Curve 8310, Curve 8900, Curve 8520 and (just for the fun of it) an 8700c.

I couldn't replicate this with any of them. I asked three friends that have Bold 9700's (2 AT&T & 1 T-Mobile) and none of them could replicate it either.

I've got a Tour with Verizon and at home, on my couch, I get good service. If I held my phone in the death grip, a super tight and ridiculously uncomfortable position, then I would go from 5 bars, down to 2, then instantly back up to 5. I think I just spent the last 20 minutes death gripping and in that time it only did this twice. Otherwise I just have full bars.

My hand is sore now. Haha.

I have this issue. I have had a Bold 9700 from T-Mobile since the first day. I am on my 10th phone. A few weeks after I bought it I started to notice that my signal would drop after I touched my phone. I hold it in my palm, not tight, but in a normal fashion. By doing this, I can make it drop from 5 bars 3G to Edge to GSM/GPRS and finally SOS (no service). I noticed this usually only happens indoors (my house, work) as outside I usually can't make a dent. Every time I called T-Mobile, I would get a different excuse. First it was a defect. Then it was an OS glitch (not so since I have installed pretty much any OS out there to no avail). They sent me multiple devices all of which do the same. I once was put through to RIM and after 3 hours of being told he wasn't sure, he spoke to someone and came back and told me it was a known issue with some of their devices that they were internally aware of. Still aside from replacing my phone with a new one with the same problem, there wasn't much they could do. I think it may have to do with weak signal...for what it's worth, my dad has the same phone for AT&T and has no such issue. I basically can't text/bbm or hold my phone without dipping it down to 1 bar edge or having it lose signal completely. Really annoying when the only way to send and receive stuff is to lay it down on my desk. :(

I have the Bold 9700 with T-Mobile and I ALWAYS have full 3G coverage where ever I go including basements. Apple is just sad the iPhone is good for playing games and thats about it. It sucks at everything a cell phone is meant for. Call quality, Text Messages, E-Mail and Internet. Its just sad that the big bad iPhone 4G can't even hold a signal. BlackBerry for life everything else will always be second to RIM devices.

The only way I can get my 9700 to drop bars is to really really really grip it and push it into the palm of my hand with the other hand. After it drops, it goes right back to 5 bars.

Even if it does happen to all phones, no one holds their phones in such an extreme matter.

I just checked on my BB 9700 with the way Mr.Jobs held the phone. I don't see anything on Blackberry. After repeating couple of times, I could see that it dropped from -70dmb to -81dmb. This is the max. drop i saw(this is equivalent of dropping just 1 bar and still pretty good signal).

I do agree with the Apple claims that this is how all the phones work. But, I think making it as a metal body was the one impacted much of their issues. This is the reason why probably i liked the Nokia's statement. "When there is a conflict with Antenna vs design of the phone... we give priority to Antenna". Probably Apple can't do that... Apple iPhone is much like an iPod touch with a Phone feature. :-)

I also don't think that they can talk anything about BB in the corporate world. They have to come long way in the corporate world.

I am convinced with all these things after buying a 3GS. It has features... great screen... good browser... but lacks a lot. Just my personal opinion.

My tour phone's signal actually INCREASED? No seriously, it does! HAHAHA!! Screw you apple, let me see you guys work THAT magic! Gotta love verizon and Blackberry!

Did he seriously try to mess with Blackberry? RIM IS OFF LIMITS SIR!

I held the phone in every single death-hold possible and nothing happened.

We have SMARTPHONES, not entertainment-phones designed for the ill wit.

I did it on my 8530 and it dropped from three bars to two and while still holding it it jumped to four. I just can't wait for a third party test on this besides consumer reports or whatever they are called. But jobs is smart and if you look in the forums even now all the die hard Apple fans are clamoring at the "evidence" and that's its not only their phones lol. Yet if you read hear 99% can't get it to drop the way he is saying it does.

I immediately was in shock after viewing Steve's presentation of the deathgrip on 9700 .. i grabbed my precious bb and bam the signals did DROP via deathgrip .... so i guess he does have a point there.. would RIM refund my money?

I can get my 8900 to lose signal at work, but only inside where it has a weak signal to start with (one or two bars depending how close to an open door, I happen to be standing close to), which is why I rely on WiFi at work.

When out of the building and does
not matter how I hold the phone it stays at 5 bars unless I wrap the phone with foil and hold the phone with both palms. (Hey I was bored).

I tried for 5-10 minutes with the case off. I tried many different positions and griped as hard as I dared. I didn't see my signal bars drop AT ALL!! I have T-mobile and a 9700. I think ole' Stevie just got caught trying to pass crap out to the masses becuase he knew it would be consumed no matter what. Even now that people know there is a problem, they will rationalize it and buy it still. Way to be Apple drones!

I don't own a Bold 9700, just a Bold 9000, on Orange in the UK. If I leave the phone untouched I get 5 bars of signal, picking the phone up drops it to 4 bars, if I death grip the phone it will drop to 2 bars. If you go into status and look at the signal values, unheld it is -70dBm, held -89 dBm and gripped -110 to -120 dBm under extreme pressure, these are signal strength losses of 19 dBm (1/80th of unheld) and 40 dBm (1/10000th of unheld). Obviously nobody uses the phone gripped tightly but in the 18 months I've used the phone it rarely loses a call.

If I death grip with both hands, covering the majority of the device, it doesn't drop even a bar. Don't like doing it though, who knows how much radiation a dual handed death grip soaks up.

Sorry Jobs, but don't say every smartphone sucks just because you made a lemon.

I have a Bold 9700 and an iPhone 4.......
Where I live is not a great 3G area.....BUT.........
I rarely lose a call...
My biggest problem: the stupid compression problems between ATT and Verizon...that makes for those awkward pauses in conversation....
Heh...yeh...what?....Go ahead...Wha???

9550.. if you hold it real tight covering much of the right side, the signal drops down. but its not a way that anyone would hold it.

if i hold my 9700 like in the picture, i get 5 bars instead of 3 without holding it in the hand.. very nice!

What Mr. Jobs conveniently neglects to mention is that even a bb that was not rushed into production with design flaws will show fluctuation in signal even when noone is touching it! It sounds like the desperate act of a drowning man. A picture of him drowning and standing on someone else to stay afloat comes to mind. I thought he had more class, than that parlor trick.

It is possible that by super gripping the Bold, the signal falls. But the issue here is that the Iphone does so without applying so much force to it. They are really trying hard to cover up the real issue: bad design.

Not everyone here says yes, but a lot of them did. So whats the diffrence with Apples Iphone.

BB need battery pulls and have the clock of death as well as the red light of death, and the black plauge that was the storm 1. So uhh, yea about that.

I tried the death grip with my hands and I couldn't get the signal to budge past -70. I tried everything. Then I decided to put it between my thighs and cover the top and bottom with my hands. I squeezed as hard as I could. Well, the signal dropped to -89 for 2 seconds then went back to -70. I couldn't replicate the drop again. So, Jobs, I can make a call with my phone between my legs, can you?

I tried holding my 9700 a bunch of different ways and nothing happened. Just because the iPhone has a bad antenna design doesn't mean that Apple should claim that other phones have the same problem when they don't. Even if there is a way to duplicate the problem, it still doesn't matter because that isn't the normal way people hold a BB. I either have my phone in my right hand only (just holding it with my fingers, my palm isn't even touching the phone so no chance of deathgrip), or with both hands when I'm typing, once again, only fingers. So even if this does happen, nobody actually holds their BB that way, meaning it's not even a problem. It's like complaining that the brakes don't work in a car you don't drive. It's a problem, but if you don't drive the car then you don't need brakes. I think RIM should sue Apple for the bad press it gave the 9700.

Dear Steve Jobs,
Instead of comparing the iPhone 4's signal strength to a 9700's, did you think of doing so with a 3Gs? What? No issues? hmm...maybe if you just admitted that you screwed up so people would think you're being sincere?

Wow! what a jackass!

Gotta call BS on this. No matter how I grip my phone, my signal doesn't change. Sorry Job's but this is complete BS.

depending on where you are, I can see this happening. Using the status to show the signal strength, my signal drops about 7dB between the loose vs tight grip. Bars aren't really useful for any quantitative measurement...

I think what Jobs is doing is something a child would. Pointing out other phones so called "death grip". I just did it on my phone with a jel-skin on and no change. I think it's time for Jobs to be a man and admit to making a bad design. Don't hold it this way, oh its a software issue, other phone have death grips. Stop coming up with excuses! What’s next? Its BPs (British Petroleum) fault for where the antenna is located on the iphone.

No Jobs is doing what a lot of other people should be doing and that is looking at the big picture and not being narrow minded like all the people who jump on a band wagon and try to destroy the competition with incomplete facts and then when the facts come out all the competition cries fowl play.

What big picture? That they finally made an OS that can show multi-tasking, creating folders to organize stuff in, etc. How the have a camera on the front so that only people with the iphone4 can make video conference on an already slow network?

The point that I am trying make is that the CEO of the company needs to step up and say "We mad a bad design and we are sorry." Not act like a 5 year old and point fingers at other companies to avoid some bad press.

Do you own a iPhone? I do and a Bold 9700 How can you say its a bad design. Has the Storm been proven to be a good design? I have a brother who owns the Storm2 and he likes it but it has its problems and some coworkers who own them also and are not happy with them. But I like my BB9700 just fine even though I can make it drop bars just like i can my Iphone. So if I take what you say about design then my Bold 9700 is a bad design.

No I dont own an Iphone4 but my brother does, and i have used for a couple of days. No one will ever make the perfect phone, EVER!!! Its one thing not to be happy with your phone. Its a whole nother when you cant place you hand on it a certain way, because it will interfere with the phones operation.

i know what i said. I never said that RIM made is way better then iphone. What i said was that the CEO needs to accept that there maybe issues with the phone and work on it and not pass the blame off to someone else.

I have no clue where the antenna is on my curve 8900 but since I read that it was on the top (where it should be anyway) I tried to recreate the death grop. Oddly enough my signal went up…weird.

Except the way I do it isn't how it is shown in the picture. If I hold my thumb over the AT&T logo(length of thumb along length of the phone so that thumb is just below the bottom row of keys) and grasp the phone so that my index finger is running along the back of the phone parallel to my thumb, I can go from full signal to one bar.

Also, I noticed...and this is going to weird some people out...that when I'm in the fourth floor bathroom at my work, if I set the phone down on the TP dispensor, I get full signal. If I so much as touch the phone in any way, the signal drops to zero bars and it begins searching for a signal.

Really now that the I4 is hear they now know the problem. My friend has had signal issues with every modle of Iphone. I may not have all the apps that he does but at least I can make a call and not get droped left and right.

Shouldn't that give you are more accurate reading than looking at bars on the screen?
Anyway, the phone (9700 on TM) reads 70dbm when held normally or resting on a table. That's equal to full bars. If I try to surround the phone with both hands, once in a great while it will jump to 81dbm, but then strength seems to increase back to 70dbm very quickly. I don't have dropped calls. I am in an area (SF Bay Area) where the Ifone has notoriously bad voice service. My young associate has an Ifone (att) and the 9700 on TM and uses the 9700 almost exclusively, at least when he needs reliable connections.

WOW I added a theme to my Bold 9700 and instead of bars for the signal it has percentage......awesome no more losing bars.....I feel so much better now.

I've had cell phones since day one (20 yrs?) (Remember pig tail antennas on cars?) I thot it was a given that the body could definitely affect signal strength. Supposedly, if you put your head between the signal source and the phone, it could weaken the signal.
As mentioned above, I can't get my hands to weaken my 9700 except on rare occasion - when it comes right back up in about 10 seconds.
Maybe it would be different if I weren't in a strong signal area.

When on EDGE with 3 bars I can reduce it with consistency to 1 bar using the death grip. 3G service has no change however.

LoL crap... I will never blame the size of condom if my prick is small... Seems to me hottest selling smart phone isn't that hot after all... Sucha JOKE

I have tested this on my blackberry 9700, blackberry 9100, HTC Desire and Nokia 6720 (I could test sony ericssons and motorolas when I get back to work, but I dont see the point). No matter how I wrap my hands around any of the phones the 3g connection did not drop enough to be visialised as a drop in bars.

Apple need to F#&Ken grow up and stop blaming everyone but themselves. I might expect to see a single bar dropped but to see a phone go from full bars to one or none is just a really crappy design.

Ive held no respect for apple for a long time, and now they are failing at the one thing they have been succeeding at (marketing).

Just cause you have your own problems Apple, doesn't mean you have to go around trying to hurt the competition around you. Obviously BlackBerry users are having fine signal. I am a BlackBerry Bold 9700 owner and tried to lose service, but couldn't make it happen. It started at 5 bars and stayed there. I have T-Mobile, not AT&T. AT&T isn't supposed to be the most reliable either. Apple should have caught this problem before the launch! They knew about it before, but decided to release it!

Bottom line - I'm so happy with my BlackBerry and can't see myself ever holding an iPhone that cannot even make sufficient calls when that should be its primary feature! I love RIM.

I tried it a few more times and it stayed at full strength. I'm on Rogers too and rarely have any dropped calls.

I tried this for the sake of it on my Curve 8900 and if I really tried hard, I lost about 2 bars of signal at most. However, I never ever hold the phone like that and it didn't cut my signal completely so it really doesn't affect me at all.

Um.. Steve actually said in an area where reception was "weak" to start...

and before you ask, yes you can have weak coverage and still have full bars on your phone...

example:

in a weak area, if i have full coverage and put my phone in my pocket, i start to lose coverage

in strong area, if i have full coverage and put my phone in my pocket, i maintain full coverage.

I wont go into details about me being an antenna specialist/RF technician for the DoD...

Steve Jobs is getting old..... or is Apple getting old???? Instead of being creative and come forward to full confession, they are simply pointing fingers now. Shame on Apple, & Jobs. I thought that MAN was GREAT........................

Here's what I got out of the press conference

-> Apple wants you to think a drop in bars is the same as dropping a call

-> Apple "used a bad algorithm" to calculate bars.... basically they tried to make their 'revolutionary' antenna design look better than it was by showing 5 bars when in Jobs' own words the signal was "more like 2 or 3 bars"

-> Apple put all this money into how the phone looks and now to use it you have to cover it with a case

-> The number of dropped calls increased "less than 1 out of 100 calls". You figure 3 million phones, a reasonable average of 5 calls a day, that's an ADDITIONAL 'less than 150,000' dropped calls every day

-> The .55% of people who complained to AppleCare probably doesn't include any of the complaints made to retail stores or to AT&T by people that didn't call AppleCare. The way he kept emphasizing "people who called AppleCare" just makes me suspicious. And .55% is still 16,500+ complaints in three weeks...

On an unrelated note, the company who manufactures Apple's products over in China has had over a dozen suicides on company property so far this year. The problem is big enough that the company plans to put up 1.5 million square feet of netting around it's buildings to stop people from killing themselves on company property. I chose not to do business with a company that does business with companies like that...

And I have to say - great response. Spot-on. I love how some bitter BB-users (or former users) and obvious Apple loyalists conveniently miss the plain and simple truth.

Look, when RIM screws up, I'm the first so ask "What the hell was THAT about?" And I like the I4, but this whole situation has become comical. Apple's hardware design was flawed heavily, focusing on media and relegating normal phone use to a secondary (or tertiary) priority.

BS "photos" are just lame... A press conference stating that they have some fixes in the works to allow users - who spent much $$$ and effort getting one of the most hyped gadgets in recent memory, dubbed the best in the world - to actually GET what they paid for would have served them MUCH better, I believe. Sure, the CB community here probably would've had a good (and prolonged) laugh, but nowhere near the blatant loss of respect.

But are Apple full of shit? My Bold 9700 is perfectly fine, no issues at all. Talk about mug slinging.

Chuck Norris gets PERFECT reception on HIS iPhone4....Chuck Norris DOESN'T touch the antenna when HE holds it!!

I live in Lafayette IN and have very minimal signal loss, like from -70 to -81 no matter how I hold it. That is with the case removed. And the only time I have had dropped calls with this phone or my 9000 I had before is when I drive through this one spot out in the boondocks driving through a cornfield.

I, ever since Apple said this happens with all phones, have tried this on my blackberry curve....and u know what? I still have full bars everytime. :D

I just did something really stupid...I actually tested my BB-BOLD'S antenna / reception bla-bla! Why in God's name?!?!

Because a competitor (new to the market) couldn't or wouldn't Face-the-Music with its own design problems?!?

My Provider works fine. This is my second BBerry BOLD. 9000 & 9700. Have both and use both on a daily basis. I DO NOT have to pay attention to silly things like; How I hold my phone..! For Christ's Sake!!

I allowed myself to be caught up in this BS**T! Pathetic.

I'm off to garb my BOLD hold it and make a call.....LMAO!!!

...if I cup my phone in both of my hands and hold it close to my gut it will drop 2 bars.

I hold my phone like that all the time. I was thinking about buying an iPhone 4 because I LOVE holding my phone in difficult and uncomfortable positions and I WANT carpal tonal syndrome too! NOT!!!

I wasn't able to replicate it with the death grip. The only way I was able to replicate the effect was to hold the phone upside down with the bottom of the phone in the palm of my hand. In no way was I able to replicate it by holding the phone like any normal human being. Even then, the worst I got was down to 2 bars.

i grabbed my 9650 to see if the signal dropped after i heard him say that all phones do it. did you hear his response to the guy in the audience ask why his BB signal wasn't dropping? "we have two cell towers on campus so it wouldn't happen here" are you serious lmfao

I tried to as soon as Jobs mentioned it. I could only make it drop one bar from 5 by clutching it so tight that it left marks on my palm.

I tried 5 times. I am on AT&T.

I am using the 9700 with the 3 piece otter box (has to be the thickest case available for the phone) and even with the "death grip" I experience barely any signal loss and certainly no dropped calls.

i have a tour, storm 1, and a curve 8330 all on VZW. only the tour is activated, but the others still remain conneceted to 1x. this is at my home where ATT service is virtually non existant, but VZW gives me a steady 4-5bars at almost all times.

i tried on all three and my results when holding the same way as in the video, were as follows:

tour: began at 4 bars, held until backlight turned off (30sec) no reduction in bars. when tightly cupped from both top and bottom, covering all 4 edges of the phone, i was able to make it drop from 4 bars to 2 almost instantly, but just as fast as it dropped, it almost immedietly shot back up to 4 bars. this is a way i never hold my phone for data or voice.

storm 1:began at 4 bars, same 30 sec test time and position held, no drop in bars. when holding in landscape mode, as i normally would, i saw a drop from 5 bars to 1, but once again it very quickly shot back up to 4, ~1-2sec.

curve: started at 5 bars, same 30sec test time, and saw no drop in bars. when held in a landscape style cupping both ends and sides almost completely i was able to make it drop from 5-4 bars in the 30sec test time.

for the record i am typing this on a macbook, and i also have an original iphone, (cancelled the service since it never got more than 2 bars at home, work, or school, or anywhere for that matter except the main roads/highways around here in northern california). i love my macbook, and i love my blackberry, and id love to play with android. myiphone would have been great when i had it active if only i could have used to to do anything data or voice related. but anyway my point is, that yes this is a problem in all cell phones, and is inevitable to a certain level, however this reproduction video by apple is clearly exaggerated and an attempt to hide a mistake. u can easily tell it by steves body language and tone. i do not have an eris or an omnia II to try this on, but my tour is similar in respect to the 9700, and certainly saw no drop when i held it the way steve showed it being held and almost instantly dropping from 5-1 bars.

But sometimes if I imagine real hard, hold my breath, do a little dance and perform a Vulcan nerve pinch on it, I can cause it to drop half a bar... Seriously, is Apple full of 6 year olds?

"Well, after a few thousand quick votes it seems some 86% of us BlackBerry Bold 9700 users think El Jobso's evidence is a big pile of BS. As for the 14% who think it may hold water, well, I'm sure some of those must be legit... but the numbers speak for themselves."

I'm a proud owner of a Storm2, so I certainly have no allegiance to Apple, but what are the numbers for iPhones that have issues. My understanding is that not all iPhones experience the problem. So if that number is at or near %14 (assuming this poll is an accurate reflection of the BlackBerry population) then I would say it does hold water. Just saying.

I have discovered that if I tightly cup the base of my 9700 I will lose 2 bars of signal. However this is not how I would normally hold my phone and that is where the difference lies - using and holding the BB naturally will never replicate the iphone fault

@nicnoc: "I have discovered that if I tightly cup the base of my 9700 I will lose 2 bars of signal. However this is not how I would normally hold my phone and that is where the difference lies - using and holding the BB naturally will never replicate the iphone fault"

That's not a difference. Holding the iPhone and bridging the antennae in the lower-left corner of the device is not how the majority of people hold their cell phones either. The point is, *some* people hold their phones that way, and those people will see issues on either phone. For the iPhone, those issues are just about completely eliminated by adding a thin case; for the Tour and Bold, those issues are alleviated somewhat by the addition of a case, but not as much.

well I was browsing through my TIME app on my trusty bb 9700 when I came across their quote of the day by Mr. Jobs. It said "Just avoid holding it that way."

Haha seriously? Here's a thought, maybe you could get an even better signal by holding your iphone above your head or out of your car window. Well done el Jobby. Well done.

Why can't people just accept that the situation is as it appears?? There are far less than 14% of iPhone 4 users claiming that they have an issue. If that's the case, there's more of a problem with the Bold than with the iPhone. The issue is not iPhone specific, and there are plenty of people who are experiencing no problems whatsoever. If there are Bold users who experience the drop in bars then it's a real issue.

From what I have seen on my co-workers iP4 is that it actually drops a call or lose data connection when held the "wrong" way.

I would like to know how many BB, Nokia etc owners drop calls this way, to me that is what's important.

I am disappointed that Jobs, after insisting multiple times that Apple is an engineering company, failed to mention even once the real signal fluctuation in dBm and keep talking about bars. Bars are not standardized on every device and are not a true representation of the actual signal handling capability of the phone.

Just my 2 cents. :)

Maybe it is not quite the same thing, but I tried it every way possible with my Storm 2 and I could not even get it to drop one bar. Sorry Steve, back to the iphone drawing board!

Well, I have the 8100 so I can't really participate in the poll, but I have tried the various holds on my phone.

Only if I cup both hands around the bottom of it do I start to see the bars drop. But if I wait a while, they go back up a bit.

I can't duplicate the Grip o' Death, but my phone does switch to GPRS when I'm on a call, from 3G... and my 1st 3 (yes, 1st THREE) Bold 9700's dropped (or call failed, or wouldn't connect at all) with like 1 our of every 3 calls... Seems better now, probably related to some app that was trying to use all my connectivity...

I don't have a 9700 but I did try it with my Storm 2 & it didn't move. All I got were the two arrows going back and forth across the bars for a second & then they stopped. Is he sure it's the phone? I feel it's the network. When I was on AT&T I would get call failed on my Curve at least 3x a month. I have yet to get that now that I am on Verizon. *fingers crossed*

I'm also with rogers and my signal drops a couple of bars. I bought an all chrome housing for my bold 9700 and for the last 2 weeks I couldn't figure out why I couldn't get any service untill I took the chrome housing off and now my phone is back to normal.

I can easily cause 2-3 bar loss with the Death Grip on my 9630 Tour (Verizon), but ONLY when in an area with less than 5 bars to start with. But that's also similar to what I can do with an iP4. I don't frankly see a difference between them in that respect, or w/regard to call quality/dropping, or applications pulling data over the cell network.

I suspect (very strongly) that a lot, though not all, of the "I can't reproduce it" results involved tests at very strong wireless signal, where the "problem" is much less or even nonexistent.

For example, at my desk at work, where they've wired the building for all the major cell networks (used to drop calls on ALL networks, now don't drop on any), the signal stays at maximum bars no matter what I do with iP4 or Tour.

But trying the same tests in weaker signal locations yields loss of bars for both phones, though no problems in dropped calls or lagging data draw.

I've only tested this in a few places, but the above held in all of them (weak signal areas show the "problem" on both phones, strong signal areas show no problem for either phone).

It would be nice if users would report the reported signal strength when they do these "tests," at the least, instead of just "can't reproduce" (the experimental conditions *DO* matter here!!)... Or is this asking too much from the users...?

Good point, I did the test from work and could not reproduce it. This is in a very strong signal area. My co-workers iP4 ffrom the same place not only drops bars but loses connectivity with holding it the same way.

Strong signal area for your phone, iPhone, both or all phones? In my case, the building was wired for almost all the national networks. I actually have my iP4 showing numeric signal strength most of the time (toggle to bars with a tap), thanks to having set the test mode before upgrading. At my desk I literally could not get it to drop even one digit (I think it was fixed at -59). I wonder if your test had very strong signal for your network, and borderline signal for ATT?

I am not sure if your question is directed to me but I am on AT&T as well.

As I mentioned in a previous post his actually drops the call or disconnects from data 30 % of the time.

I am not sure about the percentage that calls Apple Care, I doubt everyone calls my co-worker went to the local AT&T for one.

Wow, 30% disconnects/drops rate STRONGLY suggests a defective device. Not sure I'd draw any major conclusions based on that. Your co-worker should be able to reproduce that for the Apple folks and get it replaced then. His case might be stronger (seriously!) if you bring your ATT device along to show them how well yours works compared to his. Good luck!

Take a good look at the picture, since the "g" in 3G is capitalized (meaning its connected to the BIS network), shouldn't there be a little blackberry logo? Since there is no logo, its not connected to the data network, therefore it should be a lower case g correct? This seems a lot like a set up.

I also did the test and I saw no loss in bars and my signal strength remained at -70 the entire time!

I am on Bell Mobility in Canada, and have never had a dropped call on my 9700.

I have tried holding the phone in all kinds of different ways and have never had issues either.

I hate it when a company such as Apple tries to downplay the seriousness of their issues and/or tries to deflect the blame to other companies.

I have a 9500 which is supposed to be lower end and the only way I lose two bars in my HOUSE is by covering up every last bit of it, the back, the screen, the top&bottom and sides, and I'm still on a 3G+(with the capital G, I think that plus and g us the normal one with a BB) connection, which is the second best after 4G which not even barely included in any phone, only the one HTC or something, I'm getting the 9700 soon! So excited!

Im a 9700 owner on ATT and i have the drops temporarily issue. So I really have no complaints. However your little study actually proves Jobs to be right. His facts and data show .5% of users have issues. Your study shows 14.5% of users have issues. Going off of hard facts I would say the iphone 4 is more reliable.

I have a bold 9700 with t-mobile and I live in Puerto Rico.. Here where I live t-mobile isn't that great (no 3g) but a least I have a great phone, I love my BB BOLD and and where I live is pretty damn from the city and I never drop a call... My brother has the iphone Rgs and when he's talking to someone important he always borrows my phone becouse he's iphone always drops the call... And when I say always is always hahaha apple suck period

I tried the test myself and did NOT lose signal, or coverage, or anything. I'm on AT&T and I hear people complain about their coverage, but I've never had an issue with it. The so-called "Death Grip" did not change my Bold 9700's performance one bit!

I don't own an iPhone and I have been a blackberry user since the beginning. I must say however that my current blackberry - the 9000 is the worst phone I have ever owned in terms of dropped calls. I use it for work so I'm stuck with it but to be clear - nothing drops more calls than this phone. Clearly ATT owns part of the blame for this but my blackberry 8800 ran circles around it in terms of dropped calls in the same exact coverage area.

I've just been wondering about this "Death Grip" ..... Does anyone actually hold a phone like that? I'm just curious.

Steve Jobs thinks this is not a problem and that it is media created. He needs to wake up iPhone 4 NEEDS TO BE RECALLED the free case is just a band-aid on a boo boo and can't guarantee you won't drop more calls. all phones may have some attenuation when held but not to the point where you lose service or drop calls. My curve 8330 will drop a bar but it comes back and i hold it to my ear, i do use a skin on my phone more for protection then anything else. and in my year plus have dropped 1 call but it wasn't my fault my friend on the other end was using an iPhone (3g) go figure

Steve jobs and his lack of accountability makes anybody who has any sshread of customer loyalty to apple question upper level management. The downfall of apple will rest assured be because of greedy lil pencil pushers who refuse to be held accountable. Thanks RIM for not only testing vigorously your equipment but offering the leading technology in a manner where such a mess is avoided. To the attention of details...viva la blackberry.

i just tried it and i was able to duplicate it. but i have been using my 9700 for 6 months now and have never noticed it before. so its only when i grip it exactly like that. i don't have problems with normal use.

edit: i just tried it again outside of my house where i get a full set of bars and i could not replicate it. so the first time was probably a fluke

I did this with my 9000 on ATT and it did nothing. I had full bars! You would think mine being an older model that the antenna may not be as good as the new bold but it was perfect. To be honest, when I drop calls its usually when I am talking to my sister and she is on her Iphone 3gs.

I'm able to have my Rogers 9700 drop two bars when I grip it really tightly as shown in the video. I was shocked. Had to have my wife observe so that i knew I wasn't seeing things. Still love my berry and would never leave it but was very surprised.

Well, I've been messing around with this for a while tonight. If I take my case off (I use a hard gel case), I can definitely get this to work. Starting with full bars, if I squeeze the phone pretty hard, it immediately starts losing signal strength down to just 1 bar. If I keep a good grip, it stays there. Then as soon as I let go, it climbs right back up to full bars. I had never seen this before.

Now, given these results, I still don't think this is an issue. Realistically, I would never grip the phone this hard during any use, so maybe this is inherent to the phone design, but I can't see it ever having an impact on my use.

I think it's a shame Steve Jobs attacks other smartphone manufacturers in order to state, that the iPhone is no worse than other devices. I Tried to replicate the problem with my Bold 9700 and to even lose one bar I have have to grip my mobile with both hands around the antenna and I don't know about all you of out there but I find that a bit uncomfortable for making a phone call. Also the iPhone loses bars when you touch it in one distinct place, how on earth can you compare that to other phones?

I'm an Apple user since almost a decade now and I must say, even though Steve Jobs has done a whole lot to get Apple to where it is today, he lost a lot of sympathy and credibility.

First Hold BB 9700 in left hand, just like shown in Apple picture/video. Then stick your hand, while still holding the BB 9700, either in a LEAD BOX or up an iPhone Fanboy's A*S. Note: You only need to stick it in as far as your wrist! The bars go all the way down and I loose my connection to both the network and bluetooth headset.

Gee Steve must be right, I can reproduce this every time.
Note: I used no lube when inserting it in the Fanboy's A*S, as this would add to the original test and screw with the results. Lead Box (Purchased Online), Fanboy (Aquired at Apple Store)

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