iPhone 4 Antenna Lawsuit Looms - InformationWeek

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iPhone 4 Antenna Lawsuit Looms

Lawyers are rounding up unhappy consumers and could drag Apple into court over smartphone's glitchy reception.

A California-based law firm is trolling for consumers upset with the performance of the iPhone 4 and the device's antenna in particular, possibly with an eye to launching a class-action suit against Apple.

"If you recently purchased a new iPhone and have experienced poor reception quality, dropped calls and weak signals, we would like to hear from you," reads a note on a Web site maintained by Kershaw, Cutter & Ratinoff, of Sacramento.

According to the note, the firm "is currently investigating potential problems with the release of iPhone 4."

Many iPhone 4 buyers have reported that Apple's new smartphone drops its signal if the bottom left corner of the device is covered by the palm of the user's hand—a situation that's common when the phone is wielded by lefties.

Apple isn't new to consumer lawsuits—especially when it comes to the iPhone. The company, along with partner AT&T, have been sued numerous times by attorneys representing consumers fed up with spotty reception and download speeds that are not, they claim, as fast as advertised.

Apple has conceded that the iPhone 4 antenna glitch isn't just a figment of southpaw imaginations.

“Gripping any mobile phone will result in some attenuation of its antenna performance, with certain places being worse than others depending on the placement of the antennas,” an Apple spokesman said last week.

A YouTube member has posted a video that appeared to show a fix that involves placing cellophane tape over the affected parts of the antenna. But Apple fans who endured long lines and shelled out big bucks for the company's newest gadget may not be thrilled about gumming up their sleek new toy with Scotch tape.

iPhone 4 went on sale last week. The 16GB version is priced at $199, while its 32GB cousin goes for $299. A two-year AT&T contract is required.

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