Apple must kill the iPhone 4 -- the sooner the better

Rather than follow its annual upgrade cycle for the iPhone, it must deliver a new model ASAP.

Image is everything. And that's why Apple must terminate the iPhone 4 as quickly as possible.

In his Friday morning news conference, Apple CEO Steve Jobs admitted the iPhone 4 is flawed, no doubt a painful admission for a proud man known for his perfectionist ways. He even offered free cases to alleviate the signal and reception problems plaguing some iPhone 4 users.

Jobs went to great lengths to defend the iPhone 4, arguing that the antenna glitch was overblown, and claiming that phones from other manufacturers suffer from the same problem. He also presented statistics to bolster his case: A measly 0.55 percent of iPhone users have contacted Apple support to report antenna or reception woes.

But none of that matters. The iPhone 4 is now tainted in the consumer's eyes. It's no longer a triumph of form and function, but rather a crippled device that requires protective headgear to work properly.

We could debate the merits of the iPhone 4's antenna design all day, but that's beside the point. Perception is reality here, and the public now views Apple's latest offering as The Phone That Drops Calls. And no one can blame AT&T this time either.

I'm not suggesting that Apple completely redesign the iPhone 4, which has gotten rave views for its high-resolution display and other new features. But the company must redesign the phone's antenna to eliminate the Grip of Death problem once and for all. A few minor cosmetic changes might be in order as well, if only to distinguish the new model from its dishonored predecessor.

Then, hopefully after rigorous beta testing, Apple will rename the phone and release it to an adoring public. Well, maybe not as adoring as before. There's bound to be more (healthy) consumer skepticism and less fawning next time around.

Apple needs to act now. Rather than follow its annual upgrade cycle for the iPhone--a relatively leisurely pace in the mobile phone world--it must deliver a new model ASAP.

Again, the iPhone 4 has lost its cachet. It's no longer the coolest gadget in town. People won't swoon over your new iPhone, they'll ask if you're having signal problems.

And, hey, how's that new bumper thing working out for ya?

Yikes. It's enough to force a mass migration to Motorola's new and very popular Droid X.

So, Apple, kill the iPhone 4! Remove all traces of it from the Apple Store. Indeed, drive a stake through its call-dropping heart.

Contact Jeff Bertolucci via Twitter (@jbertolucci) or at jbertolucci.blogspot.com.

Join the Good Gear Guide newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags Appleconsumer electronicsapple iphoneiPhoneiphone 4Phones

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Jeff Bertolucci

PC World (US online)
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?