iPhone 4 - Consumer Reports review causes Apple share drop and online allegations

The iPhone 4 signal saga continues. Apple shares dipped yesterday, after American website Consumer Reports said it could not recommend the device until Apple had solved its antenna problem. Despite the iPhone 4 being the most successful product launch the company has ever had. Apple has allegedly reacted by culling its forum of threads discussing the iPhone 4 and Consumer Reports, although how much weight there is to these rumours is questionable. Read on, and we’ll break it down in detail.

Shares in Apple dropped 3.1 per cent yesterday, marking a $7.93 loss and leaving them at $249.35. However, some analysts are saying any investor worries over the iPhone 4’s signal problems are “overblown”, as Apple became the biggest technology company in the world on May 26 this year, when it overtook Microsoft for the first time since the late 80s.

The Consumer Reports review is widely credited with causing investors consternation, which claimed: “When your finger or hand touches a spot on the phone’s lower left side…the signal can significantly degrade enough to cause you to lose your connection altogether if you’re in an area with a weak signal. Due to this problem, we can’t recommend the iPhone 4. We reached this conclusion after testing all three of our iPhone 4s.”

Apple’s reaction to the review appears to be to remove posts from its own forums which reference it. When we attempted to access them, four discussion threads from Apple’s support boards had been indexed by Google (and displayed on the first page of a search for “consumer reports site:discussions.apple.com”) but could no longer be accessed. That suggests they have been purged from Apple’s support forums by moderators.

However, claims that Apple is sanitising its message boards of all mention of Consumer Reports mentions are wide of the mark. We found six threads that could still be accessed easily. Which brings into doubt speculation currently rife on tech blogs that Apple has been forum threads. Is the company instead deleting threads that’re irrelevant, or contain some other breach of its terms and conditions?

Frankly, we’re unsure. If there’s a conspiracy here, it seems rather half baked. Give us your thoughts in the comments section below.

Out now | £varies | Apple

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