It seems that the Apple PR team has to tread lightly on thin ice these coming days. The Consumer Reports just released its final verdict on iPhone’s “antenna problems”. Apparently, holding the iPhone the wrong way is the culprit to some users’ reports of sudden drop calls and lost data transfers. The Internet forums have recently been abuzz by users complaining about their top of the line iPhone’s constant debacle with signal reception. This prompted the Consumer reports to test the iPhone for themselves.

Signal Detection Problems

The engineers at consumer reports whipped up battery of tests for the iPhone and had successfully proven that the raging complaints are indeed true. Three iPhones got scrutinized and were found to suffer from signal degradation especially if the lower left part of the phone was covered—no wonder lefties are in a rut. The handsets were bought separately from iPhone retailers. To eliminate the carrier problem, the team also tested handsets under AT&T.

The Consumer Reports demands that Apple stop blaming it on a faulty software problem. Earlier, Apple explained that the signal loss suffered by its users was due to its software erroneously displaying more signal bars when it shouldn’t. A temporary, albeit not so pretty solution, is offered by the engineers at Consumer Reports. Placing a “piece of duct tape or another thick, non-conductive material” on the antenna gap can solve the problem. They also advise using a case for the iPhone as well.

The iPhone still ranks high–at the top of the list, in fact—at Consumer Reports because it still offers the best crisp display and camera resolution that the lot has to offer. It however, did not make it to the recommended list. After all, what is a smartphone when it fails the basic requirement functions of a phone?

Design Glitches

Apple’s dilemma now comes with handling the design glitch. When lip service fails to cover and assuage complaints, it’s time to bring drown the iron hand. There have been reports that Apple has started enforcing the full brunt of censorship on its own forums. Threads pertaining to the ‘death grip’ complaints have been deleted. Though a few still remain alive, it’s just a matter of time before they are completely obliterated.

Instead of staunching the public outcry, this has in turn incensed iPhone users and few iPhone user hopefuls alike. This is not a surprising move for Apple though. iPhone’s upgrade to OS 3 also had deleted posts after the wake of aired grievances about the iPod touch WiFi connection woes. Another case that flicked Apple’s censorship board was the reaction to Apple’s move to remove firewire support in MacBook.

Historically, censorship has never benefitted those who stifle public opinion. It only leads for the public to find more avenues to air out their views. As much as Apple would want to let the ranting disappear, censorship will only kindle the outcry. With more and more iPhone users finding the veracity of it all with their own experiences, Apple will not want for PR headaches.

The only thing that could make iPhone users content would be Apple finding a solution and offering it for free.