In a little over 4 hours it’s expected that Steve Jobs (or maybe Phil Schiller) will take the stage at Apple HQ’s Town Hall to address the iPhone 4 and its reception woes or lack there of. On the eve of every Apple press conference, the Internet explodes with last-minute rumors and various individuals “close to the matter” seem to come out of the woodwork at just the right time. So what can we expect to happen?
Recall: the likelihood of a recall is slim to none. The WSJ reports that “a person familiar with the matter” says a recall is unlikely. The NYT is reporting the same thing based on information from a source that asked to remain anonymous. Besides, a $1.5 billion recall just isn’t in the cards. Like I said before, Apple will only recall something if it starts blowing up or catching on fire.
Another software fix: The same NYT article implies that a second software patch could be coming that would fix the reception issue:
One person with direct knowledge of the phone’s design said Thursday that the iPhone 4 exposed a longstanding weakness in the basic communications software inside Apple’s phones and that the reception problems were not caused by an isolated hardware flaw.
Instead, the problems emerged in the complex interaction between specialized communications software and the antenna, said the person, who agreed to speak on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to discuss the matter.
The person said the problems were longstanding but had been exposed by the design of the iPhone 4. All cellphones can be affected by the way a hand grips the phone, but well-designed communications software compensates for a variety of external factors and prevents calls from dropping, the person said.
Mr. Jobs did not learn about the software problem until after the iPhone 4 shipped last month, the person said.
The glitch could presumably be fixed with a software update, and it appears to be unrelated to one that affected the display of the phone’s signal strength.
Verizon aka Unicorn Land: AT&T could end up being the scapegoat and Apple might publicly acknowledge the Verizon scuttlebutt that’s been going around for years. Is a Verizon iPhone on the horizon?
Credit: “Here’s a $50 credit to go buy yourself a Bumper case.”
Return policy: “We’re upset that you’re having so many issues with your iPhone 4. We still think it’s a great device but if you’d like to return it with no penalty then we’ll understand.” Also, anyone who has purchased a Bumper case will get a full refund or in-store credit.
Free Bumper cases: “Which color would you like?”
Consumer Reports: “Who reads Consumer Reports anymore?”
In-store fix: In a pseudo recall move, Apple could slap on some scotch tape and push us back out the door.
It’s anyone’s guess at this point but we’ll find out at 1PM ET.