When Apple last overhauled the iPhone, our corporate cousins at Consumer Reports ruled that, in spite of all the device’s positives, they could not recommend it because of the so-called “death grip” issue, a fundamental design flaw that could lead to weakened signals or dropped calls if the user placed their hand over a certain spot on the edge of the phone. Now that the iPhone 4S has hit the market and the testers at CR have had the chance to put it through its paces, would the new phone fare better than its predecessor?
“Apple’s newest smart phone performed very well in our tests,” writes Consumer Reports in its review, “and while it closely resembles the iPhone 4 in appearance, it doesn’t suffer the reception problem we found in its predecessor in special tests in our labs.”
So while the antenna death grip problem appears to have been worked out, what about the operating system issues that Apple says are causing some users to experience problems with the 4S’ battery life?
The testers at Consumer Reports didn’t experience any of the battery problems that some other users have complained about, but says it will re-test the device after Apple issues a software fix to see if there is any measurable change.
In general, the iPhone 4S tested well, writes CR:
Overall, the new iPhone 4S scores higher in the Ratings than the iPhone 4, thanks to such enhancements as an upgraded camera, a faster “dual-core” processor, and the addition of the intriguing Siri voice-activated feature, which accepts and responds to verbal commands in a conversational manner, using a synthetic-sounding female voice.
But the 4S did not test better than the best of the new Android-based phones, including the the Samsung Galaxy S II phones, the Motorola Droid Bionic, and several other phones that boast larger displays than the iPhone 4S.
Consumer Reports Recommends The iPhone 4S [Consumer Reports]