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Scenes from the iPhone 4 antenna press event (photos)

Apple holds a press conference to address reports that the iPhone 4's antenna had a reception-damaging design.

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Josh Lowensohn
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1 of 25 Josh Lowensohn/CNET

Scenes from Apple's iPhone 4 antenna press briefing

CUPERTINO, Calif.--Apple on Friday held an invite-only press conference to discuss its latest mobile device, the iPhone 4, and more specifically, the reported reception issues users were having.

During the one hour and 20 minute press conference, Apple CEO Steve Jobs detailed the company's own findings on the matter, as well as information on dropped calls from AT&T.

Following the presentation, Jobs was joined on stage by Apple COO Tim Cook and Senior VP of Macintosh Hardware Engineering Bob Mansfield to answer questions from the press.

Click through to find out what happened. See also our live blog of the event, which goes into more detail.

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Apple CEO Steve Jobs begins the presentation

Steve Jobs kicked off the presentation by noting that "We're not perfect. Phone's aren't perfect," and that the company wanted to "make all our users happy."

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"Antennagate"

Jobs referred to the situation as "Antennagate," but said that getting signal loss from holding the iPhone 4 was "not unique" when compared to other smartphones.

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Bars dropping on a Blackberry Bold 9700

To prove the point, Jobs kicked off demos Apple shot of the same thing happening on other devices, starting with a Blackberry Bold 9700.

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Bars dropping on an HTC Droid Eris

Then an HTC Droid Eris running Google's Android OS...

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Bars dropping on a Samsung Omnia

And finally, a Samsung Omnia running Windows Mobile.

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Jobs depicting signal drop on the three phones

Jobs pointed to there being notable signal loss in all three of these devices.

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The culprits

Jobs explained that the problem stemmed from two things: the antenna opening on the side, and a software algorithm that would depict more of a signal than there really was.

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Apple's testing facilities

Jobs argued that the Apple had spent more than $100 million on its antenna engineering facilities, and had some of the world's best scientists and engineers working on the antenna design.

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Inside one of Apple's anechoic chambers

Inside one of Apple's 17 anechoic chambers, where the phones are tested for their antenna reception.

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Reach for the sky

An iPhone 4 being tested inside one of Apple's anechoic chambers.

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Inside the test chamber

An Apple engineer inside an anechoic chamber.

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Less than a percent

Apple said that according to the data from its AppleCare support centers, less than 1 percent of all iPhone users had called about the iPhone 4's antenna or reception.

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Less returns on the iPhone 4 (so far)

Besides the metric on dropped calls, Jobs also said that there had been fewer returns of the iPhone 4 compared to the iPhone 3GS in terms of the launch shipments. This metric was from AT&T's retail though, and not Apple's own retail stores.

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More dropped calls than the 3GS, but not by much

Jobs then said that the iPhone 4 did in fact suffer from more dropped calls than its predecessor, the 3GS. However, that increase was less than one per 100 calls made on AT&T's network.

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A sum of the data

Apple breaks down its iPhone 4 defense.

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"We care about every user."

Jobs then says the problem is limited to a very small percentage of users, but that the company "cares about every user."

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The fixes

To fix it, Jobs says, the company has already put out a software update that changes how bars are represented, as well as fixes what he called "a nasty bug with Microsoft Exchange."

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Free bumpers for all buyers old and new

To remedy the problem though, Jobs said that all users are getting a free case or a Bumper--Apple's first-party iPhone 4 case.

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"We can't make enough bumpers."

Even though the company is giving away free Bumpers, Jobs says Apple can't make them fast enough to meet demand.

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Free Bumpers, and third-party cases

So, to solve the supply issues, Apple is working with third-party case manufacturers to provide iPhone 4 buyers with free third-party cases.

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Apple still planning to ship the white iPhone 4

Jobs said Apple is still planning to ship the white iPhone 4 by the end of July. The variant of the device had originally been slated to launch at the same time as the black version, but was delayed because of manufacturing problems.

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Jobs and company sit down for a Q&A

Jobs was joined on stage by Apple COO Tim Cook and Senior VP of Macintosh Hardware Engineering Bob Mansfield to answer questions from the press.

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The naked iPhone 4's

Cook, Jobs, and Mansfield hold up their unprotected iPhone 4's after vetting a question about whether they used Bumpers, or any other third-party cases.

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Scott Forstall makes a surprise Q&A appearance

Apple's senior VP of iOS Software, Scott Forstall, makes a surprise appearance during the tail end of the Q&A session to address statements about the iPhone 4's antenna radio baseband software that were brought up in a recent New York Times article. Forstall called the claims that the phone's software was somehow at fault for the reception problems "patently false."

For more information on some of these slides, as well as the news conference as a whole, be sure to read our entire live blog here.

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