The Mystery of the iPhone Death Grip

The Mystery of the iPhone Death Grip David Pogue June 25, 2010

The hot tech news on Friday is the exploding scandal that has been dubbed the "iPhone Death Grip." Like everything else related to the iPhone, it has turned into an overhyped emotional stew.

Some people are reporting, and even posting videos showing, that when you wrap your hand around the iPhone 4, the cellular Internet strength visibly drops. You can actually see the bars disappearing.

A cellphone that loses its signal when you pick it up? Well, that could be considered a drawback.

I must say, I was mystified at first. I have never seen it on the iPhone unit I have been reviewing. I cannot even reproduce it, no matter how hard I try. I'm sitting here right now. I'm wrapping my hand every which way - I'm even holding it with two fists, completely concealing the silver band around the edges - and my four-bar signal strength doesn't waver.


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Monty Solomon
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Ahh, but was it being held in the left or right hand?

It is quite conceivable that the internal antenna (is there just one?) is on one side of the device, and depending on how it is held it the signal could be impeded by more body mass than if held differently.

Squishy wet bags of protoplasm are quite good at absorbing RF.

-- Regards, David.

David Clayton Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. Knowledge is a measure of how many answers you have, intelligence is a measure of how many questions you have.

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