Apple just admitted that it has always displayed inaccurate signal strength on its phone, falsely boosting the strength of the phone by bar or two in many instances:
Upon investigation, we were stunned to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong. Our formula, in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength. For example, we sometimes display 4 bars when we should be displaying as few as 2 bars.
…Since this mistake has been present since the original iPhone, this software update will also be available for the iPhone 3GS and iPhone 3G.
This is a pretty wild, and slightly suspicious, admission from Apple. It really prompts more questions than answers:
- Why were they always displaying the signal on their own calculation, instead of what AT&T recommended?
- Does this mean AT&T isn’t as bad as everyone says?
- Is Apple not good at making phones?
- Will a Verizon iPhone have the same issues, then?
- How will changing the display fix what appears to be an issue with with band? After all, Apple says in the release, “some users have reported that iPhone 4 can drop 4 or 5 bars when tightly held in a way which covers the black strip in the lower left corner of the metal band.”