How iPhone Overcame Hardware Concerns to Massive Sales

1.7 million units sold despite complaints that holding the phone reduces signal strength

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In just three days, Apple has sold 1.7 million units of its shiny new iPhone 4. That's up significantly from the 1 million unit sales over the iPhone 3GS launch weekend in 2009. These brisk sales have come despite complaints that holding the gadget a certain way can degrade the phone's signal strength. Has Apple proven that this hardware flaw is no big deal, or are they setting themselves up for 1.7 million seriously angry and formerly loyal customers?

  • iPhone Increasingly Key for Apple The Guardian's Charles Arthur explains, "Sales of the iPhone accounted for 40% of Apple's revenue last quarter. The device has shown an upward trend in sales: the first sold 700,000 on its first weekend in June 2007, despite a high price that was later cut. In 2008, the iPhone 3G sold 1m in its first week."
  • How iPhone Is Already Boosting Apple's Earnings 24/7 Wall Street's Douglas A. McIntyre writes, "Analysts estimate that the iPad will add $3 billion to Apple's sales this year. The new iPhone4 could add at least that much. Analyst consensus estimates for revenue in the fiscal year ending September 30 will be $60 billion and earnings per share will be $13.67. The actual numbers could be 10% greater."
  • Sales Surges Despite Flaws PaidContent's Tricia Duryee observes, "The brisk sales of phones are despite a number of hiccups, including shortages of the white model, stores selling out, complaints about the phone's antenna and both AT&T and Apple's websites straining under the pressure of so many orders on the first day. Jobs said: 'We apologize to those customers who were turned away because we did not have enough supply.' But Apple couldn't be too sorry." ReadWriteWeb's Sarah Perez shrugs, "Despite these issues, consumers lined up for the new device in record numbers, proving once again, those who buy Apple are some of the most loyal customers a company could ever have."
  • Overhyped Antenna 'Problem' Easily Fixed Fast Company's Kit Eaton scoffs, "There's a huge media fuss about a potential failing of the iPhone 4's clever antenna design, with folks concerned it spells radio-drop-out call doom for the phone. We remain to be convinced. But here's a $0.001 DIY fix anyway." The solution? Just put scotch tape over the part of the iPhone that reduces signal strength when touched.
  • Consumers Can't Resist Porn Video Chat ReadWriteWeb's Mike Melanson writes of the new phone's special video chat program, "the video sex chat services are already on the way. ... It's often the case that porn leads the way in technology and we can only wonder what other innovative services using mobile video chat will follow. The utilitarian opportunities are endless, from remote diagnosis of automotive issues to assistance with assembling that pesky Ikea desk."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.