The iPhone's 'Toyota Moment'

I was in one of the Apple stores this past weekend and got my hands on the iPhone 4 for the first time. The store was crawling with people and many of them were in line to fondle and manipulate the handset. I also heard a number of people who were there to buy one -- they had to get on a waiting list -- mention some of the antenna issues that have been widely reported.

The phone got raves in the press but the negative publicity around the "death grip" reception problem is filtering through to the public at large. This is Apple's "Toyota moment."

The company needs to fix the problem and put it to bed. Otherwise its reputation for quality will be harmed. Toyota's brand and image have been all but destroyed by its failure to address quality issues and the ongoing recall saga. Apple's not going to face that kind of a brand battering but it is vulnerable if the company doesn't act quickly. 

Now on to the phone. Since I haven't been using it for weeks I can't offer any kind of a review. But after having my EVO and getting used to its massiveness the iPhone felt "too narrow" in my hand, much like the HTC Incredible. I want it to be about a fraction of an inch wider.

I have to say the display is amazing and beautiful. Apple's delay though in getting the device to other carriers in the US is a problem and missed opportunity. I'm getting comfortable with my EVO and my longing for an iPhone is starting to wane. 

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