If Apple is right, and I think it is, all smartphones have antenna designs that attenuate signal strength when you hold it. One reason for that is the FCC that demands antennas to be designed toward the bottom to minimize radiation interference with our electrochemical neural system. Dumb phones like the clamshell Casio canU that I’m using doesn’t really have an antenna signal attenuation problem. The reason is because the antenna is located at the very top, where the hand almost never goes when talking on the phone. The FCC didn’t demand antenna design restrictions five years ago.
It is also interesting that South Korea is the only country original on the list that will not be getting the iPhone 4 at the end of this month. Korea is concerned about Apple’s antenna design on the iPhone 4. KTF the exclusive carrier for the iPhone is worried about the potential backlash of dissatisfied customers because of the antenna attenuation problem. But Korea shouldn’t be worried at all since the entire country including subways and mountaintops are covered with cell towers. There is almost nowhere in Korea where you don’t get full signal strength. I don’t think the iPhone 4 will suffer antenna signal attenuation in Korea much at all.
But maybe we shouldn’t be looking at smartphones anyway. Old dumb phones might actually turn out to be the smarter choice if you need your phone to make reliable calls. Of course the potential drawback of a dumb phone is that it might make you… dumb.