What Could Apple do to Fix the iPhone 4 Performance Issues?

A few folks have asked me what Apple could to to fix the problems. As I wrote in earlier posts I think this is an antenna issue, that makes software fixes unlikely. It may be that the problem has a software component. For example, the signal strength bar display could be exaggerating the problem.

There may be a way to redesign the antenna to remove the problem without changing it much. In my opinion the dielectric properties of the hand are changing the capacitance between the metal bands on either side of the slot. That capacitance might not be a necessary part of the design. In that case it may be possible to solve the problem by making the plastic gap wider, that would reduce the capacitance in any scenario. If the capacitance is necessary though then things become more complex. It may be possible to move the sensitive area a little into the inside of the handset.

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