Unresponsive iPhone touch screens

Unresponsive iPhone touch screens

Summary: A friend wrote that the whole top section of his iPhone is dead. It doesn't register any touch at all.

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A friend wrote that the whole top section of his iPhone is dead. It doesn't register any touch at all. Investigating further, it appears that some iPhone touchscreens have started failing. Symptoms begin with lack of touch response in either the top or bottom strip. The problem is being referred to as dead strip.

IntoMobile.com says that Nomura International analyst Richard Windsor released a note to clients indicating that the iPhone’s “dead strip” display problem could become more widespread.

Apple bought the rights to the screen technology used in the iPhone from a Finnish firm. Finnish firm reported that usage led to the same unresponsive display problems after some time. Apparently, 3 to 6 months of “extensive use” would start to degrade the technology and cause a lose of sensitivity to touch-inputs. This suggests that the relatively new iPhone fleet in the US could start to exhibit similar problems with time.

Forum users at Apple Insider and MacRumors are complaining of a “dead strip” starting to plague some iPhones. The “dead strip” on iPhone's multi-touch display loses sensitivity to all touch-inputs. Explains one forum user,

First the very bottom of the screen went out so I could not hit the space-bar on the keyboard, or change to the number/character screen. Then it got worse a few days later, now I cannot hit any of the main function buttons.

Topics: Hardware, iPhone, Mobility

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33 comments
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  • How many more Apple hardware failures will we see...

    It isn't five minutes since the Mac battery recall, and already we are seeing the iPhone is now iPhailed.

    With Apple, are the users paying the extra premium for better quality products, or rather is it just Appletalk for shiny overpriced toys...?

    At least the warranty will cover this one. Who knows, maybe SJ will chuck in a $50.00 rebate on the next Apple purchase.

    On a side note:
    I wonder if the iPod Touch will also suffer the same fate?
    Scrat
    • iWonder

      Well, let's see, from the tone of your post, I'd say that you already know the answer to your rhetorical question, making any reply pointless.

      But for what it's worth - I fully expect Apple to continue to have hardware and software issues, much like any other vendor or developer. That's called realism, based on 26 years of writing software and using computers.

      Over the same period I've also seen Apple deliver a number of game-changing products (the Apple II, original Mac, OS X, the iPod, and the iPhone - you could also argue NextStep). Mostly too expensive for me to have been able to afford, but I wouldn't malign what Apple did.

      The Apple II caused IBM to react with the IBM PC.
      Mac OS (more than Atari or Commodore) caused MS to react with Windows. Both were dismissed as 'toys' in their day, before defining what came after.

      So lets say it's an 'innovation premium'. Or you can wait a few years for cheaper copies.
      JulesLt
      • I'll wait for cheaper copies

        [i]So lets say it's an 'innovation premium'. Or you can wait a few years for cheaper copies.[/i]

        I can't wait for companies other than Apple to release touchscreen phones.

        snicker, smirk :)
        NonZealot
        • Wait no more...

          [b]I can't wait for companies other than Apple to release touchscreen phones.

          snicker, smirk [/b]

          Gee.. Motorola released their A1200 - which runs Linux - and has a touch screen back in November 2005. Let's see.. that's about a year and a half BEFORE the Jesus phone...
          Wolfie2K3
          • Jesus phone - LOL!!! OMG that's great!!!!!!!!

            nt
            ItsTheBottomLine
      • Put the iCrack pipe down!

        [b]The Apple II caused IBM to react with the IBM PC.
        Mac OS (more than Atari or Commodore) caused MS to react with Windows. Both were dismissed as 'toys' in their day, before defining what came after. [/b]

        More like all the little guys who were doing CP/M cause IBM to jump into the game with the IBM PC. The Apple II family were great for what they did - games, educational stuff, etc.. But Apple wasn't exactly popular in the business scene.

        On the other hand, Kaypro, Osborne, Compaq - yes, the same one that's now a part of HP - to name a few, were out there doing business type things like word processing using WordStar, databases using dBase II, spreadsheets using Visicalc.

        When IBM jumped into the desktop scene, they went to Microsoft - who found a guy who was creating a 16 bit version of CP/M which became known as PC DOS.

        The bottom line: the original IBM PC was never aimed at the same market as the Apple II, III or any other Apple computer of it's day. It was aimed squarely at the small business front, taking aim directly at the market held by the 8 bit CP/M market. NO ONE was going to spend $5,000 for an IBM PC and put it in his home. You DO know what IBM stands for, right? International [i]BUSINESS[/i] Machines.

        It took the PC a few years to expand beyond the business market and delve into the education and game market.

        The origins of Windows and the Mac OS owe their roots to a company known as Xerox - specifically the P.A.R.C (Palo Alto Research Center) division who developed the original concept of the GUI. Both Jobs and Gates were there to see the demo of the original STAR computer OS. The Atari computer and the Commodore systems were all command line driven - just like the Apple II, Apple III, CP/M based systems as well as the IBM PC. They had NOTHING to do with the development of a GUI.

        Apple had only ONE major advantage over Microsoft in their development of the GUI... Apple hired the guy who developed it from Xerox P.A.R.C. That's why Apple's first Mac came out in 1984 and Windows 1.0 wasn't released until a year later in 1985.

        If you're going to give credit, give it where it's really due. Rewriting history won't work given there are far too many sources that will give you the real story and they're only a Google away...
        Wolfie2K3
        • Very good and dead on...

          I did a paper in college on this very topic, of why Apple will not survive in the business world (and still doesn't today). They had their shot with the Mac and just f'd it up. These puppies out here who think WIndows copied the Mac, it was both who copied Xerox - I love it... In fact when Apple tried to sue MS ( I think that's right) they brought up Xerox and the whole thing just disappeared. These newbies do not know how desperate Apple was at one time. Remember things go in waves and the pendulum swings... 5 years from now will be very interesting.
          ItsTheBottomLine
      • Oh I think Apple is needed...but

        I think his comments are for those like pagan jm and i8thecat who "type" like Apple will rule the world one day, not you. And are eager to bend over the table (MS has it fanboi's too) with a little KY because Jobs is a little randy today and needs some satisfying. Craming apple down someone throat because you use it (and Windows/Linux too) is what is sooooo annoying. Thus why they are very much like religous zealots. I was turned off from Apple in the 80's 90's and laugh at the fact that they f'd up the business model and could be the dominant player today. In addition they damn near went under several times, under jobs watch on a few. But IT needs Apple and Linux. I prefer WinTel(AMD) but that's it. I think it's more fun for people to get the zealots are riled up...it's kind of funny. Apple has their place and I don't think they want to get any bigger other then organic growth.

        What I find more interesting is MS cares more about Linux than Apple. Considering they - like any corporation - are looking to stay in business I wonder if they see a more potential from Linux (like Ubunutu) than Apple... a very interesting paradigm that will need researching.
        ItsTheBottomLine
  • Again... bleeding technology....

    Pay a premium price to be the first to have it and find all of the bugs... No thanks... I will let others overpay to be the first... once all the bugs are figured out I will reconsider. Generally that is how I approach any new technology.. I won't be buying an Iphone ever though... not for me... A simple cheap throw away cell phone is all I need.
    redtrain65
    • Touch Screens are not "bleeding"

      Touch screen technology is not "bleeding edge" technology. Apple's implementation of the multi-point sensing software used to track and respond to more than 1 touch is a new and long overdue inovation, but the hardware side of this equation has been around since the 80s. One of the largest roadblocks to the widespread application of touchscreens has always been accuracy and durability. This is why an entire generation of products came with the "stylus". (Palm, Newton, Handspring, Notepad laptops, ect...) Apple seemed to have done a superb job addressing the "accuracy" issue. Now if they can just get past the "durability" hurdle.
      Scubajrr
      • yes they are ...

        They're bleeding some suckers dry. When will people ever learn that Apple's motto is "There's one born every 0.1 seconds". They spend more on advertising a single product than they do on product development and testing. My ancient Siemens mobile phone is bad enough - it crashes regularly - why would I want a device which has even more failure points?
        zoroaster
        • But they are satisfied suckers

          Seems the latest figures show the Apple iPhone with an 82% customer satisfaction rating, as compared to 51% for the nearest competator.

          Interesting reasoning you are using: my product sucks so the other one must suck as well. I bet you use Windows?
          MarcB_z
  • Wow, Apple consumers face a lot of hurdles!!!

    If the battery doesn't die on you (oops, can't replace it, need a new phone!!), and the next Apple update doesn't falsely identify your phone as "modified" and brick it, and no hacker breaks into your completely unsecured (and running as root!!!) OS, you now have to worry about the screen going dead after [i]3 to 6 months of ???extensive use???[/i]. Funny how my 5 year old iPaq's battery is still strong, the screen is still perfect, and there is [b]no[/b] malware in the wild targetting it. Plus I can install whatever programs I want into it (don't need Jobs' permission first!!) and no firmware updates have ever bricked it just because I had the [b]audacity[/b] to install PocketPlayer on it.

    Ahhh, I love the freedom associated with owning products made by [b]anyone[/b] but Apple!!

    snicker, smirk :)
    NonZealot
    • Now, Now.. Let's be fair...

      [b]If the battery doesn't die on you (oops, can't replace it, need a new phone!!), and the next Apple update doesn't falsely identify your phone as "modified" and brick it, and no hacker breaks into your completely unsecured (and running as root!!!) OS, you now have to worry about the screen going dead after 3 to 6 months of ???extensive use???. Funny how my 5 year old iPaq's battery is still strong, the screen is still perfect, and there is no malware in the wild targetting it. Plus I can install whatever programs I want into it (don't need Jobs' permission first!!) and no firmware updates have ever bricked it just because I had the audacity to install PocketPlayer on it.

      Ahhh, I love the freedom associated with owning products made by anyone but Apple!![/b]

      The Jesus phone battery CAN be replaced... Sort of.. You bop on down to your local Apple temple, er, store, tell the genuiouses that your battery's toast and they'll be happy to

      a.) box it up for you,
      b.) send it into the factory for a new battery,
      c.) charge you $79.99 for the new battery and replacement,
      d.) charge you an additional $29.99 for a loaner Jesus Phone,
      e.) charge you whatever shipping/handling costs go with it.

      So that new battery is gonna set you back at least $110...

      I suppose that's still cheaper than buying a new Jesus phone though...
      Wolfie2K3
    • and yet - snicker snort

      they don't seem to mind so much. The latest figures show iPhone owners with an 82% product satisfaction rate.

      Sure you are free to own something else, and free to be less satisfied...

      Snicker snort
      MarcB_z
  • RE: Unresponsive iPhone touch screens

    It's more than a dead STRIP - the whole screen is dead to women (like me) with artificial nails! Tried a friend's IPhone and it would NOT work with the nails. My PDA works just fine though!
    dryredw9
    • Steve Jobs has short nails....

      therefor you should too. Otherwise, you aren't worthy of his products.
      NonZealot
      • Well, I guess there are a lot of people with short nails

        since the iPhone is currently enjoying the highest customer satisfaction rating over all the other phones. 82% at least.
        MarcB_z
        • One trick pony

          Come on, Marc. Come up with something else.

          This is the third time you have posted exactly this retort.

          How about the cool factor? How about the supposed innovation? How about the sleek, sexy whatever....

          Give us something else, anything else. Satisfaction rate isn't really that telling. It doesn't take much to make most people happy.
          laura.b
  • ummm....

    you mean like Palm, HTC, Motorola, Nokia, HP, and almost every other phone manufacturer??
    anidnmeno