CR defends its 'can't recommend' iPhone 4 rating

Consumer Reports is at it again, this time blogging in defense of its "can't recommend" rating for the iPhone 4.

After yesterday's devastating news that Consumer Reports can't recommend the iPhone 4 because of its well-documented antenna flaw, comes a follow-up post from CR defending its statements.

While the post sounds a little defensive, the almighty CR sticks to its guns about Apple's antenna flaw, stating "we think it's the company's responsibility to provide the fix—at no extra cost to consumers."

Our tests, conducted in our labs using controlled signals, confirm growing anecdotal indications that the iPhone 4's problems are anything but illusory. Our tests found that when your finger or hand touches a spot on the phone's lower left side—an easy thing to do—the signal can significantly degrade enough to cause you to lose your connection altogether if you're in an area with a weak signal. We tested several other AT&T phones the same way, including the iPhone 3G S and the Palm Pre. None of those phones had the significant signal-loss problems of the iPhone 4.

The funniest part of CR's latest blog post is its stopgap fix for the issue: "applying duct tape to the phone." I'm sure that the thought of putting a piece of ugly grey duct tape on the perfect i4 might send Jony Ive into a fit of rage. Maybe to the point of actually designing a better antenna scheme next time?

CR throws the dog a bone near the end of its latest missive, stating that the iPhone 4 landed at the top of its Ratings of smart phones, noting that it did not feel comfortable listing a phone with such a problem as "recommended," and therefore have withheld that tag.