Apple Hit With Multiple iPhone 4 Lawsuits

Just a week after the international launch of Apple's iPhone 4, which the company recently touted as the most successful rollout in its history, Apple is facing multiple lawsuits filed in U.S. courts seeking class-action status over reception issues.

In Maryland, two iPhone 4 owners filed a suit against Apple and AT&T Wednesday, accusing the companies of negligence, misrepresentation and other alleged offenses. In Texas, a similar suit was filed Tuesday against Apple. And in California, between Tuesday and Wednesday, three separate suits were filed against the Cupertino, Calif., tech company.

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Apple did not immediately respond to a request for comment and when contacted by, an A&T spokeswoman said the company didn't have a comment at this time.

The filings are from iPhone 4 owners who say that holding the phone in a certain way blocks the external antenna, leading to dropped calls and reception issues.

Apple 'Stunned' to Find Reception Error

While the old phone had an internal antenna, the new model has an external one. According to tech bloggers and iPhone users, call reception apparently drops when the user's palm covers the bottom left corner of the phone.

After the first complaints started surfacing online, Apple quickly responded, releasing a statement that said, "Gripping any phone will result in some attenuation of its antenna performance, depending on the placement of the antennas."

The company today released another statement on the iPhone 4 reception issue. Apple repeated its claim that gripping any phone in certain ways could reduce reception, but said it was surprised to learn that its phone was overstating signal strength.

"Upon investigation, we were stunned to find that the formula we use to calculate how many bars of signal strength to display is totally wrong. Our formula, in many instances, mistakenly displays 2 more bars than it should for a given signal strength," the company said. Apple said it would release a free software update in a few weeks to fix the problem.

Law Firms Launch Investigations Into iPhone 4 Antenna Problems

Earlier this week, a California law firm raised the specter of a class action suit when it issued a call for customers experiencing the widely discussed antenna issue.

After the Sacramento firm Kershaw, Cutter & Ratinoff LLP received more than 1,000 responses from iPhone 4 customers, it said it filed a suit Tuesday against Apple and AT&T in the North District of California.

"If the case resolves in favor of iPhone 4 customers on a class-wide basis, each member of the class will receive formal notice of the case under the supervision of the court that oversees the case," the firm said on its blog.

According to Bloomberg, a New Jersey resident and a Massachusetts resident also filed separate complaints Wednesday in federal court in San Francisco.

Daniel Ward, an attorney with Ward & Ward PLLC in Washington, DC, told that a customer inquiry preceded the Apple lawsuit his firm filed Wednesday in Maryland.

Maryland Plaintiffs: Apple Sold 'Defective' Device

The complaint, filed by Ward's firm and Charles A. Gilman, LLC, based in Timonium, Maryland, names two Maryland plaintiffs, Kevin McCaffrey and Linda Wrinn, and alleges that Apple sold iPhone 4 owners "defective" devices.

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