OK, so now it gets serious.
I've already called Apple the World's Best Marketing Company. But they now have a PR nightmare on a level they have rarely known. It's now time to become the world's best company.
Ok, so Apple made a rare engineering mistake and the best marketing in the world won't change that fact.
So what do you do, Steve?
Simple. You come clean. That's the Apple image and you built it that way. So here is what you need to do, fast.
1. Admit your rare mistake. Have Jony do a video on what you learned. Apple and Ive get all due credit for great design but now it's time to take the bullet for poor design. People will trust you more next time. Apple thrives on that trust. No way will you get people lining up outside your stores for days if you don't rebuild it.
2. Fix the problem. In your new iPhone 4 (rev2) figure out how to use the user's finger to increase the signal strength instead of coupling it from one antenna to the other. Or at least change the design so the width of a human finger can't cross-couple the antennas (make a less conductive dead zone near the bands.)
3. Make it right. Create a new, limited edition "Early Adopter" silver bumper for the first 3 million iPhone 4 users and provide them free in your stores. Make it a big deal! Invite the customers to come into the store to get their special bumper and auto-enter them into a "thank you" contest. One winner wins one of EVERY APPLE PRODUCT in the store. Hire a street team to find customers using these limited edition bumpers for the next 60 days and give them $100 iTunes gift cards instantly. Give away $10M worth of iTunes cards (you'll make it all back anyway).
Steve, this is the same problem Toyota faced recently with its brakes (of course no one will die if they use their iPhone wrong) but you need to show the world how a customer-focused company takes care of its early adopters. You did this twice before: the iPology and the MobileMe Apology. You need to do it again.
Let your voice be heard. What do you think Apple should do?Update July 14: I had to...