When Apple released the iPhone 4 on AT&T last year, a problem was discovered. Consumers noticed a significant drop in signal strength with a bare finger on the rim of the antenna gap. As consumer complaints grew, Consumer Reports refused to endorse the smartphone, stating that the signal loss was great enough to cause a disconnection in weak signal areas.

Apple’s correction of the problem was a rubber bumper for the rim of the antenna gap. Consumer Reports reacted unfavorably, calling it “less [than] consumer friendly in several respects.”

With the release of the new Verizon iPhone 4, Consumer Reports tested the device in several locations. The testers were instructed to put a finger over the antenna gap. In places with a strong signal, the signal was significantly reduced. In areas with a weak signal, calls were dropped altogether.

Consumer Reports states that, despite the fact that the smartphone has a high Rating with Consumer Reports, it will not be among the recommended smart phones. They believe that a very real possibility exists for users to experience a reduction in signal strength, possibly causing a disruption in service in weak signal areas.

Apple denies that the Consumer Reports lack of recommendation has had any effect on sales. According to Chief Executive Daniel S. Mead, Verizon Wireless sold more iPhone 4s in the initial launch than any other product in the carrier’s history. He stated that, while sales appear to be down in the actual stores, more than 60% of iPhone sales occurred online.