Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 7 August 2020

iPhone could suffer after users sleep in

Alarm clock glitch the latest setback for popular smartphone.

A glitch with Apple's iPhone alarm clock left many users sleeping in on their first day back at work in the UAE.

The iPhone helped to put the name of Apple, the world's second-most valuable publicly traded company, into the spotlight. But the technical failure, the latest glitch for the smartphone, may not be well received by investors.

A fault with the technology may have prevented alarms from working on January 1 and yesterday, said the company, based in California. All alarms will work properly from today, Apple said. Apple's shares closed 0.3 per cent down at $322.56 on Friday on the NASDAQ stock exchange, but the impact of the glitch will not be felt until today's trading.

Local analysts said that if problems persist, it could have an impact on the performance of telecommunications operators that dominate the iPhone market.

"If these small problems here and there continue happening, there will be a story and people will think it's not worth it with the hassle and move to BlackBerry," said Farouk Miah, an analyst who covers telecoms at NCB Capital in Saudi Arabia.

The performance of BlackBerry and iPhone is inherently linked to the success of their network providers. In Saudi Arabia, Mobily is the main provider of the iPhone and Saudi Telecoms Company offers the BlackBerry, Mr Miah said.

"Whoever is dominant in the iPhone market will suffer," he said.

Concerns that the iPhone 4's antenna design might be flawed may cost the company up to 20 per cent of potential sales in the US, Gene Munster, an analyst with Piper Jaffray, wrote in a September report.

In July, Steve Jobs, the Apple chief executive, offered users of the smartphone free rubber cases to alleviate reception problems and dropped calls that caused Consumer Reports magazine to withhold its recommendation for the phone.

* with Bloomberg

fhalime@thenational.ae

Updated: January 3, 2011 04:00 AM

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