∞ RIM calls Apple's demo of BlackBerry antenna issue 'unacceptable'

During a special press conference held at Apple’s Cupertino, Calif. headquarters on Friday, Apple CEO Steve Jobs demoed how other smartphones also have the signal issues that have been closely associated with the iPhone 4. The demo didn’t go over well with RIM. “Apple’s attempt to draw RIM into Apple’s self-made debacle is unacceptable,” said RIM’s co-CEOs, Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie, in a statement. “Apple’s claims about RIM products appear to be deliberate attempts to distort the public’s understanding of an antenna design issue and to deflect attention from Apple’s difficult situation.”

In addition to showing signal problems with an HTC Droid Eris and a Samsung device, Jobs also showed the problem on a BlackBerry Bold 9700.

Responding to its customers, Apple offered to give away a free iPhone 4 case to anyone that already purchased an iPhone and to those that will purchase one until September 30. Jobs said the company would re-evaluate it at that time.

“One thing is for certain, RIM’s customers don’t need to use a case for their BlackBerry smartphone to maintain proper connectivity,” said Lazaridis and Balsillie. “Apple clearly made certain design decisions and it should take responsibility for these decisions rather than trying to draw RIM and others into a situation that relates specifically to Apple.”