The iPhone 4 Bumper Case was released in 2010 along with the iPhone 4. Unfortunately, this case was placed in the middle of a famous and rare Apple public relations issue, “Antennagate.” The design of this case is very simple, a plastic and rubber bumper that surrounds the outer edges of the iPhone 4 providing drop protection, a gripping-rubber lip that prevents the front and back of the iPhone 4 from making contact with a surface when placed flat, and a barrier that prevents holding the phone in a manner that may affect antenna performance.
MacWorld described the bumper case: “It consists of a stiff, plastic band that covers the entire metal edge of the iPhone 4, combined with relatively tough rubber around the front and rear edges to hold the Bumper in place. ”
Antennagate was a name given by the media to a phenomenon that was reported soon after the iPhone 4 release on June 24, 2010, where the cell phone signal would drop if the phone was gripped in a way that covered the integrated antenna. Apple’s reaction was to hold a press conference 22 days after the iPhone release, hosted by Steve Jobs, who confirmed the iPhone 4 issue (and mentioned the same issue was present on competitor phones), presented several customer purchasing and phone performance statistics, and then offered this iPhone 4 bumper case (in black) to customers for free via an app. The press conference was held on July 16, 2010, and cases began shipping in 3 weeks. Customers who had already purchased the iPhone 4 Bumper Case via credit card were given a refund.
In addition to black, Apple offered this case in orange, blue, pink, green, white, dark gray, and later, (PRODUCT)RED.
Sources: MacWorld (case program, review), PCWorld, AppleInsider