Consumer Reports, a leading U.S. magazine on product reviews and ratings, recommended on Tuesday Apple's latest iPhone 4S.
"The Apple iPhone 4S is among the recommended models in our newly updated Ratings of smart phones. Apple's newest smart phone performed very well in our tests, and while it closely resembles the iPhone 4 in appearance, it doesn't suffer the reception problem we found in its predecessor in special tests in our labs," said an article posted on the magazine's website.
It said iPhone 4S scores higher in the rating than the iPhone 4, thanks to enhancements like an upgraded camera, a faster dual-core processor and the Siri voice activated feature.
As for the complaints on the battery drain of iPhone 4S, Consumer Reports said the handset did very well in its standard tests of battery life and additional special tests. It said it will retest the phone when Apple updates its latest mobile operating system iOS 5.
Last week, Apple said the culprit of the battery drain is a few bugs in the system and will update the software to address the problem.
However, the magazine said iPhone 4S did not outscore the best new Android-based phones in its ratings. Phones that topped the iPhone 4S include Samsung Galaxy S II, the Motorola Droid Bionic and LG Thrill. These models boast larger displays than the iPhone 4S and run on faster 4G networks.
Last July, Consumer Reports did not give the official blessing to the previous iPhone 4, citing problems with the phone's reception. It said at that time when finger or hand touched a spot on the phone's lower left side, the signal can significantly degrade enough to cause users to lose their connection if they were in an area with a weak signal.
Apple soon acknowledged the issue as its late chief executive officer Steve Jobs made an announcement in person saying "we are not perfect," and offered iPhone 4 owners a free case to address the issue. However, Consumer Reports refused to recommend the phone, citing Apple's later decision to discontinue its free-case program.