This was the official response, before the big press conference, where they gave everyone free cases.
Gripping any mobile phone will result in some attenuation of its antenna performance, with certain places being worse than others depending on the placement of the antennas. This is a fact of life for every wireless phone. If you ever experience this on your iPhone 4, avoid gripping it in the lower left corner in a way that covers both sides of the black strip in the metal band, or simply use one of many available cases.
Also SJ never, ever said "holding it wrong", he said "just avoid holding that way"
Clearly antennagate was a non issue, the iphone 4 was hugely popular and eventually they stopped giving away bumpers, but still sold the phones.