“Consumer Reports” (http://www.consumerreports.com) — an independent organization that tests consumer products — says the Apple iPhone 4S is among the recommended models in their 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,” the publication says. “In special reception tests of the iPhone 4S that duplicated those we did on the iPhone 4, the newer phone did not display the same reception flaw, which involves a loss of signal strength when you touch a spot on the phone’s lower left side while you’re in an area with a weak signal.”

The iPhone 4S also did well in the standard tests of battery life by “Consumer Reports.” Like the iPhone 4, it scores Very Good overall on that attribute. And the iPhone 4S and new samples of the iPhone 4 have displayed no notable battery problems in additional special tests “Consumer Reports” carried out, though some owners have complained on user forums of short run times.