Monday, December 1, 2014

Apple I-Pad WiFi Connectivity Weak link in a Great Product


Did Apple lose it's way with their I-Pad?

At home my wife's I-Pad works great at close distance within our home but here is the problem. In our RV at an RV park I have no WiFi problem, in most cases, with the WiFi. Her (wife) I-Pad connection might be ok but rarely as  good as the Laptop and at times unusable. Apple knows this problem (poor reception) exists and knowing the philosophy of Apple (see next section) I wonder how Apple justifies this to themselves and really and smugly blames the router, the user, the distance, protocols, third-party equipment and would probably blame witches if they could. They would never give their loyal users a real solution.

Their original philosophy and what set Apple up as a real innovator in the personal computer arena was their philosophy and the belief that they made using a personal computer easy for the user (User Friendly). They failed horribly with the I-Pad by overlooking the connection issue while presenting a really wonderful piece of equipment. Rather than solve the problem they have ignored it and hope their reputation will overcome the shortcoming.

The Apple Philosophy:    
1. Craft, Above All (How it looks)
2. Empathy, an intimate connection with the feelings of the customer
3. Focus, eliminate all of the unimportant opportunities
4. Impute, in a creative, professional manner, we will impute the desired qualities
5. Friendliness, Apple has made cutting-edge devices seem friendly, and that’s a design strategy specifically intended to appeal to novice consumers and anyone overwhelmed by the capabilities of a computer.

"Apple posted a Knowledge Base article, pertaining to these issues. Not only does the article make suggestions for a remedy, it gives legitimacy to the fact that Apple considers this a very real issue.
What You Can Do: Apple comes up with a more definitive explanation and fix for this problem:

1) having a third-party Wi-Fi router that supports both the 2.4-GHz and 5-GHz bands may be subject to a connectivity problem. It suggests that users can setup different SSID's for each band's network and to ensure that each network uses the same security type (WEP, WPA or WPA2.)
2) Update Your Router's Firmware. Before attempting to connect an iPad to a home network, make sure that you have the latest version of the firmware to ensure that the router is functioning at full capability. This is usually done within the router's included software.

3) Change The Router's Location. Do you have your router positioned in close proximity to equipment that could be causing interference? Microwaves, cordless phones, baby monitors, wireless keyboards, and Bluetooth devices can muddy a W-Fi signal.

4) Set Your Router To Operate On One 802.11 Standard. Most current routers support not only 802.11n, but a, b, and g as well. Set your router to operate exclusively on the greatest standard available, and do the same with the wireless devices on your network. The iPad ships with support for 802.11n, so you should have your router match that if possible.

5) Change Your Router's Security Encryption. Typically, security isn't something that should be experimented with, but when attempting to boost network performance, it may be necessary. There's no question that WPA and WPA2 encryption is more secure than WEP, but the jury's still out about which encryption method can slow a network down more (some believe it's WEP and others WPA). If you have either currently deployed in your home network, try changing to a different encryption setting and see if that makes any difference in your connectivity. Apple also recommends that you use the same security settings across the entire network.

6) Rename Your Networks. Apple makes the somewhat odd suggestion that users rename their networks. "Create separate Wi-Fi network names to identify each band. This can be done easily by appending one or more characters to the current network name. Example: Add a G to the 802.11b/g network name and an N to the 802.11n network name.""

"This is surely the so-called pea in the princess' mattress, at least where the iPad's launch is concerned. It's hard to know where the blame lies at this time. While it's understandable that Apple is bearing the brunt of the complaints for their device's perceived connectivity issues, the problems could very well be an issue with third-party router vendors not releasing or pushing out firmware updates in time for the iPad's release. Here's hoping for a true fix from router vendors and/or Apple in the immediate future. In the meanwhile, try the tips above, and let us know if they helped you." www.pcmag.com

1 comment:

Paul Viel said...

Since posting this we moved our RV 6 feet forward and now have a good connection. We did not move closer to the tower but a better line of sight. This does not change things a lot but points out the difference between the i-Pad WiFi and our Acer Laptop. I still think, if Apple hasn't already improved the WiFi capability they need to ASAP.