Apple iPad: Weak WiFi Tops User Complaints

Dennis Faas's picture

Apple's iPad may have sold hundreds of thousands of times over the course of its opening weekend, but that doesn't mean the new device is without its problems. Already Apple is feeling the sting from hundreds of user complaints about the iPad's weak WiFi abilities, reports say.

"[The] signal is weak, downloading anything is painfully slow and it will drop the signal and go offline every 5-10 minutes," complained user "mbell75" on Apple's support forum website early last week.

WiFi Trouble Forum Grows at Rapid Pace

In the past week and a half, a thread entitled "Weak wifi" has accumulated 547 replies comments and has been viewed 76,453 times on Apple's support site. Many posters complained that the device was having enormous trouble picking up wireless Internet signals, leading to frustrating bouts of connect and disconnect. (Source:

"It will work fine for a while, but show a low signal. Then, after a few minutes of use, my connection will drop completely and I will have to reset my WiFi radio," noted user "mlp8104".

In some cases it appears the iPad is failing to make a connection to any signal, ever. This despite the fact that users claim their Apple laptops tap into the connection without issue. "In our living room where laptops get a full signal, my iPad gets a very poor signal which is so bad that it even cuts completely out sometimes," said "Panjandrum". "I had to walk the iPad into the same room as my router [in order to] get a movie rental to download."

Users Press for Software Update

Many users are pressing for a software update, believing the issue to be an easy fix solved by a simple patch.

In response, Apple has posted a number of documents claiming to help the issue. One suggests users try tinkering with the settings on their wireless routers -- essentially side-stepping the problem and ignoring those who claim laptops are working just fine. Another document offered the handy advice, "Move closer to the WiFi router or hotspot." (Source:

Some critics point to previous issues with Apple and new hardware. Similar complaints were made about the MacBook Air's WiFi when that device launched two years ago. Some iPhone users complained that AT&T's network was insufficient during the smartphone's early days back in 2007.

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