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New Macbook Air - wifi connectivity problems

444124 Views 2,047 Replies Latest reply: Apr 14, 2014 1:09 PM by Garryatco RSS Branched to a new discussion.
  • Cloudi Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 7, 2013 1:44 PM (in response to Oii_spb)

    . I agree Oii_spb:----->

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    Apple MUST FIX THE PROBLEM ASAP, or MBA will be a poison for this company.

     

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  • Cloudi Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 7, 2013 1:45 PM (in response to Cloudi)

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  • Cloudi Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 7, 2013 2:01 PM (in response to lissbell)

    Hi lissbell!

     

    Your suggestion does make sense to me, thanks. 

     

    If it's poor QA on the boards (are they built in more than one place?), it would be harder for Apple to simply recall the 2013 MBAs (than if it was the WiFi hardware).

     

    What do you think about the comments recently in this thread about the bluetooth hardware being both physically close to the WiFi hardware and in some way associated witht the WiFi drop outs?

     

    As you know, I'm one of the lucky ones with a fully functional zippy new MBA (see earlier for specs and stats).  For the record, my blutooth connectivity works just fine.

     

    Also, I have no difficulty at all with WiFi is busy locations using WiFi, both public and private and with and without security (of all types now I've had a chance to go to numerous locations).

  • DougsPlace Level 2 Level 2 (230 points)

    the recent post about bluetooth and WiFi sharing the same housing is the only direct reference to Genius pinpointing hardware issues. The Haswell power saving features have been mentioned before.  More and more it feels like hardware glitch. Rolling out Haswell & AC WiFi simultaneously was daring.

     

    The vexing question is why Apple cannot collate which new MBAs are working flawlessly with part sourcing.

     

    Some folks are getting as promised - 12 hour battery life, faster WiFi, regardless of Bluetooth on or off.

     

    Some customers are not getting as promised, fix isn't working for all.

     

    I'm one of the people holding off on buying.   Last spring I was thinking MBPr, but the fan anomaly is a thread like this one, so that put me off the 13" MBPr. Apple released a fix or the 15" but not 13".

     

    If they acknowledge a hardware defect, another poster is correct - there will be litigation.  As a shareholder that wouldn't be a happy place for me.

     

    As an Apple customer for 25 years, never before so frustrating and disappointing. Quality control needs attention.

  • zqx321 Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 7, 2013 2:35 PM (in response to lissbell)

    I'm not so sure that it's as simple as replacing a defective Airport card. My understanding is that the MBA subsystem modules are all soldered to the motherboard -- i.e., they're a part of the motherboard, not on separate boards. The fact that the most powerful systems (e.g., i7/8GB/512GB) are custom built in China lends some credence to this theory. If it's true, then Apple would have to swap the motherboard or, if there are many connections to items off the motherboard (screen, wifi antenna, etc.), then they would have to swap the entire computer.

     

    Of course, I could be wrong about this: I've never seen the inside of an MBA!

  • dogschool Calculating status...
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    Aug 7, 2013 3:51 PM (in response to zqx321)

    I guess mine is just erratic. So far it has worked well today(at my office), but last night it was totally unusable. It would get hung on page changes. I had to reboot for it to work again, only to have it disconnect a minute later. I really like the machine in every other way, but the wifi issue is a deal killer. If they do not come up with a fix soon I will do what I have to do. I am not going to put up with an $1100 brick.

  • mrjoeblo Calculating status...
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    Aug 7, 2013 6:35 PM (in response to vhkim)

    I'm experiencing similar problems. 2013 Macbook Air (i7/8GB/512GB) with Software Update 1.0 applied.

    Like the many others, I get occasional network dropouts, especially during bandwidth intensive activities like streaming. These usually last around 60 seconds or so, although wifi stays connected during the outage. Changing routers makes no difference; I've experienced the same symptoms with Ubiquiti, Airport Extreme, and even a MiFi.

     

    But being sporadic, these problems are hard to prove and diagnose. What I've also figured out is that ping times on the new Air are very jittery and often show large latencies. I ping my first-hop router (no internet involved).

     

    My 2013 Macbook Air yields these sorts of stats (no other internet activity):

    --- 192.168.1.1 ping statistics ---

    50 packets transmitted, 50 packets received, 0.0% packet loss

    round-trip min/avg/max/stddev = 0.893/44.433/102.245/34.042 ms

     

    While at the same time, an older 2011 Macbook Air yields these:

    --- 192.168.1.1 ping statistics ---

    50 packets transmitted, 50 packets received, 0.0% packet loss

    round-trip min/avg/max/stddev = 0.823/2.250/4.214/0.903 ms

     

    Note that even though the mins are roughly the same, average, max, and stddev of the new Air is terrible. This is reliably reproducible, and I don't have to question whether I'm crazy or not every time. I brought this to the Genius Bar, they acknowledged the problem, but offered no fix.

     

    Anyway, thought I'd share this as it will be a reliable indicator when/if Apple fixes the problem, and curious if others are seeing similar symptoms.

  • computerconfuser Calculating status...
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    Aug 7, 2013 8:58 PM (in response to vhkim)

    I miss Steve Jobs he would know what to do about all this.

     

     

  • raducan.mihai Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Currently Being Moderated
    Aug 7, 2013 9:45 PM (in response to vhkim)

    I just bought (a week ago) a 13" MBA  in Japan. Until now it is working flawlessly with the update installed, tested with a few routers (only one of them Apple router and the others unknown brands- University wifi). I had no time to properly test it before installing the update, so I don't know if it worked ok before the update. Even if mine works as it should, I can feel your pain and I hope Apple will fix this problem, because it is unacceptable for a USD 1000 computer to have wifi problems.

  • WooptyDooo Calculating status...
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    Aug 7, 2013 11:33 PM (in response to vhkim)

    Maybe this may help someone get at least some form of connection that have problems getting one in Windows using bootcamp.

     

    After playing around with the wireless settings in the router I found that the Air can connect to a sucky 11a or 11g (802.11a) 20Mhz 54Mbps connection only. All the rest are incompatible. So no 802.11n at all for me and 54Mps only.

     

     

    As for my router it's a tp-link N type router, I have updated the firmware and all. Dunno maybe there are some other setting changes I can try ?

  • eppes Calculating status...
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    Aug 8, 2013 1:24 AM (in response to WooptyDooo)

    You shouldn't change settings. You should bring the crappy laptop back so that they get the message: FIX IT!

  • wifiguru Level 2 Level 2 (230 points)
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    Aug 8, 2013 1:25 AM (in response to WooptyDooo)

    What router model are you using ?

  • benoitfromganshoren Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
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    Aug 8, 2013 1:50 AM (in response to wifiguru)

    Please allow me to ive a thought about worrying about the router.

     

    As far as I am concerned, I admit that the type of router, or the config of the router, might make a difference. I only have the intermittent wifi issue when I am on my home network, and up to now, I did not have the same issue with other routers (but I did not have the opportunity many other routers, and the ones I used where not used during a very long time). If the type of router or the router config plays a role, it might be interesting to know, from a troubleshooting perspective.

     

    But again, in my case, other machines (Iphone, Windows PC, Linux PC, Ipod, another MBA from 2011, a Macbook pro) work very wel my home network, while my brand new MBA 13 " I7 512 G 8G Ram erratically loses the connection and refuses to reconnect. So, even if I would be able to fix the issue at router level, this would not mean that I would not have the issue with other routers when "on the go". And I do not expect every router administrator to kindly tweak their infrastructure in order to accomodate the MBA mid 2013 Apple happens to put on the market!.

     

    In my opinion, fixing the issue at router level would just be a temporary local work around, but would hide the very core of the problem: apparently, at least some new MBA do not work properly with infrastructure that works perfectly with most other devices. And that is not acceptable.

     

    Let's also put it bluntly. In the ITC world, this is an old trick of many manufacturers to blame external causes, not their product. It is allways the other products that cause problems! Apple is certainly no exception here.

     

    As agreed with Applecare, I still have to let my MBA hardware tested at the local authorized reseller, I just need time to do that, after all, I bought this machine because I needed it! Anyway, I do not expect many results, as the issue is intermittent, and might not occur on every router!

     

    I am really deeply disappointed by this new machine, and as a result, by Apple as a whole. I entered the Apple "ecosystem" a couple of years ago, and I start wondering if I did not make a very big mistake. I am considering what it would take to gradually drop Apple altogether, I mean Iphone, Macbook airs & pro, iTunes, iCloud, iMatch, everything! Not an easy one. Apple is good at hooking us, but leaves us in the dark when problems arise!

  • lissbell Calculating status...
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    Aug 8, 2013 4:13 AM (in response to Cloudi)

    Hi Cloudi, thank you for your ongoing efforts to urge Apple to remember its customers.

     

    It's possible those antenna wires could be a problem. Bluetooth and wifi are served from the same card and the two wires are very close, They would, at least for me, be much more annoying to fix than a faulty Airport card. The tight space could be causing crimping of a wire and lead to poor data transmission. Crosstalk might also be a possibility if the wires are much too close together and insufficiently shielded, though it's hard for me to believe it would have been designed that sloppily. Nonetheless, if the actual problem requires the antenna wires to be replaced or rerouted, I can imagine Apple hesitating to do this--especially if the fundamental problem is cramped space. It could be hard to control the shifts of those wires in their small space when the panel is back in place.

     

    If, however, the card is to blame, they really should swap it out. The tear-down I saw of this system showed the Airport card being released with relative ease. Once the antenna wires are disconnected, the card can be pulled from its slot: http://www.ifixit.com/Teardown/MacBook+Air+13-Inch+Mid+2013+Teardown/15042/

     

    I have tried to figure out what's so different about your machine that keeps it functioning smoothly, but I only have vague guesses. I think you purchased yours a bit earlier than average. You may be the recipient of a high-performing logicboard, an Airport card from a good batch, a glitch-free battery, or especially well-routed antenna wiring simply because more care was taken with the component manufacturing and the assembly of the earliest batches. People get complacent over time.

     

    I still think this is a computer with great potential and your excellent MBA proves it. I do hope Apple is able to get the compromised machines in full working order very soon.

  • artichoke9 Calculating status...
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    Aug 9, 2013 12:06 PM (in response to vhkim)

    I think Apple must address this as a hardware issue. Software patches are not going to fix the basic problem. I believe the issue is with the Haswell chip and its relationship to the WiFi hardware. This becomes fairly obvious if one looks at the Sony VAIO Pro Ultrabook which seems to use all of the same chips/hardware as the MBA and is having boatloads of the same WiFi connectivity problems (using Windows 8). Have a look at those threads and it will be obvious there is a problem that is not software or OS related. I was interested in one or the other computers but neither one has been able to come up with a fix.

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