For some early adopters, Wi-Fi reception problems with their new iPads

By , Mar 21, 2012

In addition to the new iPad getting a bit warm when playing graphics-intensive games, it would appear that an unknown portion of early adopters are also having issues with Wi-Fi reception. A growing thread on Apple’s support forum is filled with reports describing a range of difficulties with the iPad’s wireless networking capabilities.

According to a bunch of disgruntled users, the new iPad has trouble maintaining a reliable wireless connection in places with strong signal. It also exhibits flaky connection that constantly drops or has no reception at all. Apple has not yet responded to these complaints at the time of this writing…

The thread begins with a user describing his Wi-Fi woes:

I am in a hotel with my laptop and new ipad3. The laptop wifi reception is as strong as it gets, but the iPad only registers a weak signal. Anyone else having similar problems? Any suggestions?

Another user chimed in:

MacBook Pro as well as iPhone 4S show ‘Full Fan’ — new iPad (16GB Wi-Fi) shows ‘one dot’ or just flat drops the Wi-Fi connection (and is often unable to search and find it).

Another one:

Same problem. Have the Decorah Eagles live cam running on my MacPro, Mac desktop and Mac Air on home network – no problem. The new Ipad – continually loading with occasional brief connection.

Some affected folks who talked to AppleCare representatives or support staff at Apple’s retail stores got a replacement device that works without a hiccup. But then, others claim that all replacement iPads they’d been issued continued to exhibit weak Wi-Fi reception.

Now, this could be a rehash of a similar issue plaguing a small subset of the original iPad owners, later fixed with a firmware update from Apple. Unfortunately, it’s too early to figure out whether Wi-Fi woes with the new iPad are hardware- or software-related. A teardown analysis of the third-generation iPad shows a Broadcom BCM4330 chip that Apple also used in the new 1080p Apple TV.

This piece of silicon provides the new iPad and Apple TV with Wi-Fi 802.11 a/b/g/n networking with dual-band support for both 2.4GHz and 5GHz networks and integrated Bluetooth 4.0+HS and FM transceiver.

According to iFixit, the second-generation iPad packs in a Broadcom BCM43291HKUBC Bluetooth/Wi-Fi/FM tuner silicon. This is the same chip found inside the original iPad and iPhone 4. Now, it’s indeed possible that upgrading the wireless networking hardware has resulted in Wi-Fi reception issues for some.

That being said, here’s to the hoping this issue stems from a software flaw. When Apple released iOS 5 last October, people similarly complained that the operating system was causing their devices to lose Wi-Fi connectivity. Eventually, subsequent iOS updates gradually eradicated this annoyance.

Have you been experiencing Wi-Fi connectivity issues with your new iPad? If so, we’d love to hear from you in the comments below!

  • Share:
  • Follow:
  • http://twitter.com/iPadFreaK901 iPadFreaK90

    so many flaws yet so many sales……….its ridiculous

    • http://twitter.com/Souldat1 Swaz

      Heat is not a flaw though, that is physics and should be no surprise to anyone.

      • http://www.facebook.com/people/Thomas-N-Shanna-Bernauer/100002948594321 Thomas N Shanna Bernauer

        And one of the reasons why the iPad will not come close to console like games, it’s physics. There is a reason why the consoles soak up a lot of electricity.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Augusto-De-Angelis/1602394106 Augusto De Angelis

    Apple just answered: Just buy an Ipad 2 also as backup

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_2JFDZXSTUH2HWGIM6NSZX66KWA Kurt

      they’re just holding it wrong

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Thomas-N-Shanna-Bernauer/100002948594321 Thomas N Shanna Bernauer

    Where is the source for this story?

  • Anonymous

    I use to have a huge issue with my iPhone 4 and Wifi. Everything else in my house connected fine (and I’m talking about over a dozen devices) so I thought it had to be the iPhone but it ended up being the router. Once I upgraded to newer one I’ve had no problems. So it could be the new iPad or the networks they’re trying to connect to. Hopefully Apple can reproduce the issue and find a resolution.

  • Anonymous

    Those iPads are hand made and they not all made by the same hand hence why they are run different
    I guess am lucky that my iPad 3 never gets warm or hot, my wifi signal is better than any other device I used.
    And with my unlimited data plan on my iPad (3G only, we don’t have LTE in the UK) Am a very happy customer of apple

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1507068701 Jorit Studer

    This must be software based as my iPad2 has some major problems connecting to fritzbox. I didn’t find a solution yet : ( but the problems are connecting, then for a few minutes fine then randomly disconnecting ! this is bullshit as i’m having a 3GS, a iPad 1 and a iPhone 4S which are just running fine on my network also not having problems with two glaxys which my parents own !

    Only thing I got from searching the web is that the problem occured since ios 5.0.1… this is some havy bullshit sorry for my language, but this is gotten insane watching a movie for 1min disconnecting and so on…

    Would be really grateful if anybody with a similar problem gave me a hint how to solve it ! thanx in advance : )

  • http://twitter.com/nubiebr David Neubauer

    It gets hot and loses it’s WI-FI I don’t like anything hot on my lap unless it’s my fiancée. I’ll skip the upgrade

  • Anonymous

    Wtf?? iPhone has an FM chip? So why is there no radio app? Guessing to protect iTunes revenue :(

  • http://twitter.com/AlanRoberts1971 Alan Roberts

    No issues with my iPad 3. Wifi signal is the same as on my iPhone 4. Only issue I have is with iTunes which sometimes tells me it’s unable to connect.

  • http://www.facebook.com/aziemke Andrew Ziemke

    I’m curious to know whether anyone having this problem tried resetting their “Network Settings” as this has always fixed my wifi connection problems in the past.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Anastassios-Tagalakis/100001064470108 Anastassios Tagalakis

    I just bought Ipad 3.
    It cannot connect to Fritzbox router or to Fritz repeater. It gets wrong ip number.

  • pouya shiri

    it sux indeed :(((
    download speed with laptop 40kbps
    download speed with iPad 1 31kbps
    and with my new iPad 12kbps :(((((((