Can someone test WiFi reception: iPad 3G+WiFi vs iPad WiFi

Discussion in 'iPad' started by GeeYouEye, Apr 30, 2010.

  1. GeeYouEye macrumors 68000


    Dec 9, 2001
    State of Denial
    Can someone do a comparison of WiFi signal strengths between a Wifi-only and 3G-enabled iPad? Does the plastic 3G window help with the WiFi reception?

    Thanks in advance.
  2. HXGuy macrumors 68000

    Mar 25, 2010
    I will test it but not sure how. Is there an app that will show you the reception? I already did a wifi speed test and they were pretty much identical.
  3. Fonzmeister macrumors member

    Apr 25, 2010
    Portugal - Lisbon
  4. GeeYouEye thread starter macrumors 68000


    Dec 9, 2001
    State of Denial
    ^HXGuy: Great, got a link to the results?

    As for how to do it, just walk around with the WiFi iPad, preferably right on the edge of its wifi range (so the WiFi indicator shows only 1 bar). Then repeat that walk with the 3G, and see if at any point the you get 0 or 2 (or 3!) bars instead. I don't think there are any apps that do signal levels and SNR like there are on the Mac, but I could be wrong.
  5. Lotus Esprit V8 macrumors regular

    Apr 18, 2010
    New England
    Preferably we could have some one test a 3G that currently has or did have a WiFi only with the connectivity issues.
  6. AVonGauss macrumors regular

    Oct 6, 2006
    Boynton Beach, FL
    That's two separate issues, one where there are WiFi connectivity issues and I would expect the 3G model to have the same issues since there has been no new firmware update. The other issue, which I believe the OP is referencing is where the iPad WiFi signal is weak and the additional plastic in the 3G model may help.
  7. Jeremyao macrumors newbie

    Feb 6, 2009
    You can use the Airport Utility on a Mac to view the "Rate" of the connection, if you have an Apple wireless network. I'm on my third 64GB Wifi iPad and all of them have had weak signal strength and inconsistent wifi Rates while using wireless N 5Ghz on my Airport Extreme. The Rate will never go above 72 on my iPad while my MBP and other N devices easily get 300 but, I believe this is a hardware limitation of the low power wifi chip used in all iPad's. Someone with both iPad's Wifi and 3G please provide some comparison of Wifi Rates on wireless-N 5Ghz.
  8. magicandmystery macrumors member

    Jun 27, 2007
    Gizmodo did a test already. Don't have a link, though.
  9. Jeremyao macrumors newbie

    Feb 6, 2009
  10. iRabbit macrumors 6502

    Jul 10, 2007
    From what i've read, I'm starting to think it's the 64gig units that are a problem. Hubby has 32 gig wifi... He's had zero problems. Sitting next to him with the 3G 64 gig I have a weaker signal, and the signal isn't steady.

    Nothing scientific, but I was surprised to run into an issue since it's all been flawless with my husbands for the last two weeks.
  11. JZ Wire macrumors regular

    JZ Wire

    Dec 18, 2003
    Miami, FL
    Ive been testing my 3G iPad today after weeks of hearing reports of bad wifi strength. To be honest, I find that the signal is on par with my iphone.
    The signal was strong throughout the house. I then went a few feet outside and both the ipad and iphone had a weak signal. Btw, i have a 32GB ipad.
  12. cheekyjeremy macrumors 6502

    Aug 20, 2009
    Here in Houston, TX, the iPad 3g is only slightly slower than wifi. I tested the 4 options I have available to me, and they are (from left to right) as follow:

    iPad 3g - 2.37mbps download
    iPad tethered through miwi - 1.97mbps download
    iPad tethered verizon mifi - 1.72mbps download
    iPad through wifi - 2.5mbps download
  13. imacdaddy macrumors 6502a

    Feb 2, 2006
    Both my wife and I have the 64GB iPad and both have weak wifi signal vs our iPhones in the next room. iPhones got full signal vs iPad only 1 bar. I've got the AEBS 802.11N 5GHz configured so ALL devices are on 5GHz band not the 2GHz.

    I too want to know if the plastic top of the iPad 3G+wifi makes a difference on reception.
  14. Payton3485 macrumors member

    May 1, 2010
    I received my 3G/wifi iPad and I have had zero problems with wifi reception. I have full bars showing for wifi throughout my house and the signal mirrors my iPhone/iPod touch. I am very happy that I am not experiencing any of the issues that some here have spoken about. I have not lost connection and was not asked to re-enter my network's password again either. It's been a very pleasant experience thus far.
  15. orangerock macrumors regular

    Nov 6, 2009
    My wife has had wi-fi drop 4 times since receiving her ipad 3G yesterday. I don't know that one day is long enough time to say it has an issue, but was wondering if more people are seeing this. Should the ipad ever lose a solid reliable wi-fi signal? My Fall '09 iMac was purchased last December and I have never had a random signal drop.
  16. Bigrahizzle macrumors regular


    Apr 18, 2010
    Signals drop from time to time, Mine droped earlier but I'm assuming it was the lousy router here
  17. jroug macrumors member

    Aug 26, 2008
    Has anyone done this yet? I'd have thought the tech sites wouldve been all over this - seems like a no-brainer. I have a wifi ipad sitting in the box in hopes of finding out if the 3g version has the same wifi issues the plain ol wifi version has. As the original poster mentioned, the plastic element of the case might improve reception.

  18. tbullock macrumors newbie

    Jul 5, 2008
    Same issues with 3G

    I got a 3G on Friday and definitely noticed that the WiFi is weak. It's weaker than my iPhone, and weak enough that I searched for others having issues. I use an Apple Airport Extreme with the 5GHz band, and it occasionally drops the connection when I'm about 40 feet away. When it doesn't drop, it seems to go from strong to weak to strong again repeatedly. I have my AE set to the lowest signal strength though, so I'm hoping that turning it up will help. Both iPad versions have the WiFi antenna right behind the Apple logo on the back (I think), so there should be no difference in WiFi reception between them.
  19. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Dec 25, 2003
    Northern Virginia
    SpeedtestX HD

    Here are the results off my iPad 3G

    The first pic is showing lower speeds in the recent tests section of the screen capture using a neighbors "borrowed" wifi signal - while the main screen is showing my speed test result on my wifi. Sure would be nice to have the name of the network next to the wifi symbol. It was only when I went to turn off wifi and start the 3G that I noticed I was not on the right network. The second is using 3G.

    Attached Files:

  20. tripjammer macrumors 6502a

    Apr 28, 2010
    I got a Ipad 64gb Wifi+3G model. The wifi is rock solid in my crib! I got a brand new Airport Extreme.
  21. Chip NoVaMac macrumors G3

    Chip NoVaMac

    Dec 25, 2003
    Northern Virginia
    Same here with my slightly older Airport Extreme. And have had no issues in signing on to other wifi networks I have come across as of yet...
  22. tigres macrumors 68040


    Aug 31, 2007
    Land of the Free-Waiting for Term Limits
    Took the iPad 16g wifi model to Philly this week on a conference. Wifi on it sucked- period. Could not locate the free wifi in the room that my MBA and iPhone picked up. Logged in with my T-mobile hotspot account (which it found) and noticed it dropping connections every 10 min or so- forcing me to log in again.

    After trying everything, just used the MBA and iPhone.

    Left it in the bag for the rest of the trip. this unit is useless if it can't get a signal. BTW, this is a replacement unit, the first had hardware freezing on video streaming (hard reset only fixed it).

    I'm perplexed why so many have great experiences they share and our 2nd unit appears abysmal at best. The excitement of using this on traveling was a huge letdown to me.

    I'm taking it back.
  23. jeffp macrumors member

    Aug 5, 2008
    I have a 64g wifi iPad that has been performing well on my wifi network. It seems every bit as good as my iPhone 3GS.
  24. cjbryce macrumors 6502


    Jun 4, 2008
    This was on a reasonably strong Vodafone UK 3G connection (despite what it might say - WiFi was switched off)

    Download speed: 3562.36 Kbps (3.48 Mbps / 445.30 KB/s) Total test time: 22.996 Seconds


Share This Page