How-come my Macbook Pro picks up WIFI signals my iPhone4 doesn't??

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Bobby Corwen, Feb 8, 2011.

  1. Bobby Corwen macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    #1
    So I'm sitting here in my bed and I am picking up like fifteen WIFI signals (some still unlocked in 2011 lol) from around my neighborhood...

    But my iPhone only sees four from the same exact location.

    C'mon Jobs...
     
  2. Steve Jobs. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2010
    #2
    I would think a laptop would have a stronger wifi antenna....

    but i don't know for sure.
     
  3. Krevnik macrumors 68040

    Krevnik

    Joined:
    Sep 8, 2003
    #3
    There are a couple things you can do to improve antenna performance, and one of them is a bigger antenna (of the right length for the frequency). A phone just doesn't have the room for a large antenna.

    There's also the fact that the iPhone doesn't support anything in the 5Ghz band (802.11a, and 5Ghz 802.11n). Networks in that band won't show up at all, while your laptop will see them fine.
     
  4. DirtySocks85 macrumors 65816

    DirtySocks85

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2009
    Location:
    Wichita, KS
    #4
    I'm also going to guess that it's because you can put a more powerful WiFi antenna in a notebook than a smartphone. Let's think about both space and power for a moment, and that the iPhone has to cram radios for cell service and Bluetooth in that same tiny little space, whereas your MBP has quite a bit of room for it.
     
  5. Bobby Corwen thread starter macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    #5
    So I guess its the physical physics and length limitation of the antenna..
     
  6. JRoDDz macrumors 68000

    JRoDDz

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2009
    Location:
    NJ
    #6
    a number of things are possible:

    1. Mac antenna is better for wifi
    2. Mac has 5ghz 802.11n band
    3. iPhone wifi antenna inferior to Mac
    4. iPhone is only 2.4ghz N band
     
  7. Alexjones macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    May 28, 2010
    #7
    My macbook pro is a marvel of modern science. Im loving every minute of it.
     
  8. DirtySocks85 macrumors 65816

    DirtySocks85

    Joined:
    Mar 12, 2009
    Location:
    Wichita, KS
    #8
    Aren't 1 and 3 just repeating the same thing in a different way?
     
  9. Bobby Corwen thread starter macrumors 68030

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2010
    #9
    And arent they the cause AND the effect? lol...

    Like pretty much restating the topic question as a reason for the question lol.
     
  10. kevintech macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2010
    #10
    I love how you criticize a phone for not having a laptops modem strength, then call out steve jobs. How's community college going for you?
     
  11. yawnyj macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2008
    Location:
    Gig Harbor , Wa
    #11
    To kevintech: okay maybe he didn't ask a question that a lot of people know the answer to, but there is no reason to be insulting!
     
  12. Swaggar macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    New York
    #12
    Well I guess the laptop has a powerful wifi antena than your Iphone.Thts why you are catching more signals on your laptop..
     
  13. Sedrick macrumors 68030

    Sedrick

    Joined:
    Nov 10, 2010
    #13
    Now, now, no need for that. No need to call out Jobs either, it's just a phone and can't pick up what a laptop could, but the OP shouldn't be insulted for it.

    I think the iPhone has a pretty strong antenna, though. I've driven down my street and caught every wifi network on the road as I drove down it...
     
  14. asleep macrumors 68040

    asleep

    Joined:
    Sep 26, 2007
    #14
    Ouch.
     
  15. dtbratt macrumors 6502

    dtbratt

    Joined:
    Feb 6, 2011
    Location:
    Grimsby, ON
    #15
    Ouch is right lol

    Plain and simple. Laptops will have a stronger antenna then a phone. But the iPhone 4's wifi antenna is pretty strong, much stronger then my wifes 3GS as well.
     
  16. samh macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 29, 2009
    #16
    Antennas aren't "stronger" or "weaker" than one another. But the design of one over the other can make it more receptive, especially for certain frequencies. There are other factors, too. Antenna location, for example, and proximity to other RF-emitting electronics.
     
  17. decafjava macrumors 68000

    decafjava

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2011
    Location:
    Geneva
    #17
    Another way to put that might be "more sensitive" rather than stronger?
     
  18. iceterminal macrumors 68000

    iceterminal

    Joined:
    May 25, 2008
    Location:
    Dallas Tx.
    #18
    To put a humorous slant to this, I translated the OP to a more worldly perspective.

    Why does this:
    [​IMG]

    not go as fast as this:

    [​IMG]

    Yes, I know its a stretch. But still, the iPhone and the MBP have two completely different wifi antenna. Of course they won't be the same.

    And then to say "C'mon Jobs"? Thats pretty funny in itself.
     
  19. rwilliams macrumors 68040

    rwilliams

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2009
    Location:
    Durham, NC
    #19
    I think the other posters have answered this one sufficiently. Though I find that WiFi in all Apple devices is sketchy at best. My laptop, iPhone, and iPod will lose signals with hotspots that Windows machines in the same locations will not.
     
  20. trsnrtr, Feb 9, 2011
    Last edited: Feb 9, 2011

    trsnrtr macrumors 6502

    trsnrtr

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2009
    Location:
    Central Illinois, USA
    #20
    My new ViPhone is doing the opposite. I'm getting incredible wifi results with it. I just tested it in a hot spot coffee shop and got a download speed of 17.85 Mbps and an upload of 5.18 Mbps. My iPad, my net book and my aging Sony Vaio can't get that.

    In fact, I just checked my iPad a minute later, same spot, and got 7.14 Mbs/1.17 Mbps
     
  21. JRoDDz macrumors 68000

    JRoDDz

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2009
    Location:
    NJ
    #21
    You are correct :D
     

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