April 26th, 2004 • 11:35 pm
Apple’s latest software update for AirPort networking has been out for a week or so, but so far, in spite of my numerous on-going problems with AirPort connectivity, I have refrained from installing the update either on my desktop G4 or on my PowerBook G4.
Based on what I have been reading about the update so far, this has been a wise decision. First of all, there is no mention in the release notes of any improvements in my areas of concern (roaming networks and unpredictable AirPort reception on PowerBook).
It really is very frustrating that Apple seem to be utterly unable to get their act together when it comes to AirPort networking. After all, they are the ones who introduced the technology to the masses. And that was half a decade ago. You’d think that, by now, the technology would be sufficiently fine-tuned that only minor problems would occur. But no… We are still dealing with lost connections, poor signal reception, etc. In other words, the basics still don’t work right.
I don’t think I need to remind Apple that the key words in wireless networking are wireless and networking. If you can’t maintain a connection to a network or have a reliable wireless signal, the technology is pretty much useless. It’s like asking people to drive a car that stalls constantly and unpredictably. Or like providing calendar software that doesn’t notify you of your appointments reliably. Ahem.
PS: As I was writing this and retrieving the appropriate links on the web, I noticed that the AirPort Update 3.4 had been pulled and replaced with AirPort Update 3.4.1. In typical fashion, however, Apple does not say why 3.4 has been pulled, and what has been fixed or not fixed in 3.4.1. In fact, the Read Me note for AirPort Update 3.4.1 still starts with:
Read Before You Install AirPort 3.4
So obviously they haven’t even bothered to update the release notes… No, I’m afraid it’s not really getting any better… I don’t think I’ll be installing this update any time soon. And it makes me mad because for the past six months Apple have failed to fix the wireless networking problems that they introduced in Panther.