MacBook Air wi-fi bug knocked down by Apple antidote
APPLE is well known for products that work. Switch them on they connect. Plug them in, they play.
So when you get one where something doesn't work, it's surprising, especially when you are reviewing it.
But judging by the number of visits to Apple support page, I was not alone.
Some of the super light-weight, go all day MacBook Air's had a serious a wi-fi bug.
At the time of writing, there were more than 80,000 views on the support page where users were discussing the problem and possible fixes.
Users were universally reporting that their wi-fi connects for a bit and then drops out. Mine did it all the time.
I reported my problem to Apple and they sent me a replacement machine. The same thing happened, even though it was apparently working fine at Apple's office.
I could connect the MacBook Air via the personal hotspot on my iPhone and found it did not drop out hardly at all. But that is a pain and no long term remedy.
It's a pity because the MacBook Air is a great machine - one which will no doubt be used by many business people, students - and journalists wanting an everyday notebook that can last all day.
The super selling point is battery life. The 13 inch boasts up to 12 hours of battery life or 11 hours of movie playback, while the 11 inch has nine hours.
Coupled with the redesigned Airport Extreme and Airport Time Capsules - you have a set-up which offers super fast data transfer and storage.
New Intel HD graphics promises up to 40% faster performance for gaming and graphics, while the new flash storage is claimed to be 45% faster.
According to reviews conducted by The Australian, the 2013 Air reads data from its drive at almost 800 megabytes per second. Last year's clocked around 480MBps.
The Oz's review also found the laptop lasted 12 hours and 15 minutes - on a 75% screen resolution.
What I loved particularly was the super light aluminium enclosure.
It's tough enough that you could slide it in with your other gear without feeling the need for a dedicated laptop bag or sleeve.
The new AirPort base stations include high-powered radios and a six-element beam-forming antenna array to maximise range and performance.
With setup built right into OS X and iOS, Apple says users can create a high-speed Wi-Fi network in just a few clicks.
That wasn't my experience given the problems with wi-fi on the Air.
Overall, the MacBook Air is certainly one to put on your shopping list, especially after Apple released a software update to fix the wi-fi glitch. Initial testing once the software update was loaded resulted in no continuing problems.
AT A GLANCE
Price: The 11-inch MacBook Air comes with a 1.3 GHz processor, 4GB of memory and 128GB of flash storage starting at RRP A$1,099.
The 13-inch MacBook Air comes with a 1.3 GHz processor, 4GB of memory, 128GB of flash storage starting at RRP A$1,249.
Pros: Great battery life, super light, great faster solid-state drives, cheaper than last year's model
Cons: Initial wi-fi bug, no DVD drive, no big design break-through