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Apple iPhone and iPad iOS 6 network problems linger on

Apple's iOS 6.1 update fixed some users Wi-Fi problems but others still face Wi-Fi troubles and now 3G and Exchange problems are being reported.
Written by Steven Vaughan-Nichols, Senior Contributing Editor

It's been more than four months since Apple introduced iOS 6, but for many iPhone and iPad users Wi-Fi problems are still lingering on and new network problems have appeared with the 6.1 upgrade. 

Due to Wi-Fi, 3G, and Exchange problems you may not want to "upgrade" your iPhone or iPad to iOS 6.1.

After iOS 6 first arrived, an immediate Wi-Fi problem appeared and was quickly fixed. We'd hoped that would be the end of iDevices not being able to connect with Wi-Fi access points (AP)s. Our hopes were in vain.

Since then, there have been several other iOS 6 updates -- iOS 6.01 and 6.02 -- but the problems persisted. Now, with the release of iOS 6.1, once more we hoped for a fix for Wi-Fi problems. And, for some people, their hopes came true; but, for others, Wi-Fi and other network problems are persisting.

On the positive side of the ledger, a reader who's been having Wi-Fi problems since iOS 6 arrived was pleased to report that she had "just updated my iPhone 4S to iOS 6.1 and this problem is now resolved. In other words, I can now log-on to the work Wi-Fi network to which the iPhone was previously not connecting." That said, the four months it took to fix this problem left her angry at Apple. "This whole experience turned me SO off of Apple as a company, that I will NEVER purchase another Apple product again."

Another reader, however, reported, "Wi-Fi is completely screwed up after the iOS 6.1 update on my iPhone 4s." He's not the only one. The Apple forums are filled with such comments as: "Upgrading from 6.0.2 to 6.1. cut out my iPhone 4S from my office Wi-Fi. At home everything works still. At office - no way. Tried all the recommended steps - upgrading my Access Point firmware, setting Channel to Automatic, changing the SSID. No help,"

Some of these Wi-Fi problems may be the result of broken interactions between the AP and the phone or tablet. In particular, Apple has recently suggested that Apple products may be unable to connect to 802.11n Wi-Fi networks if WMM (Wireless Multimedia) is disabled.

It's not just Wi-Fi that's having trouble with the latest version of iOS. Vodafone, the UK cellular carrier, is asking that its iPhone 4S users not upgrade to iOS 6.1 because of intermittent 3G performance and connectivity problems. At least one other phone company, Three Austria, is reported to be seeing the same problem and it's also asking its 4S customers not to upgrade to iOS 6.1.

In addition to these network connectivity problems, Microsoft Exchange users are being urged not to upgrade because their iOS 6.1-equipped iPhones and iPads are overloading corporate Exchange servers. This problem may, in turn, contribute to numerous reports of lousy iOS 6.1 battery life.

The bottom line is that the newest iOS is still having major network problems. While 6.1 may have fixed the Wi-Fi problem for some, for others, Wi-Fi woes are continuing and with it come new annoyances for some 3G and Exchange users.

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