Please create an account to participate in the Slashdot moderation system

 



Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Bug Businesses Wireless Networking Apple Hardware

MacBooks Experiencing Bluetooth Problems 120

Posted by kdawson
from the don't-sleep-too-good-either dept.
flowolf writes in with news that Apple seems to be having difficulty getting to grips with a Bluetooth problem on MacBooks. Bluetooth goes unavailable intermittently from what users are assuming is a hardware problem, and while it's out the machines won't stay in sleep mode. Complaints started last spring on the Apple forum, which is still quite active. Many people have had to send their MacBooks for repair more than once without a satisfactory resolution.
This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

MacBooks Experiencing Bluetooth Problems

Comments Filter:
  • by Speare (84249) on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @07:14AM (#20821469) Homepage Journal

    I recently moved, and found some troubling differences in Bluetooth performance. At the old place, my bluetooth keyboard and mouse worked quite solidly: smooth responsive mouse motion and I could type full speed without problems. The range was quite good with no deterioration at 5ft. At the new place, the mouse often jitters or sloshes as I move it, and if I type quickly, once in a while it will receive the keystrokes in a different order. (At first I felt it was just an occasional transpose mistake on my part, but every once in a while, a whole word will be received *mostly* backwards.) There's a noticeable improvement/degradation effect if I simply move a Coke can around on my desk, even if I keep the mouse within about 2ft of the Mac. The mouse is so bad I switched to an older radio-based wireless mouse instead.

    I'm guessing from other cases mentioned on the web that Bluetooth gets stuck trying to resend packets if there's interference killing some packets. I imagine this sort of jitter and resend loop can be a big problem if it happens in a sleep mode.

    • I'd be curious as to the age difference between the two places. Newer construction tends to use the metal studs internally for drywall, I'd like to know if that makes a difference. Did you move from a townhouse to a house. An apartment maybe?

      Anyway, I'm sure that the difference in construction have a lot to do with it.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Speare (84249)
        I would have thought that adding metal would make the signal worse. If anything, it's the opposite. I moved from a 12-year old apartment building with steel central vents, and a glass-and-steel desk, to a 120-year old house with wood floors, slat-and-lath walls, and a mostly wood desk. If anything, the old place must have been *absorbing* signal.
        • crappy wiring in the old place may have something to do with it. crappy cabling = leaky RF = interference.
      • I don't know, my apartment is about 100 years old and has something that looks like chickenwire in the wall(some metal mesh). It seems that it was used to keep all the straws in places that holds the cement. Anyway it does a good job of blocking wifi.
        It is layered like this:
        [cement] [straws] [metal wire] [wood planks in a # pattern] [metal wire] [straws] [cement]

        These are walls that does not carry any weight, those that does, are at the very least 11 inches of bricks, the outer walls are almost double that.
    • by PlatyPaul (690601)
      Strange... I've never had any problems with my 4-years ancient Bluetooth keyboard and mouse despite placing it in locations where other signals (most notably WiFi) were noticeably dampened.
    • by alphafoo (319930)
      I have the same issue with letters getting transposed if I am typing quickly on my Apple BT keyboard. Sometimes just a letter or two, but sometimes a whole word is reversed. I am not clever enough to do that on my own so I'm guessing it's a BT issue.

      But I am on my third Mac notebook in just 18 months (PowerBook then MBPro then MBPro again) after the first two had to be replaced following months of hardware failures, and I'd like a little time off from interacting with Apple's support folks on a weekly basis
    • by code4fun (739014)
      I have a PPC based Mac mini with an Apple bluetooth keyboard. This thing works flawlessly! I also have a USB based Microsoft wireless laser mouse 6000 which works great. The only time I ever get a "Lost connection" is when I need to replace batteries for my wireless keyboard and/or mouse.

      Having said that, I have a Mac Book Pro which I bought a nice Microsoft Presenter Mouse 8000. I am, however, seeing intermittent problems with it, but I'm not sure it is a hardware problem. Also, I don't really know how Blu
      • by owndao (1025990)

        I have an iMac G5 with Apple's Blutooth keyboard and Bluetooth mouse (not the multi-button mighty mouse). I have used all three in 4 locations and have never had any problems with either device. I bought a Logitech Cordless click that uses a USB dongle and also has an extension cordmount for the dongle. The Logitech has experienced connection and behaviour problems many times. The dongle has a very limited range 5-6 feet as compared to the Bluetooth's 20 feet. Sometimes the Logitech mouse will lose the abil

  • by suv4x4 (956391) on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @07:14AM (#20821471)
    Complaints started last spring on the Apple forum, which is still quite active.

    Oh don't worry, we're working on erasing those complaints.

    - Apple's Support Team
  • Silence from Apple (Score:5, Interesting)

    by klagermkii (791101) on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @07:24AM (#20821515)

    The real problem is the total lack of communication from anyone on Apple's side to these kinds of problems. Bluetooth problems have been an ongoing issue since I started using Tiger (10.4.4), with everything from the aforementioned "Bluetooth unavailable", to problems with using DUN via Bluetooth (dial up too often via DUN and it just mysteriously dies), to issues where Bluetooth PAN simply disables itself. Now after a good 2 years this kind of stuff gets really tiring but no one at Apple says a word which adds an extra layer of frustration to the whole process. Are they even aware of the problems from their aluminium tower?

    Now compare that with Microsoft who also had Bluetooth problems [msdn.com] with their phones, and you can actually get some kind of interactivity with the developers. Your end users might end up being a bit nasty to you on the forum, but it's far less than the ill-feelings your brand generates if you just clam up.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      The real problem is the total lack of communication from anyone on Apple's side to these kinds of problems.

      This seems to be Apple's MO in recent years at least. Because all of their grass-root marketing efforts revolve around "it just works," they seem reluctant to acknowledge when problems do exist.

      Look, Apple, there's nothing shameful about having problems in your product. It happens all the time. The computing industry is relatively young, and the technology that's involved is usually not very mature compared to products in other industries. It's far better to admit there's a problem than to go on pretendi

    • by topham (32406)
      Meanwhile, some of us have been using Bluetooth on OS X since 10.3 and never experienced significant issues.
      3 different machines. G5, MacBook Pro (CD), and iMac Core Duo.

      • Meanwhile, some of us have been using Bluetooth on OS X since 10.3 and never experienced significant issues. 3 different machines. G5, MacBook Pro (CD), and iMac Core Duo.

        I don't doubt that. I'm sure that 95% of Mac users that use Bluetooth never experience any problems with it at all. Maybe the other 5% just suffer from some strange combination of being unlucky, or aren't using Apple designed Bluetooth devices [macrumors.com] (I was unable to use that mouse properly for a good month before I found that hint), put more traffic over Bluetooth than the average person, or put their MacBooks to sleep instead of shutting them down (the forum linked in the story has that as quite a common them

        • by dgatwood (11270)

          It's possible that Apple doesn't even know about your particular problem, depending on how obscure the Bluetooth device is.

          If you're having reproducible problems with a particular device, take a packet log while this is happening using /Developer/Applications/Utilities/Bluetooth/PacketLogger. Then, read the bug reporting guidelines at http://developer.apple.com/bugreporter/ [apple.com]. Finally, file a bug report at http://bugreporter.apple.com/ [apple.com].

      • by thegnu (557446)
        That sounds like the problem with the electrical jack on the G4 iBooks. Not everybody had it.
        Cheers.
    • I wonder it's a problem with Bluetooth itself. First Microsoft was having problems with bluetooth devices, then Sony with their PS3 controllers, and now Apple? That can't just be a coincidence.

  • Bluetooth, meh (Score:5, Interesting)

    by kevmatic (1133523) on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @07:36AM (#20821561)
    I haven't been terribly impressed with bluetooth. I bought a (rather expensive) bluetooth mouse for my Acer laptop, and I keep experiencing random disconnects in Windows with it. Not in Kubuntu, though. The mouse works perfectly in Linux.

    And evidently the XP Bluetooth stack is some third party thing you can uninstall and reinstall, because I had to reinstall it to even get it to do anything.

    And it seems that most phones have very few bluetooth features beyond headsets. Like you can't upload and download photos without some crappy phone tools software if you have a Motorola.

    Has anyone found bluetooth to be reliable for them? Any success stories?
    • Re:Bluetooth, meh (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @07:49AM (#20821645)
      When it comes to Bluetooth on phones, your issue is with the provider. Try GSM phones instead of Verizon.

      With my Motorola RAZR from Cingular/AT&T, I can download/upload images and songs/ringtones via the Browse device on my PowerBook. I can also sync my calendar and address book with ease. I can pair my Headset and my Acura TL Handsfree with ease. And last, but not least, I experience the good old days of slow Internet browsing when I use it as a modem. (It's slow because it's GPRS.)

      So, yeah. Cell phone provider's suck. The only ones that let you do anything good with your phone are those that don't require your phone to physically designed to only work with that provider. I just wish there was a better option than AT&T in my area. (T-Mobile doesn't work 5 feet into my house.)
      • I just wish there was a better option than AT&T in my area. (T-Mobile doesn't work 5 feet into my house.)

        That's highly unlikely, given the tower-sharing and roaming agreements beween TMobile and AT&T/Cingular.

        You're seeing a difference in handset capabilities, not providers.

      • by trix7117 (835907)
        While it's true that the providers are (most) responsible for the limited Bluetooth functionality on phones, most of the things you mention being able to do are possible with a year-old KRZR on Verizon (although I can't believe I'm defending them). Out of the box I was able to transfer pictures and songs (not ringtones) to/from my Mac Mini using Bluetooth. With a few tweaks to iSync, the KRZR was able to sync my calendar and address book as well. Of course, it also synced with the TL Handsfree, but that
    • Has anyone found bluetooth to be reliable for them? Any success stories?

      Not sure, but I have a strange situation with a Plantronics 910 bluetooth earbug that I use with its associated USB dongle for Skype. (Incidentally, it's apparently also capable of being used with mobile phones, but I haven't tried this.)

      Anyway, I have a lot of drop-outs and white noise when used with my computer and USB2.0, but on my old computer at work, which only has USB1.1, reception and transmission are crystal clear. Go figure
    • by langelgjm (860756)

      And it seems that most phones have very few bluetooth features beyond headsets. Like you can't upload and download photos without some crappy phone tools software if you have a Motorola.

      This is a result of vendor lock-in. It seems a lot of cellular companies want to be able to charge you $3 for a ringtone, so they disable Bluetooth file-transfer in case you thought you might do it yourself.

      I just bought a new unlocked phone, and besides headset, I can use all the file transfer features, in addition to usi

    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by ArcticFlood (863255)
      I use Bluetooth on a daily basis, though it is mostly with a Nokia 6126 and a Motorola headset. I also have a cheap Bluetooth USB adapter, and I use that fairly frequently. On Kubuntu, I can push files and games to my phone, pull pictures from my phone, and even control Amarok from my phone to a degree [sebruiz.net]. I had similar luck with transferring files under my previous Gentoo installation. I can also connect my headset to my computer for Skype after running a command with the address of the headset.

      My friend's ne
    • Has anyone found bluetooth to be reliable for them? Any success stories?
      Yup. My Wiimotes have pretty reliable reception.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by el_gordo101 (643167)
      Verizon for sure disables many of the bluetooth (and other) features of their phones. If you are feeling brave, you can go to howardforums.com [howardforums.com], look up your make/model of phone and see if they have instructions as to how to enable these features. You do run the risk of bricking your phone, you most certainly will void your warranty, and Verizon will not even look at the phone if you bring it into the shop, but you can hack the phones to turn on all the features that they disable.
    • >>I haven't been terribly impressed with bluetooth.

      I have mixed results. I use Logitech MX5000 keyboard and mouse with Ubuntu. Had to do some tweaking with Edgy Eft to get them to work (running it via USB bluetooth dongle), but since then, no problem whatsoever - even after upgrading to Gutsy Gibbon.

      But when I use the same mouse with T60 running XP, I see the connection breaking once in a while. And this is very surprising - given the fact that T60 hardware as well as XP both are supposed to wor
    • And evidently the XP Bluetooth stack is some third party thing you can uninstall and reinstall, because I had to reinstall it to even get it to do anything.


      Your problem sounds more like an issue with the phone.

      However, there is a Microsoft Bluetooth Stack available for XP, and Vista ships with a native stack.

    • by gemada (974357)
      i have no problems sending mp3s from my blackberry 8830 to a macbook using bluetooth although the transfer speeds are very slow even with the BB only a few inches from the laptop.
    • by glebfrank (58922)

      Has anyone found bluetooth to be reliable for them? Any success stories?


      Yep. Been using it for connecting to internet from my laptop, via the phone. Works fine. Started it a few years back; I'm on my second laptop since then (had a Sony Vaio, then iBook), 3rd phone (Nokia 3650, then Motorola V330, then Motorola RAZR.) T-Mobile.
    • by sakasune (772886)

      And it seems that most phones have very few bluetooth features beyond headsets. Like you can't upload and download photos without some crappy phone tools software if you have a Motorola.

      Has anyone found bluetooth to be reliable for them? Any success stories?
      Have you tried BitPim? It's worked on 3 of my verizon phones (1 using USB, the other 2 Bluetooth), but none were Motorolas.
  • Yes (Score:4, Interesting)

    by El Lobo (994537) on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @07:44AM (#20821597)
    My girlfriend (yes, I have one) have a macbook pro and has been experimenting this problem since the day she bough the thing. Sometimes it works well, but some days blue toth connections just intermitently sut downs and there is no way to get it right. The thing is that there is no way to consistently reproduce the problem.

    The funny thing is that Apple support here in Stockholm said to here that "there is nothing wrong with it".... Oh well...

    • Re: (Score:1, Funny)

      by MikeTheMan (944825)
      I think your post fell into a spelling tornado on the way here.
    • by Pope (17780)
      Not related to the MBP, but I was having problems with my Mini disconnecting my Bluetooth mouse & keyboard after bootup, sometimes after a minute, sometimes longer. Restarts, re-installs, nothing seemed to work. On a whim I installed Temperature Monitor, and found out that the fan controller had stopped working, and the machine was running super hot! Once the temp got beyond a certain point, BT stopped working. Using a fan control program to keep the temps below 60C seems to have fixed it.
      • You may have found the problem for lots of BT issues! I use a V270 on my work ThinkPad T60p and it occasionally disconnets. Power cycling the mouse is sufficient to re-establish the connection. It tends to happen only after the laptop has been on for quite a while (such as an extended period at home on the dock).
    • The thing is that there is no way to consistently reproduce the problem.

      You've just hit the nail on the head. THIS is the real problem. As someone that does tech support work, and has had to deal with many inconsistent problems like this, the fact that it isn't reproducible makes it near impossible to fix it without a total replacement of the systems involved with it.

      I had some issues with a PC I built, where it would randomly reboot itself. Electrical fault you'd say, and you'd be right I'd imagine. Ex

    • Re: (Score:1, Offtopic)

      by Nimey (114278)

      My girlfriend (yes, I have one)
      I call BS until you post JPEGs. :-)
    • Re: (Score:1, Offtopic)

      by suv4x4 (956391)
      My girlfriend (yes, I have one)

      Where's your temple, oh mighty one, so I could fall on my knees and praise you!
    • by illumin8 (148082)

      Sometimes it works well, but some days blue toth connections just intermitently sut downs and there is no way to get it right. The thing is that there is no way to consistently reproduce the problem.

      Sounds like you have 2.4 ghz. interference in your area, probably caused by too many wireless APs/cordless phones/microwave ovens/etc.

      I'm not sure who's braindead idea it was to invent the Bluetooth protocol using 2.4 ghz, then proceed to embed it into notebook computers that use 2.4ghz for their WiFi cards as w

    • by juniorbird (74686)
      I can consistently reproduce the problem -- switch to Windows XP. I've never been able to keep Bluetooth consistently working on my Dell.
      • by GNious (953874)
        Does your Dell use Toshiba bluetooth hardware? Many do (e.g. D620), and it is utter crap. Honestly, I've been through several BT stacks and HW implementations, and nothing comes close to the utter ********** that is Toshiba Bluetooth. Actually impressive that they can get it THAT wrong. Even the older Linux releases would come out ahead of the latest stack from Toshiba (at least in some areas).

        Bluetooth? Stay away from Toshiba and Apple (since Apple seems to think it is only for mice, keyboards and phone-he
  • Old problems... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by sakusha (441986) on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @07:46AM (#20821613)
    I've noticed a few oddities with Apple's BlueTooth keyboards and mice, but nothing that makes them totally unusable. I have a Quad G5 and a BlueTooth Keyboard and Mighty Mouse. Every two weeks or so, I get a "Lost Connection" message about my mouse, it goes totally dead, so I have to plug in a USB mouse, go to BT Settings, and manually re-pair the mouse before it will work again. Now just the other day, I got the same error with my Apple BlueTooth Keyboard, had to re-pair that too. But after the re-pair, everything works fine. I'm baffled, there is no obvious cause for the loss of contact, and even if it was something basic like RF interference, the devices should work again if I just power them down and back up again. But that's not sufficient, I have to delete previous BT settings and re-pair. That sounds like a software problem in the OS or drivers. Oh well, it doesn't happen often enough to be more than a minor annoyance.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    I got a sweet offer on an Apple store refurb GMA950-based iMac (the late 2006 educational one). That means having to use external Bluetooth. Sometimes, it simply doesn't see the dongle (I've tried 2, my current choice being one of Belkin's that came with a BT keyboard) on reboot (and very occasionally on waking), so I have to remove and re-insert. On my old Powerbook, which used PCMCIA Bluetooth, sleeping kills Bluetooth more often. They're both running 10.4.10, so I concluded that something was just crappy
  • I've found Apple to be a real PITA to deal with for hardware with intermittent faults. I recently had a bad experience with that with a MacBook with a faulty MagSafe connector that still hasn't been replaced because Apple's tech support doesn't believe me, since he claimed it was "not a known problem"!

    Apple's support is medicore consumer-level stuff at best. It's little wonder that few businesses purchase Macs.

    • by captainjaroslav (893479) on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @08:02AM (#20821735)
      Consumer Reports' surveys consistently give Apple's support the highest rating of any computer company. Enterprise-level support might be a different story, but calling their consumer-level support "mediocre at best" is not an opinion that is supported statistically. What it may mean, of course, is that the entire industry's support is so awful that Apple only looks good in comparison. I'm just sayin'.
      • There are three companies that I have to deal with for issues related to hardware problems, ironically both for home and work (large biotech): Dell, HP, and Apple.

        If I'm calling related to an issue with a system at work: HP is the least responsive (they are our companie's "preferred" vendor) and Dell and Apple are both excellent (for Dell, we purchase the highest level of support and, for Apple, we just have standard AppleCare).

        If I'm calling related to an issue with a system at home: HP is more or less wor
      • It's not just Consumer Reports either. Nearly ALL reviews of computer service rank Apple #1, and usually by a huge margin.
    • I have to post my own anecdata refuting yours. A few months after I bought my eMac, strange things started happening. The guy on the phone was great, he didn't talk down to me, once I told him all the things I'd tried (resetting the PRAM, etc) he didn't try to explain to me how to reboot the computer or anything (unlike my other main tech support experiences, with cable companies). He told me where I could get to the RAM and how to test each stick, and said that if either was bad to take it to the Apple sto
  • FUD (Score:2, Funny)

    by darinp (1076055)
    Steve would have told us if there were any issues. That's why we love Apple. Fellatio in exchange for things that just work. Everybody knows where they kneel.
  • I use a BT headset for Skype and Vent. I have tried it on both my iMac and my Laptop, the laptop is a Toshiba Sattelite. Simply put, I never use BT on my iMac any more unless I want to be "tethered" to the machine as if with a cord.

    Using the mac it got static from as little as 5 feet from the machine and it would go "choppy" on occasion even while sitting at the machine. My laptop meanwhile will let me get nearly across the house to the back patio before it goes to static. My laptop has also not lost com
    • by bhima (46039)
      I've got a quad G5 PowerMac and can say the same thing except I get the choppy sound with the headset pressed up against the bluetooth antenna on the back of the machine (under my desk). It did not always act like this... previously it would quickly crash the whole system and require a reboot. I use skype *a lot* and I've had so much trouble with using the Mac port I wound up putting skype on an old laptop running windows xp.

      I was hoping when I moved to a MacPro this would not be an issue. :(
    • I am far from an Apple apologist, but I have seen several laptop brands that have poor range when using internal bluetooth.

      5 feet is extra short though. Usually 20feet range with a lot of 2.4ghz interference will kill a lot of bluetooth.

      Sadly bluetooth is in a saturated radio range, and doesn't push much power. When it was first 'designed' it was more viable than when it started getting used as it is today with all the usage in the same range.

      However, for the 'premium' people pay for Apple products, they de
  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @08:07AM (#20821775)
    I am starting to get fed up with OSX - I got a brand new replacement MacBook Pro after going through three weeks of unsuccessful repairs and damage during repair. I continously get dropped Aiport connections along with a ton of errors in system log about ath_intr_proc or something like that. Apple says they are aware of this problem - yeah ok, it's 3 months already. Where is the fix?

    Next, every update kills some applications - 3rd time now, iWeb 2.0.2 update killed the whole iLife set of apps - they no longer start due to missing framework or something. This is a long known bug with Apple's linker dyld which zeroes shared libraries while pre-linking. No word from Apple on when/if it will be fixed - so people have to keep their fingers crossed everytime they do an update. Apple's response for the time being is to replace those zeroed files from install DVD. _ALL_ of my previously reported bugs (some 2 years old now) have had no updates from Apple yet.

    Contrast this with MSFT - The network stall issue is already being worked upon and they handled the whole thing in a good way - there was even Developer interaction. Similarly with slow file copy I was able to talk to their support team and Engineers - a fix is already in place. Recently I tried installling Blackberry software which failed - Vista automatically applied right compatibility settings and restarted the install - it went on successfully. Vista is again very nice with Driver support attempts - Even with 64-bit edition, most of my MacBook Pro hardware gets drivers from Windows update - WHQL certified Silicon Image drivers for my expresscard SATA work flawlessly on Vista - suspend/resume/yanking-the-card all works fine. With Apple I have to download them from obscure Silicon Image website, they are not certified or tested, they crash regularly and even eat my iPod disk for no reason and I have nowhere to go to complain.

    Microsoft is a company built to handle the problems that come with widespread success - Apple is clearly not and they need to recruit to catch up.
    • Re: (Score:2, Funny)

      by Hanners1979 (959741)
      Favourably comparing Microsoft to Apple? With Vista as an example no less? You must be new here. ;)
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      I agree that Apple is stretched beyond its resources at the moment. They've even admitted as much when they delayed the next OS X because they were working on the iPhone. Personally I hate the iPhone, because from what I can tell it's destroying Apple from a company management standpoint. They are dealing with resource constraints now, getting more heavy handed than they have ever been when it came to hacking their devices and pre-announcing products to manage stock price. I wonder if we'll (other apple
    • by Tim Browse (9263)

      Contrast this with MSFT

      What, you mean the way they had a fucked bluetooth stack on XP for about 4 years, and didn't have a bluetooth device driver programme, so that every bluetooth driver has to have the lame "Continue anyway" dialog when installing?

      You're right, that does kind of suck.

    • Having recently dealt with a prelinking issue (10.4.10, G4 400), the key to avoiding such issues is simple...

      LEAVE THE MACHINE ALONE DURING PRELINKING/"OPTIMIZING SYSTEM PERFORMANCE"...

      The use of other applications can potentially interfere with the prelinking process. So, during those times, pretend the machine is radioactive or some such.
  • I'm facing the same problem with my MacBook and tried every recipe available to keep it working (send my MacBook for a 2 or 3 weeks vacation at Apple is not an option right now) and the one that worked for me was to unplug every USB 1.1 device (in my case a mouse and a keyboard connected to an USB hub) and restart the computer.

    I know, it sucks, uptime is now comparable the ones we got with a win9x box, but, at least, it's working.
  • Non-story? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by captainjaroslav (893479) on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @08:14AM (#20821843)
    Anecdotally, I have a MacBook and the Bluetooth has always worked fine, but I realize that anecdotal evidence isn't worth much.

    For the very same reason, I'm not sure if this is a story if the only evidence to support it is a thread or threads on Apple's discussion pages. You hear this all the time: "Hundreds of people are posting to the forums about this problem, but [whatever company, Apple in this example] refused to acknowledge that it's a major problem!" Well, here's the thing, if the company sells millions of computers and a hundred people are having a problem... in fact, let's say that the posters on the forum represent only a small percentage of people that are having the problem, so, it's a few thousand units that have the problem, it's still statistically small, even if it looks like a major issue on the forum and feels like a major issue if it happens to you.

    It's not that it's not important or that Apple shouldn't fix it, it's just that it's not a news story, IMO.

    Posting this to Slashdot with no other links about the story seems like somebody's just looking for an excuse to write a negative Apple story, but maybe that's just my tinfoil hat talking.
    • by elrous0 (869638) *
      People used to say the same thing about the Xbox 360 "Red Ring of Death" problem. At first MS tried to play it coy just as Apple is doing on the Blutooth issue. Then they finally came out and admitted that this problem effected some 30% of all consoles. Anecdotal evidence is just that until you start noticing an obvious pattern involving significant numbers of people. And it looks like this discussion here on /. is running about 2:1 in favor of "I've had blutooth problems on my Mac" vs. "I've not had any pr
  • by Gertlex (722812) on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @08:20AM (#20821881)
    I use just a bluetooth mouse for my everyday computing.

    My Logitech V270 occasionally stops working. The most efficient solution I've found has been to toggle my Dell laptop's bluetooth via the wireless hotkey (Fn + F2 for me), pause, turn off mouse, turn on bluetooth, pause, turn on mouse.

    The fact that it occurs both with and without Logitech's Setpoint software indicates that it's either a hardware problem or bluetooth stack problem. And it's not just me, it's a common complaint on Logitech's forum that has gone unanswered.
  • by Bill_the_Engineer (772575) on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @09:58AM (#20823279)

    I have an Apple Macbook Pro and I've been using bluetooth wireless keyboard, mouse, cellphone, and headset without problems.

    I'm not saying that these people aren't having problems. What I am asking is why this is "news" when the thread is old except a single post that was made this morning (maybe by the submitter?).

    Anyway I'm sure that their problems will be resolved.

    One last thing, it is hard to tell if the old issues were resolved from a forum thread because we depend on the original poster to keep us updated... Some people don't come back and post "Hey I found the problem...".

  • "Widespread Issues" (Score:2, Informative)

    by fauxhammer (1148803)

    Not a day goes by that I don't have a customer asking me if "I know about the problems that Apple is having with ____ product". More often than not its not a widespread problem at all. It's an isolated incident that has happened to a handful of people who have found eachother on Apple's support message board. By far the most common of these loaded questions i frequently receive is "Has Apple fixed the problem with the laptops running unbearably hot?"

    The most common "widespread" problems that I see (and I w

    • by seb785 (1166045)
      I have to tell you that the "warranty extension programs" are a joke for me. I experienced those power supply problems on my iMac G5 (in 07/2006). There was already such a "warranty extension program" setup for the iMac. Call to Apple FRANCE (I was in that country) and they tell me to BRING (no shipping possible) the computer to an Apple repair center so that they can determine if it is covered by the program (a one an half hour drive each way). Then I was told that it was not exactly the problem describe
  • I have been through TWO Rev A Macbooks. The first one was so unreliable and faulty, our (excellent) dealer (Micro Anvika, London) replaced it a few weeks after purchase. My second one, now a year old, has suffered ongoing problems related to sleep. a) After logging in, it would go back to sleep and be very difficult to wake up using a combination of closing and opening the lid or getting impatient and doing a data losing hard restart. b) The machine would simply not wake up from sleep or wake up with the po
  • I was planning to buy a MacBook Pro as a Linux laptop (Kubuntu or Gentoo). It looked like a powerful and reasonably priced thing; from the howtos etc. I've read I've seen that probably it is not straightforward to have Linux running flawlessly on it, but it's nevertheless doable. However I'm constantly hearing of hardware horror stories about the MacBook Pro, this one being only the last: see here [wikipedia.org] for example. Is the Macbook Pro really so bad? Is, let's say, a Sony VAIO, better or I am hearing more noise ab

  • I bought a good-quality bluetooth headset a few months ago, intending to use it for Skype VOIP on my first-gen MacBook Pro. The reason I didn't get a USB headset is that I wanted to be able to move around while talking. Bluetooth is advertised to have a thirty-foot range, so I should have been able to connect from anywhere in my apartment.

    Well the real range is about two feet, and only if I keep the laptop and the headset in a precise orientation with respect to each other. Otherwise I get a loud crack

    • by jasonwea (598696) *

      I have the same problem with a Jabra BT200 and my new Jawbone. The Jabra works well on my Nokia 6230 and the Jawbone works brilliantly. On my MacBook Pro however, both cause bad crackling and latency. Disabling Airport doesn't help.

      Jawbone's FAQ [jawbone.com] says "Right now, we're not supporting PC or MAC Bluetooth compatibility due to the large variability in the performance of computer Bluetooth systems.". That doesn't sound good.

      It's totally useless so I'm just using the built in mike with headphones. Vastly supe

  • Yeah, my brand new Macbook Pro often will not connect to my Wii remote, which is really annoying. I don't know if it's a Max problem or a problem with the laptop, but sometimes it takes 10 minutes of clicking "connect" to get it to actually connect.
  • by guruevi (827432) <evi@smok[ ]cube.be ['ing' in gap]> on Tuesday October 02, 2007 @02:02PM (#20826993) Homepage
    A lot of interference on both Bluetooth and WiFi can be traced back to microwaves, cheap electronics and so forth. Why I say that? Simple: my neighbour starts cooking and I get interference on WiFi, I start cooking and I get no WiFi, I replace microwave with new model and WiFi is strong as ever. Everything that has something to do with waves or radiography these days is in the 2,4GHz band. It used to be the 433MHz band that wasn't useable, now it's the 2,4GHz band.

    Especially cheap/sloppy electronics and landline wireless phones. Manufacturers think they can use the whole spectrum at full blast to just send an 8-bit code in serial to the receiver (those cheap 'radio' remote controls). If you look at the circuitry basically it's an excited crystal that is extremely amped up (which adds lots of sideband noise if you put it on a scope), somewhat filtered with a small capacitor and what we used to call either a resistor or coil is now just a little squiggle on the printboard. And for the wireless phones, I have seen those things eat up literally 6 WiFi channels at the same time every time it is used.

    And yes, Bluetooth, WiFi and the likes are all on 2,4GHz and as long as the FCC keeps their thumb on and only gives us very little of the air (or ether if you're really old) to use. For the rest of the air you have to pay big licensing costs.
  • This may be anecdotal, but the only machines that I've heard have been affected by the BT 'unavailable' issue are the Intel Macs. I have a G4 PBook, as do my wife and several of my friends, also have a G5 iMac all have BT and NONE of them have ever had a pervasive issue like this. I've once had to reset the PMU on the PBook after I got the 'hardware missing' BT icon in the menubar, but never had another issue with it since. To be honest I don't use BT much, but whenever I've needed it, it's been flawless.
  • I really dont think there are any bugs in it at all. It might be to good as a matter of fact. Recently I was trying to pair my cell phone with a bluetooth headset and I picked up the bluetooth signal from someones mac book that lives three apartments over. I'd have to say it works pretty good.

HELP!!!! I'm being held prisoner in /usr/games/lib!

Working...