For the last few days, rumors and complaints have been circulating on the Web about the new MacBook Air's failure to connect to the Internet. On a brand-new machine that was touted at Apple Inc.'s
(NASDAQ:AAPL) Worldwide Developers Conference just weeks ago as having super fast WiFi connectivity with its 802.11ac wireless card, this has naturally led to growing frustrations.
The problem is simple: Many users have found that their WiFi connection will not stay connected. But the cause is still unknown. It could be a problem with OSX networking software, it could be a problem with hardware, like the wireless antenna, or as some bloggers have postulated, it could be that users are holding the MacBook Air the wrong way. With the new laptop starting at $999, consumers are anxious to discover the problem.
According to a source at Apple, the company sent a message to AppleCare and Apple Store Genius Bar employees: "In the United States, Apple Geniuses and Advisors should capture MacBook Air (13-inch, Mid 2013) and MacBook Air (11-inch, Mid 2013) computers with any WiFi issues." By "capture," the company means physically gather the affected laptops from consumers, and send them back to Apple, where they will undergo diagnostics and testing to both find and solve the problem.
Apple's stock price is down 6.15% in the past five days of trading. The news of faulty MacBook Airs may have contributed to that decline (along with the overall weakness of the market), but another segment of Apple's business bears the brunt of the burden, and that's the iPhone. And oddly enough, the new Samsung Electronics Ltd.
(OTCMKTS:SSNLF) Galaxy S4 is to blame.
According to Bernstein Global Wealth Management's Toni Sacconaghi, one of the reasons behind Apple's latest slump is that "Samsung's high-end product [is] perhaps not fulfilling expectations about the high-end of the smartphone market." And though the Galaxy S4 had a strong debut in March and sold 10 million units within the first month, the company significantly missed its estimates of 14 million to 15 million units sold. Many analysts, including Sacconaghi, believe that if Samsung can't sell its expected number of high-end phones, neither will Apple.
Add in the Wi-Fi trouble on the brand-new MacBook Air, and Apple is in a bit of a pickle.
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