05-20-2011 11:37 PM
For three days I tried to connect my PlayBook at a large tennis club that has 2 unsecured wireless access points for member use. It failed every time, despite my trying many suggestions I could find in various forums. Of course, I could not reset the wireless routers as suggested by some, since they were not mine.The error message always was "connection timed out". My Blackberry 9800 Torch connected to both access points every time without a hitch, whereas the PlayBook did not.
So today I decided to conduct an experiment.
Armed with (A) PlayBook, (B) Blackberry 9800, (C) Older Asus laptop, (D) new Asus netbook, I went searching for open wireless networks. I found 4 within a short driving distance, where I tried connecting the 4 devices. Here are my results:
1) Large McDonald's - all 4 devices connected
2) Small Starbucks in a strip mall - 3 devices connected but not the PlayBook
3) Local public library - 3 devices connected but not the PlayBook
4) Private residence, unsecured network - all 4 devices connected
5) My secure home network - all 4 devices connected
6) Large tennis club, unsecured network - 3 devices connected but not the PlayBook
It appears that the PlayBook has a bug which prevents it from connecting to some wireless networks, when, my Blackberry 9800 smartphone and two portable computers connect very fast. Sure hope RIM solves the problem very soon, because. in my opinion, this is a major issue that cripples the use of the PlayBook as a business tool.
05-21-2011 08:06 PM
I just read a good review of some PlayBook issues by an IT professional. His screen name is "swotam". One of the issues he notes is the inability to make and keep some Wi-Fi connection. I've taken the liberty to copy and paste his comment below:
"It may have just been the device we had, but I had endless issues with WiFi connectivity. Of the 3 WiFi networks we have on site (1 Open, 1 WPA2, 1 802.11x), the only one I was able to successfully connect to and use was the WPA2 network. Despite connecting to the Open network and (with certificate installed) the 802.11x network and receiving an IP address and other network info I was completely unable to access anything using these networks, no Internet access, no Ping test, nothing. The device didn't give any indication of a problem, it just failed to access anything when using these networks. Very annoying but I can chalk that up to perhaps being an issue with the device we received (I hope).
We also ran into odd behavior where the Playbook would lose connection to the WiFi network after 10 minutes of inactivity despite showing that it was connected. I either had to turn WiFi off and then on, or reboot the device to clear things up."
05-24-2011 01:13 PM
Have a look at this article on Troubleshooting Wi-Fi and networking on the BlackBerry PlayBook: http://www.blackberry.com/btsc/KB26096
05-25-2011 08:21 AM
Thank you for pointing me to Blackberry's article about troubleshooting Wi-Fi and networking on the PlayBook. I did try all applicable suggestions before, without any success. Yesterday I was on an airporter bus that has a Wi-Fi hotspot. My Blackberry 9800 Torch phone and ASUS 1015PX netbook connected, but the PlayBook failed to connect with the familiar message "timed out". So, the mystery continues why my PlayBook doesn't connect to some public hotspots.
05-26-2011 11:07 PM
Today I went to a gym that has an unsecured Wi-Fi hot spot in the lounge. The PlayBook showed the wireless access point had maximum signal. Yet, when I clicked to connect, I received the same message as in other public hot spots, that the connection attempt timed out. I then tried my Blackberry 9800 Torch and an ASUS netbook, and they both connected very fast.. I have not been able to connect my PlayBook at most public hot spots I tried. This is a serious issue for me; sure hope that someone at RIM is working to figure out a solution soon