M1, M2 MacBook Users Reportedly Facing Wi-Fi Connectivity Issues on Commercial Networks

Slow speeds and dropped connections seem to be the main complaints.

M1, M2 MacBook Users Reportedly Facing Wi-Fi Connectivity Issues on Commercial Networks

M1, M2 MacBook Pro users seem to be severely affected

  • Recent macOS updates are seemingly the cause of this issue
  • Disabling AWDL is a temporary solution
  • Apple is aware and is said to be working on a fix

If you've recently experienced slow Wi-Fi speeds or frequent drops in Internet connection on your M1 or M2 MacBook at work, then you're not alone. A recent report has identified multiple complaints of Wi-Fi connection issues with Apple silicon-powered MacBooks when connected to some office networks. The issue is said to have occurred after Apple released recent security updates to macOS Ventura. There is a temporary workaround for this issue and the report mentions that Apple is working on a more permanent fix, although there's no information on when the update will be rolled out.

The report comes via Meter, a San Francisco-based technology company that provides Internet infrastructure for businesses. The company states that M1 and M2 MacBook users have complained of slow Internet performance, dropped connections during Zoom calls, and losing Wi-Fi connectivity altogether, when using certain office Wi-Fi networks.

This issue has been reported by multiple Wi-Fi vendors for organisations as well as education institutions such as UCLA, in the US, as per the report, which states that the issue has to do with Apple's AWDL (Apple Wireless Direct Link) interface, which is used for features such as AirDrop and AirPlay.

The company states that the emergence of the issues correlates with recent macOS and iOS updates on October 24 and November 9, respectively, which appear to interfere with the Wi-Fi connection when AWDL is enabled. Meter states that M1 and M2 MacBook Pro models seem to be the worst affected. Disabling AWDL appears to have an immediate improvement in Wi-Fi performance and Meter has outlined the steps needed to do this in its report.

The company also states that you are unlikely to face this issue at home, since the demand on your MacBook's Wi-Fi radio isn't as stressful as it would in some commercial setups. Hopefully, we should have a more permanent solution from Apple in a future update.

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Further reading: Apple, Macbook M1, Macbook M2
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