Addressing the complaints
Things are not helped by Apple suggesting solutions that do not obviously address the core of the users' complaints. Apple has acknowledged that, under certain conditions, the iPad may not automatically rejoin a known Wi-Fi network after restart or waking from sleep. The issue can occur with some third-party Wi-Fi routers supporting multiple bands when users use the same network name for each network or use different security settings for each network, Apple said.
But what the vast majority of contributors to the support forum are complaining about is weak and dropped signals and generally worse connectivity than they have experienced on previous Apple products. And solutions which require changes to router settings are not practical when users expect to connect to third-party hubs at work, in libraries, bookshops and airports.
That might be the Wintel way, but these iPad users clearly EXPECTED a similar experience to that enjoyed with previous Apple products and it is this failed expectation that is potentially Apple's biggest problem.
In fact it would be better for Apple if there IS an engineering problem. At least then there could be an engineering solution. If it's a hardware problem it may require a recall which could be expensive, depending on the number of units affected. If it's a software problem, then a downloadable patch might help. Oh, yes download is the problem!
But if Apple insists it is not an engineering problem then the company has committed the ultimate marketing sin of failing to meet the expectations of its customers.
And then, instead of buying additional units and acting as word-of-mouth advocates for the product, those customers return their products to the store and tell potential buyers to steer clear not just of the product but of the company as well.
Related links and articles:
Kindle advocate praises iPad
Reviews for iPad are mixed
Another tech firm says iPad infringes patent