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Apple Watch Series 3 struggles to connect to LTE

A WiFi bug will make it choose 'captive' networks like Starbucks over LTE.
Mallory Locklear, @mallorylocklear
September 20, 2017
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For those awaiting their new Apple Watch Series 3, be prepared for some connectivity issues. The Verge's Lauren Goode reports that during her review of the new smartwatch, it frequently struggled to connect to LTE and often linked to an unknown WiFi network instead. While surfing, and away from WiFi signals, Goode says that her watch either had a single bar of service or no service at all. And her connectivity issues spanned across two separate sample units. The Wall Street Journal reported similar issues with LTE, also across multiple watches.

Apple later told The Verge, "We have discovered that when Apple Watch Series 3 joins unauthenticated WiFi networks without connectivity, it may at times prevent the watch from using cellular. We are investigating a fix for a future software release." As iMore explains, the problem can occur when the Watch is in range of a WiFi network with a captive interstitial page (and away from a paired iPhone), like the ones used at coffee shops or hotels. But there's no word on when that update will arrive.

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