Mac mini M1 has problems with Bluetooth

There were already problems with Bluetooth connectivity on the 2018 Mac mini and now the M1 Mac mini also seems to be afflicted, based on posts on Reddit.

Reports suggest that keyboards and mice from Apple, and third-party manufacturers such as Logitech, keep losing their Bluetooth connection – making the Mac mini virtually unusable. Apple’s AirPods are also affected by the problem.

In Apple’s forums, users also complain that the new Macs do not work properly with Bluetooth accessories (1, 2, 3). Similar problems have also been reported on the MacRumors forums.

It is still unclear whether this is a hardware problem or a problem with the software. Apple has not yet responded. In the forums, users report that the problem has been resolved if a USB receiver is used with the mouse or keyboard.

The problem with the defective Bluetooth connections on a Mac mini is not new – it was already reported to afflict the model from 2018 (including the Intel model still on sale). Apparently, it even affected the Mac mini from 2012.

The issue could relate to the interference signal from the USB 3.0 peripherals, which is mainly transmitted in the 2.4 to 2.5GHz range. A solution to the problem could be to use a USB 3 hub that can shield such interference signals.

Apple published a support document relating to this in 2014 and has updated it on a number of occasions since. The manufacturer does not recommend placing USB or Thunderbolt devices on a Mac mini’s case. Instead USB devices should be as far away from the housing as possible and you should use the high-quality shielded USB or Thunderbolt cables to avoid the connection cables sparking.

It remains to be seen whether Apple can fix the problem. If the cause is USB interference, the error can only be remedied by changing the setup of your desk.

Here’s how the M1 Mac mini compares to the Intel model still on sale: Mac mini (M1) vs Mac mini (Intel).

If you are going to buy a Mac mini don’t pay full price: Check out our best Mac mini deals.

This article originally appeared on Macwelt. Translation by Karen Haslam.

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