Users who work on multiple wireless networks may find native managers insufficient. AirRader for Mac provides additional wireless management options in a relatively easy-to-use format.
AirRader for Mac is available as a free trial version with a 15-day limit. The full, unrestricted version requires a $19.95 payment. The download was fast and the program's native installer was well designed. The installer did require acceptance of a user agreement and a pop-up prompted payment to access the full version, but this was easily dismissed. The menu's major options available to the user are relatively easy to locate and the graphics associated with these buttons were clear. There is also support for updates and the program can be set to automatically check for them. In terms of functioning, the program searches for and displays available networks, although the placement of the search button is in an odd location. Networks are sorted according to their signal strength and placed in categories such as security, public, and general networks. The list was easy to read and additional options graphed the results and saved favorites.
For those users who frequently use different wireless networks, AirRadar for Mac works well and allows some additional features beyond native managers.
Editors' note: This is a review of the trial version of AirRadar for Mac 2.3.
From Koingo Software:
Scanning for wireless networks is now easier and more personalized. AirRadar allows you to scan for open networks and tag them as favourites or filter them out. View detailed network information, graph network signal strength, and automatically join the best open network in range. Whether you are driving around looking for wireless networks, stuck in traffic, sitting on the beach, or if you are curious how strong your wireless signal is at home, AirRadar provides a more linear approach to network hunting. Setup a scan frequency, and have new open or closed networks have their name spoken, play alerts, or display notifications. Various other options allow you to customize your network list further, including assigning colors to best open networks and sound cues. Download it today, and take the hardship out of getting an internet connection at a critical time.
Easy install. Simple user interface. Accurate information.
Probably over priced at $20, however, it is the only product that works with Snow Leopard. Also does not give an absolute rating of signal strength, only a "percentage"??????
Given that the Mac OS doesn't provide a signal strength indicator (other than the bars on the radar icon) if you have intermittent service interruptions, you need a separate app to give you the information the OS doesn't. None of the free options works with Snow Leopard at this point (9/27/09), this was the only option. The only drawback, as noted, is that it gives the user a "percentage" as an indication of signal strength. While that is fine if you are trying to look at the relative signal strength of one network versus another, it doesn't really help you trouble shoot whether your airport/time capsule/wireless router is operating per specs or needs to be replaced.
Updated on Oct 2, 2009
My bad. There is an option in the Preferences window to enable results to be shown as absolute signal strength.
... This review was originally posted on VersionTracker.com. The developer certainly has every right to start charging for his product but doesn't have the right to continue calling it "free" in the product description area of VersionTracker through two update cycles.
A response from VT admin said the developers write the descriptions and upload them so there's absolutely no doubt where the blame lies.
...g This review was originally posted on VersionTracker.com. This developer says his product is free, but it isn't. How can he get away with writing in its description that "The best part ? AirRadar is absolutely free!" but then setup its installer to inform us that it costs $9.95 after the 15-day trial??? Are our standards of decency so low that we'll put up with this duplicity?
There are at least 2 or 3 much better and truly free wireless scanner/stumbler apps currently available, like AP Grapher (available at VersionTracker.com and MacUpdate.com) and KisMAC (only listed at MacUpdate.com). Seriously, check out their descriptions and you'll quickly determine that they're vastly superior to Airradar, and you can easily download and try them out because they don't require you to pay money just to evaluate their capabilities and long term stability.
Should we teach this developer and others like him a lesson by boycotting not only AirRadar but also Koingo Software's other apps, like Data Guardian, MacPilot, Image Smith, Display Maestro, Amnesia, MacCleanse, Librarian Pro, Digital Sentry, and Alarm Clock Pro? IMHO, lately some software developers (and many other types of business) have been behaving greedier and greedier ? perhaps as a result of the recession, but that does not excuse the trend. I feel now is a good time to remind businesses of all kinds that consumers respond best to high quality products, reasonable pricing, generous customer support, and responsible environmental stewardship. Maybe a broad and concerted effort like that, when money is tight, could turn around or at least limit the tendency of businesses to cut corners, move offshore, unjustifiably raise prices, and otherwise behave like pigs.
This review was originally posted on VersionTracker.com. AirRadar is a simple and unsophisticated app which tells you just a little bit more than what you'll get from the built-in apple software. It has nowhere near the power of apps such as Kismac and APGrapher (which I recommend), both of which are both free.
The developer has added a fee to this product but not provided a single new feature. Even worse, installing overwrites the previous version, then asks you to pay for it after the fact, so I can't review this release at all because there is no trial period. And I can't revert to the previous release because it's been overwritten.
Ultimately, I don't care. There are way better programs out there that don't cost a dime. But my one-star review (and many others I'm sure) will send this program to the bottom of the Versiontracker junk pile.