Problem: Some users may experience dropped WiFi connections after upgrading to Apple iOS 14. Has something happened?
Context: Apple has committed to protecting the privacy of its users. With the recent release of iOS 14, a unique MAC address (device identifier) is generated for each network that a user might connect with. This defeats common methods for un-consented tracking of user movements.
Unfortunately, the Apple privacy protection may interfere with the device management strategy in use by some home or institutional networks (especially with mesh network extenders) and some virtual private networks. Symptoms include the mobile device reverting to cellular data use, even when an approved WiFi signal is strong.
Solution: Users experiencing problems can turn off private MAC addresses by going to network settings on their mobile device, selecting the affected WiFi network, viewing its properties, then turning off the "Private Address" feature.