Ben Miller of Sniff WiFi comments:
About a year and a half ago, yours truly wrote about WiFi transmit power levels in iPhones. Things have changed since then. And possibly the biggest change (to iPhones, at least) is how aggressive iPhones are in modifying transmit power levels.
In the “Mighty iPhone Power Ranges” blog post, I wrote about the value of setting AP transmit power levels to approximately the same level as client/station device power levels. Over the past year or so, more and more client/station devices have started using adaptive power levels. A typical implementation would force a device to lower its transmit power when receiving a strong signal from the AP and raise its transmit power when the AP’s signal is weak.
A reminder that you need to test, test, then test again when new devices come out to make sure that everything matches with the way you expect it to act. Turning down the radio power is great for battery life. Not so great for reception.
Read more at: Mighty iPhone Power Ranges II (With iPads)