I am tasked with writing a setup guide for my university's network.

Directing my users to the Wifi pulldown menu on a Mac, do I ask them to click the "AirPort" button or the "AirMac" button?

Please note that in Japan, it is called AirMac, but in the States, it is called AirPort.

Which naming is more common in the world?

3 Answers 3


Apple used AirPort as their marketing name for 802.11 Wi-Fi. Due to legal reasons it was called AirMac in Japan. AirPort was used for all hardware products (access points, routers, cards). It was also used everywhere in Mac OS X in the user interface.

For a couple of years now the use of the word AirPort is restricted to hardware products (e.g. AirPort Express). OS X and iOS use Wi-Fi (or local variants like WLAN for German) to refer to 802.11 networking in the user interface (menu bar and system settings). See these screenshots with the old AirPort and new Wi-Fi word use.

AiPort in old version os OS X

old airport

Wi-Fi in current version of OS X in Japanese, English, German. Screenshots from the support document Apple's website Kyle found.

wifi english wifi japan wlan german


Apple's Internationalization Resources

Apple provide a wonderful set of glossaries and tools to help with internationalization. These include translation strings for popular languages.

From Apple's internationlization page, look for AppleGlot and Localization Glossaries. After logging in using your Apple ID, filter the downloadable files by name; try both Gloss and Glot. The following result will appear for Gloss:

Glossaries - OS X

The newest translations of strings from OS X 10.9.2 are available here. These files can be used by AppleGlot as translators to help streamline the localization process. These files can all be viewed with TextEdit in Mac OS X.

The glossary files are designed for use with AppleGlot but are viewable using a text editor. The lg files are XML formatted.

Within these glossary files you will find pairs of phrases in English and the counter part language. Inside NetworkProf.lg the following two sets appear:

    <base loc="en">wireless, 802.11, wifi, wi-fi, AirPort</base>
    <tran loc="ja">wireless ワイヤレス ワイアレス 無線, 802.11, wifi ワイファイ, wi-fi ワイ・ファイ, AirPort エアポート エアーポート AirMac エアマック エアーマック</tran>


  <Description> airport status summary strings </Description>
    <base loc="en">%@ is turned on but is not connected to a network.</base>
    <tran loc="ja">%@ は入になっていますが、ネットワークには接続されていません。</tran>

I expect these will be a treasure trove of help for your translation.


I have found this page, which shows that Apple uses the term "Wi-Fi menu".


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