Netgear Router Slows down when you get too close?

My brother just got a Netgear router – the WGR614 I think. He’s noticed that whenever he gets close to it, like within 10 feet, his Toshiba M2V laptop (Intel 802.11G chipset) drops to 11 Mbps or less. Somtimes down to 2 Mbps. Works full speed from greater distances and even through walls. Anyone ever seen anything like that? Some weird radio phenomena?

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