Do I really need 3G on an iPad?

I am trying to decide if I should purchase an iPad with 3G or not. I have heard that mobil internet access is not used alot my the average person. What is the cost of 3G! You pay an extra $200 approx when purchasing the iPad with 3G and also the ongiong cost of using 3G. I don't want to buy a Wi-fi only model and end up wishing I had spent the extra for the 3G. Help!

geek_rlb1, Apr 14, 7:18 am

Do you think you will need internet access while you are out and about!

Do you have a smartphone that you could use as a '3g access point'!

geek_patxyz, Apr 14, 7:23 am

If you can afford the extra it is worth it. You dont need it connected on a plan each month. Just get a microsim card and top up when you go away or think you are going to use it if that makes sense! If there is no credit in there then it cant take it. A bit like a prepaid plan with a cell phone.i take mine whEn we go away and connect it then only.

geek_everglade4fun, Apr 14, 7:25 am

If its only ocassional use you are much better off tethering to a smart phone - you can just about buy a basic model with the $200 you save by buying the wifi only iPad

geek_vtecintegra, Apr 14, 12:27 pm

If you have Wireless Internet at home and intend to mainly use your iPad around the home then, nope. If you intend to use out and about and to access the Web while away from home, then yes.

geek_massived, Apr 14, 1:53 pm

I bought a 3G model and havnt used the 3G at all. I got free data on my cell phone plan so use that instead. My cellphone basically turns into the wireless modern required to use the wifi on the iPad.

geek_carlie, Apr 15, 9:38 am

I was thinking the same thing when I was buying my ipad. I ended up getting the 3G model only because I knew if I didn't I would regret it.

geek_shagged, Apr 15, 9:42 am

Yeah if you're going to waste money on an iPad, why not waste $200 more.

geek__sms_, Apr 15, 10:57 am

Also i think GPS receivers are part of the 3G module. i believe that's the case with the ipad2 not sure about the ipad3.

geek_acura, Apr 15, 12:13 pm

I bought the ipad without the 3g and regret it now as for so many apps need you need to be online while out and about e.g. Navman.vtechintegra, I'd be very interested to know how I can tether my ipad to a smart phone please!Sorry, I don't currently have a smart phone, so this is a genuine question.

geek_deecee2, Apr 15, 5:03 pm

We decided against it.Most places you go these days have wireless internet you can tap into (legally, of course) and the 3G network is quite expensive (even for your phones IMO).An ipad (unless sitting on your partners lap) is too big to use as a navman anyway.

geek_gardie, Apr 15, 5:10 pm

I see this being talked about but don't really understand.

geek_neillo1, Apr 15, 5:40 pm

Tethering is where you setup your phone as a wireless access point - doing this you can allow another device (eg an ipad) to connect to your and access the net via you data connection to your telco provider. This can be done with android and iPhones (depends on the OS release in both cases).

geek_acura, Apr 15, 5:45 pm

With an iPhone thethering to an iPad this also passes GPS location from the iPhone to the iPad apparently. I have tried this with my android phone to the iPad. I'm unsure about GPS locations being passes on. Reception at my place is not the best - so inconclusive at this stage IMO.

geek_acura, Apr 15, 5:48 pm

OK - kind of understand. So whose data do you use!

geek_neillo1, Apr 15, 5:50 pm

Data! As in 3G data or faster. As in the data network you use on your cellphone to access the Internet from your phone. Make sense!

geek_acura, Apr 15, 5:52 pm

I see - so your phone basically acts as a kind of proxy for your normal internet connection.

geek_neillo1, Apr 15, 6:26 pm

No, not really.Your iPad uses/shares your phone's internet (mobile internet, 3G, whatever you want to call it) connection.

geek_dunedin_ree, Apr 15, 6:32 pm

So is it your phone's connection to your internet then!

geek_neillo1, Apr 15, 6:55 pm

Thank you, I understand now.

geek_deecee2, Apr 15, 7:18 pm

You keep saying "your internet".

You have to understand that we are not talking about your home broadband/dialup.We're talking about your phone's 3g/mobile internet connection.

geek_dunedin_ree, Apr 15, 7:22 pm

what if you haven't got an Iphone. Can you still play games on an Ipad if you don't have 3G eg out watching cricket in a field

geek_kimbo24, Apr 15, 7:38 pm

OK - was confused by # 13. So just using your phone's internet connection then. Simple.

geek_neillo1, Apr 15, 7:38 pm

How is watching cricket in a field (which sounds like streaming video) the same as playing a game!

geek_dunedin_ree, Apr 15, 7:39 pm

what I was saying is.if i take an Ipad without 3g out and about and my child wants to play games on it will it be all tickety Boo!

geek_kimbo24, Apr 15, 7:44 pm

Yes unless you were wanting to play a game that is an online game. The 3G would allow you to access the internet while out and about. But games and apps for the most part do not require 3G to play or use. About the only games and apps that would are location based like a GPS app or an online game or service.

geek_massived, Apr 15, 7:57 pm

I can only couple my iPad2 to my iPhone, not to other (non-Apple) smart phones with 3G connection.

geek_ladeda, Apr 15, 8:00 pm

You can use any phone that can create a wifi hotspot - this is most Android phones

geek_vtecintegra, Apr 15, 8:07 pm

my phone won't work with my IPad, works with my laptop tho!

geek_soft_furnishing, Apr 15, 9:36 pm

Ok, so I have my iphone and I have my non 3G ipad. What exactly is the process to access the internet on my ipad while outdoors.
I really do need to have it spelt out. Im a late starter.

geek_janz4, Apr 16, 7:14 pm

3G is becoming abbsoulte . 4g is the new thing , its faster and better, but i doubt new zeland will see it within the next 5- 10 years

geek_justnewbie, Apr 16, 7:18 pm

Depends on the phone

geek_vtecintegra, Apr 16, 7:42 pm

On iPhone: Settings -> Personal Hotspot -> On

On iPad:Settings -> General ->Bluetooth -> On
- Then in same setting, under devices, look for your iPhone and tap "not connected" to "connect" (this last bit must be done everytime you turn on the iPad)

When at home, both iPhone and iPad default to your home wifi so you don't have to worry about either of them using up your mobile data.

geek_ladeda, Apr 16, 8:01 pm

I got one with wireless.
We have wifi at home and the cafes I frequent and work has wifi.
There are few places where I think 'wish I had G3'. We are happy with our choice

geek_duckmoon, Apr 17, 5:25 pm


geek_ladeda, Apr 17, 7:48 pm

You can also get a 3G wireless hotspot device and use it to serve your iPad and any other wireless device in the vicinity. I'm familiar with the Netgear 3G24W which connects to Telecom XT and is powered by USB port (ie a mains or car charger or laptop port)

The battery powered MyZone is more portable

Of course these are close to the price diff for a 3G iPad but can be used on multiple devices and good if you have an ipad already.

geek_gj, Apr 17, 8:22 pm

ipad will only be able to sync and use 3g from phone if u have an iphone it dosnt work with other phones

geek_bigboi22, Apr 17, 11:00 pm

^ Not true at all.

geek_pyro_sniper2002, Apr 17, 11:10 pm

i am a complete luddite and i managed to connect my ipad 2 to the internet via my motorola defy as a wireless hotspot today. literally took less than ten seconds to figure it out. so bigboi22 clearly you are wrong

geek_skiff1, Apr 19, 10:54 pm

My iPhone is the smartest phone I have owned and my previous sort-of-smart phone, which is 3G and can be used as bluetooth modem for my laptop, doesn't have a wifi hotspot setting so can't be used with the iPad. Obviously some phones are smarter than others, LOL.

geek_ladeda, Apr 20, 8:36 am

The question is really do you NEED an iPad. For most of the population that would be a "No".

geek_tonyrockyhorror, Apr 20, 10:07 am

Bought mine wifi only and got an pocket wifi modem for $50.cheaper than forking out extra $200

geek_doctor_evil99, Apr 21, 12:08 am