iPad mini iPad Mini WiFi vs LTE

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Macnificant, Nov 15, 2012.

  1. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Feb 26, 2008
    #1
    I am considering buying the iPad Mini but cant decide between the WiFi and LTE.

    I have the iPhone 5 and was thinking about just getting the WiFi version and tethering the iPhone to the Mini when I am away from WiFi access.

    Does anyone see any problems with this idea? Saves $120!
     
  2. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2008
    #2
    That what I was planning on doing but the main reason I wanted a mini is for a media player/gps for my cars. The wifi would only use wifi hotspots for GPS and wouldnt use my gps on my phone which is what I was hoping for. So I ordered the LTE model and taking my wifi back to Target this weekend.
     
  3. macrumors 65816

    sweetbrat

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2009
    Location:
    Redford, MI
    #3
    That's what I'm doing, except that I have a 4S. Just something to keep in mind, the tethering link seems to only stay open if you're actively using the Mini. So if you set it aside for a few minutes, then pick it up to use it again, you'll most likely have to reconnect it to the phone. It's not a difficult process, but it is mildly annoying. I wish the connection could be forced to stay open so that all my iMessages and other notifications would come through on the Mini, but it doesn't seem to work that way. I see them come in on the phone, then tether the Mini to the phone if there's something I want to do on it.
     
  4. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2012
    #4
    Tethering is a battery drain and pain in the ---.

    If you are going to take the device out and about, investing in the LTE model is well worth it, which also has GPS.
     
  5. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2005
    Location:
    Orlando, Florida
    #5
    I just prefer the always on ubiquitous connection I get from having an LTE version. Plus adding it to my existing VZW plan will only cost $10 per month. I'm fine with that balanced against the convenience.
     
  6. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2011
    Location:
    34°55′42″N 80°44′41″W (34.
    #6
    If your on Verizon you will not be able to receive calls while tethered.
     
  7. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 13, 2012
    #7
    Being able to turn it on and have data there, ready to go, is well worth it.

    I used a wifi model and had to give it back, because I found it useless, unless you solely keep it in your house.
     
  8. macrumors 6502

    Rhyalus

    Joined:
    Mar 4, 2011
    #8
    Are you guys talking about mobile hot spot functionality or "tethering" via some cable?

    The phone absolutely does work and can receive calls while using it as a hotspot.

    OP, I use my mobile hotspot when the ipad needs a connection and wifi is not available. The point mentioned by someone else is valid; if you need GPS on the pad, it is best to go with the LTE model.

    FYI, on Verizon it only costs another $20/month to add the pad to your contract if you have one of the share everything plans.

    R
     
  9. macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Nov 15, 2012
    #9
    Just an fyi...tethering issues with iPad mini

    If you do some searches you will find MANY people having issues with the iPad mini tethering to the iPhone like me (just bought mine).

    I end up having to use bluetooth since it's not connecting properly to the hotspot on my iPhone 4 whereas it was no problem for my previous iPad.

    I'm probably going to bring the two wifi only iPads back and get the LTE versions when they have stock up here.

    Cheers.
     
  10. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 23, 2012
    #10
    It's just easier to get the LTE version. But if your ipad stays home, don't bother.

    1. Doesn't kill battery life of your phone.

    2. Isn't a PITA to always have to go to phone first, turn on, then connect with ipad.

    3. LTE ipad is only 10 more per month on a data sharing plan.

    4. On Verizon, voice and tethering don't mix well.

    Adds GPS which is cool for the kiddo to see Maps as we're traveling though it might work the same tethered. Probably needed for the navigation apps though.
     
  11. macrumors 65816

    sweetbrat

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2009
    Location:
    Redford, MI
    #11
    Can you explain what the problem is, what happens? I've been tethering mine, and it seems to work fine besides that the connection stops when it's not in use. From what I understand, though, that's normal behavior when tethering.

    It is, but it's also an extra $120 upfront, and that should be taken into consideration, as well.
     
  12. macrumors 6502a

    ScottNWDW

    Joined:
    Jul 10, 2008
    Location:
    Orlando, Florida
    #12
    It really depends on what you plan on using it for and where. When the iPad first came out a few years ago, my original intention was to get WiFi + 3G, but I couldn't wait for the 3G version and bought the WiFi. I have never looked back. I now have an iPad 3 and just bought the WiFi iPad mini the other day. When I look at where I use my iPads, there is almost always a WiFi connection whether it be at home, work, the mall etc. There have been a few occasions where I wish I was able to connect, but in those instances my iPhone was there and I could use that for those brief times. I seriously considered the Wi-Fi LTE iPad mini this time around but when I thought about where I was likely to use it the most often, all those places had Wi-Fi readily available so I decided to get the 64GB Wi-Fi as opposed to the 32GB Wi-Fi+LTE. In the over two years that I have had an iPad I can probably count on one hand the number of times I wish I had the 3G or LTE version.
     
  13. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 9, 2012
    #13
    I have had two iPads: one iPad 3 64GB LTE and an iPad 2 64GB 3G. I have used the iPad 2 3G once last year when I bought it to test out AT&T. Then on I never used the 3G and I never even activated my iPad 3 LTE not even once!

    I bought it mainly for the GPS capabilities. I've used that a number of times but now I have an iPhone 5 I use that with navigon.

    When I got my ipad mini I chose the 64GB wifi only. Because I would almost never get a chance to use the wireless carriers. I feel size is more important because if I didn't have a connection I could still copy my music and videos with 64GB I'd have room to spare.
     
  14. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Nov 30, 2010
    #14
    I'm having a hard time deciding between the two. I have a hotspot already, so I was thinking about getting just the wifi version, but I can get $100 off the cellular version. What I am think is that the cellular version will have a better resale value? I'm only comparing both 16GB's. Thoughts/opinions. Thanks!
     
  15. macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Oct 16, 2012
    #15
    For Verizon it's $10/month for ONLY 2 GB. Anything after that is an additional $15/GB. There are larger plans but they are more expensive so it doesn't seem worth it. Very frustrating.
     
  16. Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #16
    I'd like the LTE version but I cannot justify the price and I generally don't need constant internet access so tethering is a viable option. I use it often and I don't find it a pain or too badly draining on my battery. I try to pick and choose when I enable it, just so I don't leave my battery high and dry.
     
  17. macrumors 68000

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2006
    #17
    tethering sucks. wastes battery, and a hassle to start tethering everytime u want to use your wifi iPad mini outside.

    my dad bought a mini wifi, it's beautiful and very very portable.

    so when the LTE version hits retail store, im going to sell my iPhone 5, buy a dumbphone instead that lasts a week in a single charge. and the mini will be for everything else.
     
  18. pooleman, Nov 15, 2012
    Last edited: Nov 15, 2012

    macrumors 68000

    pooleman

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2012
    Location:
    Eastern CT
    #18
    I'm very happy with my ipad mini wifi only. I've been thinking of getting rid of my unlimited plan so that I can tether and hotspot my iPhone 5. I know hotspotting isn't as easy as having an LTE ipad but if you have an iPhone already why do you need it on an ipad too? Can you really use an ipad as a car GPS? Is it really convenient to prop your ipad on your dashboard and drive with it?
     
  19. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2010
    #19
    Just wait for a jailbreak for the iphone 5 :) that way you can tether all you want. Make sure to use TetherMe instead of mywi
     
  20. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 25, 2007
    Location:
    California
    #20
    For some reason all tethering is crap unless its MyWi (which works great. Come on iOS 6 jailbreak!!!) and I mean all. Even on the Lumia and most android phones. If it finally starts working, it kills battery like no tomorrow. What a mess. I would definitely opt for an LTE mini, just because of the sheer convenience of it. Also, you don't need more than 16GB with LTE ... if you have iTunes Match. Food for thought.
     
  21. Moderator

    maflynn

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 3, 2009
    Location:
    Boston
    #21
    Its actually so easy to enable Settings->Personal Hotspot->Turn on. My iPad always has wifi on, so it locks into the signal and no further work.

    If you're going to do a ton of surfing or need long term network access, yeah your iPhone's battery is going to take a hit and yeah its not as convenient as a LTE enabled iPad but its not a hassle.

    I can understand the draw of the LTE enabled iPad and infact I keep kicking it around whether to buy one but tethering seems to satisfy my network needs and I don't have to spend any extra $$ to buy the LTE iPad nor may a monthly fee.
     
  22. macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2008
    #22
    What's annoying is without mywii, the personal hotspot will put the wifi asleep as soon as your ipad goes to sleep. So every time I turn my ipad back on, I have to go back to my phone and turn on PH. Mywii would keep the signal on so my ipad would automatically connect. With no one even hinting of a JB for IOS6 on iphone 5, I'm just going to return my wifi mini and get the LTE.
     
  23. macrumors 68000

    pooleman

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2012
    Location:
    Eastern CT
    #23
    Just here to confess that I flip-flopped. Just returned my 32 gig ipad mini and ordered an AT&T 16 gig model.
     
  24. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 28, 2009
    #24
    Hmmm just tried the hot spot with my mini and Iphone 5 worked pretty darn good when i really need to do it. Which may not be that often anyway. I always have my phone with me anyway.
     
  25. macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2003
    #25
    For a long time, my only source of internet was tethering my laptop through my iPhone 4. Now keep in mind I literally live across the street from a cell tower for AT&T, but it worked perfectly for me. Save yourself the $100 and use your iPhone 5 as a hotspot. With LTE, you won't notice the difference between home broadband and using your hotspot. The only issue would be running over your data plan which I did a couple of times.
     

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