Carrier Can someone please help me activate Air on T-Mobile?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by MaxPower49, Nov 9, 2013.

  1. MaxPower49 macrumors 6502a

    Sep 11, 2008
    Sorry to ask this here, but I think there are people here that will be more helpful than T-Mobile customer service reps. I called T-Mobile CS this morning... got hung up on the first time, called back and got transferred to SIX DIFFERENT PEOPLE. Not a single one of them knew what they were doing. One guy claimed to have me set up and that my iPad would be working in 2 hours. Got a message on my iPad later that device registration failed. Took my iPad to local T-Mobile store this evening... the guy there was even more clueless. Zero help.

    T-Mobile has the worst customer service I've dealt with. Didn't think anyone would be able to wrestle that title away form Time Warner Cable, but here we are. They were all friendly enough I guess... just completely clueless.

    Anyways, I bought a 128 gb T-Mobile iPad Air from the Apple store. I just want to get it activated for the free 200mb data. Can anyone give me instructions on how to do that? I'm afraid one of the guys on the phone might have screwed up the account somehow. I think he set up a prepaid acct and gave a phone number for it (no idea why). Help?

  2. powerbooks, Nov 9, 2013
    Last edited: Nov 9, 2013

    powerbooks macrumors regular

    Feb 23, 2009
    I don't know why this is difficult. Here is my brief summary of what I did on Wednesday:

    I got a used iPad mini Verizon version off ebay (not even a new one!). Take out the Verizon nano sim card (no use anymore because it was registered with old owner). Insert one new T-Mobile nano sim card which I bought online free or 1 cent?, (but I am sure you can get one from any T-mobile store), and open Settings, you will see the Cellular Data will recognize T-Mobile. Then click "View Account", it will prompt you to either enter your number, or register a new account. Obviously you want to register a new account, which will prompt you to turn off WiFi, and try to connect by cellular. After a while, the card in your iPad will be recognized, and you proceed with entering all your information (no credit card required), and select the plan you need: on-demand only, not sign up for anything. Once it is done, you will get two email notifications, one for new account with 200 MB free monthly data plan, and a second with your new account number and security code. That's all. Now I can use T-mobile even in a Verizon iPad mini (not real 4G thought).

    If your new iPad Air is from T-Mobile, I would imagine the same thing but more easy, assuming you have a T-Mobile sim card in the brand new shinny iPad air!

    Try it, and it is not difficult at all!
  3. MaxPower49 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Sep 11, 2008
    It's difficult because the T-Mobile reps have no idea how to do their jobs. I suspect that one of the guys I talked to on the phone today did something to this account that is preventing me from getting it set up properly.

    When I go to cellular data > view account, I can login but it says "DATA PLAN - No Current Data Pass" When I click "add or change data plan," it gives me some options to pick from, but none of them are the 200mb free plans.

    It looks like he set it up as a prepaid account... is that how it is supposed to be? Can I just click "cancel plan" and start over? Or will that completely deactivate this SIM card?
  4. doxielover macrumors 6502a


    Apr 12, 2011
    Similar thing happened to me. I had to get a new SIM card and start over. Threw the one they activated wrong in the trash.
  5. TraceyS/FL macrumors 601

    Jan 11, 2007
    North Central Florida
    I can't be a lot of help, other than to say that I had. T-mo data plan on my ipad1 until Wednesday. We dropped it because of the free offer and planning on ordering the Air.

    I then went to thei website they have set-up, the mim.tmobile one with wifi turned off, and was then able to use that same sim to set up the freebie account. I wasn't sure if it would work after having been on a paid plan, but it did.

    you should have been able to do The sign up via the settings on the iPad I would have thought.

    I wish I could be of more help!
  6. powerbooks macrumors regular

    Feb 23, 2009
    You might made some wrong move during the activation? There is really no need to call T-Mobile, everything is supposed to be pretty straight forward on your iPad.

    Try get anther new nano sim card and re-activate again. See if it will be activate in your new iPad Air.

    I will try my 200MB nano sim card (from my ipad mini) in my new iPad Air (on the way) once I receive it (on the till next Tuesday).

  7. jason2811 macrumors 6502a

    May 8, 2006
    How sufficient is 200mb? I'm on wifi most of the time. Can someone tell me what 200MB would translate to in terms of YouTube usage, or iMessage usage, or website browsing? I'm looking for some barometer to measure how far 200MB would get me.
  8. powerbooks macrumors regular

    Feb 23, 2009
    Only for some light use such as checking email, or mapping out your location which is the most i will use. Think of this: with only cellular versions have real GPS, it makes no sense if you don't have any data plan.

    (Don't think any Ytube is reasonable with the 200 MB plan, but for checking this forum, it is enough.)

    Remember to turn off push so you don't "waste" half Mb a day on the road :)

  9. jason2811 macrumors 6502a

    May 8, 2006
    Thanks for the reply. Also, with T-Mobile, what happens if you go over your 200MB cap? Does the internet just stop working?
  10. leftfieldfan macrumors newbie

    Jun 25, 2010
    I have an AT&T iPad air. I ordered a t mobile nano sim and installed it while iPad was off. I turned on iPad and turned off wifi. I went to cellular settings , view account and set up tmobile and chose 200mb starter plan, had to give address and email, it never asked for a credit card. It would not sign up with wifi on. Everything works fine now. I also can view my free account from the tmobile app. Also I do not know if it was there before or not but in the main settings screen right below the cellular listing there is a listing for carrier and it is set to automatically detect the cell carrier. I never touched that setting though. Hope that helps.
  11. bbbobbb macrumors member

    Sep 4, 2006
    Exactly same procedure me except I bought a Verizon iPad works if you follow the steps above. The nano sim I used was one of the "free" ones I ordered from the t-mobile site last week. It says on the package you can use it for your iPhone and does not mention iPads or tablets, this makes no difference.
  12. MaxPower49 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Sep 11, 2008
    Finally got it working.... ^^ this was the solution. Whatever kind of account the T-Mobile CS rep added to the SIM card over the phone made it incompatible with the 200mb free plan. Got a new SIM card and set it up pretty easily.
  13. powerbooks macrumors regular

    Feb 23, 2009
    Drop your speed to Edge?

    Seriously, I am not sure. I just had it for three days, and not even reach 10 MB yet :)

  14. MaxPower49 thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Sep 11, 2008
    No, it is supposed to be a hard 200mb cap. It will just stop working at all and give you the option to buy more data.
  15. rui no onna macrumors 603

    rui no onna

    Oct 25, 2013
    Used it for one day (mostly just browsing these forums) and I used 90MB. :rolleyes:
  16. Capt T macrumors 6502a

    Mar 20, 2010
    I signed up with mine right from the iPad. In setting-> cellular data. You have to have the cellular on in order to do it.
  17. scaredpoet macrumors 604


    Apr 6, 2007
    Yeah, I was able to get my iPad set up right away just by going into Settings -> Cellular -> Account Settings. I didn't end up talking to any reps at all, and got it working right away.
  18. EDH667 macrumors 6502a


    Nov 25, 2009
    Northern California
    Also turn Wi-Fi off or you may get a web based sign-up screen. Settings-cellular data-view account and then it should give you the option to sign-up with your Name, email and phone number.
  19. Taz Mangus macrumors 68040

    Taz Mangus

    Mar 10, 2011
    The T-Mobile data activation site is down right now. In fact for the last 3 days has been up and down. I have verified this with T-Mobile tech support. When you activate your data plan through Settings->Cellular Data->View Account, you will get an error message. Try and you will see that the site is down which is what is used when you activate your data plan from the iPad.

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