How Apple SIM card works for the IPP?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by hajime, Jun 6, 2018.

  1. hajime macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    #1
    Hello, I recall somebody at the Apple Store suggested me to buy the LTE version rather than the WiFi only version. I think he mentioned something about able to buy SIM card from Apple Store in major cities around the world and I could access the internet and pay by use. How does this work? I got the WiFi only version as I could tether it with my iPhone. Haven't opened the box yet and wonder if I should actually get the LTE + WiFi version.
     
  2. Shirasaki, Jun 6, 2018
    Last edited: Jun 6, 2018

    Shirasaki macrumors 604

    Shirasaki

    Joined:
    May 16, 2015
  3. hajime thread starter macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    #3
    I am a bit confused. I don' have an Apple Watch. I only have an iPhone and an iPad 12.9" 2017 WIFI model.
     
  4. rui no onna macrumors 603

    rui no onna

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2013
    #4
    The WiFi+LTE iPad Pro has both an embedded SIM (eSIM) and a regular Nano-SIM card slot. Useful if you need cellular connectivity on the iPad frequently or if you'd like to use different carriers for better coverage. For example, I use AT&T on the iPhone and Verizon on the iPad. My old iPad Air, I put on a promotional T-Mobile 5GB/150 days for $10 prepaid data plan.

    If you want to use the built-in cellular, the iPad will need its own line of service (could be postpaid or prepaid). Signing up for a prepaid data plan on the iPad is very easy in the US. You can view and sign up for plans directly on the iPad (Settings - Cellular). Postpaid, it's usually $10-20 per month to add the iPad to an existing plan.

    If you're traveling internationally, you can sign up for data plans in select countries and carriers with the eSIM (or Apple SIM for Air 2, 5th gen and 6th gen). In case the country you're visiting isn't supported by the eSIM or Apple SIM, you can always use regular carrier-provided Nano-SIMs as fallback.

    I like them because they're convenient. Having an always on data connection is also extremely useful if you carry the iPad around with you. My dad has a WiFi-only iPad and he misplaced it in the mall one time. We were lucky we were able to get it back after an hour of searching (no internet so can't use Find My iPad). Probably would've taken all of 5 minutes if his iPad had built-in LTE. He's been banned from taking the iPad out of the house now.

    TL;DR
    Built-in LTE is a convenience. Whether it's worth $130 plus recurring data plan costs is up to you to determine.
     
  5. Shirasaki macrumors 604

    Shirasaki

    Joined:
    May 16, 2015
    #5
    I’m sorry. I just notice this is iPad forum. :(
    As of iPad, yes, for Apple SIM, you can just buy a supported plan either from Apple or from local ISP. Some cellular models have a separate SIM tray, so you can use it at countries that Apple SIM is not allowed, such as China.
     
  6. mpainesyd macrumors 6502

    mpainesyd

    Joined:
    Nov 29, 2008
    Location:
    Sydney, Australia
    #6
    The Apple SIM is most useful for overseas travel. Several years ago I bought an Apple SIM from an Apple Store in Australia. It was only $5 or so but it took a while for the Apple staff to find it out the back.
    I have used it in Europe, Japan, USA, Canada and New Zealand by subscribing to the Gigsky service. This piggybacks on local mobile phone providers. It is a little expensive but has great coverage and flexibility.
    If you don’t plan to use to use the iPad for travel you are better off getting a data SIM from your local telco. But for $5 it might be worth having an Apple SIM handy.
     
  7. rui no onna macrumors 603

    rui no onna

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2013
    #7
    Note, iPad Pros have embedded SIM that works like the Apple SIM. You can't actually activate an Apple SIM on the Pros (although you can use an already activated Apple SIM card). Devices that fully support the Apple SIM are the iPad Air 2, iPad 5th gen and iPad 6th gen.
     
  8. hajime thread starter macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jul 23, 2007
    #8
    I am in Canada but the major carriers do not seem to have a good data plan for iPad. Thus far, I just use Koodo's monthly plan (unlimited calls + 3GB) at ~ US$53.
     

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