How locked is the iPad?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by kevink2, Feb 4, 2012.

  1. kevink2 macrumors 65816

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    Nov 2, 2008
    #1
    Can an iPad 2, for instance, be used for BOTH ATT and Verizon? For instance, if you change your mind and want to go with the other vendor.

    Unlike with the phones, which are locked to the original service (in the states).

    I am seriously considering upgrading my original iPad 3G to the as yet unannounced iPad 3. Since I currently have an unlimited data service with it I would hope I could move the SIM to the new iPad. But Verizon has LTE in my area, but ATT doesn't.

    Of course, it is only a rumor that the new iPad will have LTE support.
     
  2. markredf150 macrumors newbie

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    Sep 4, 2008
    #2
    AT&T uses GSM and Verizon is CDMA, so no you cannot swap networks. You have to buy the iPad specifically for the carrier you'd like to use.
     
  3. biohead macrumors 6502

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    West Drayton, UK
    #3
    It's unlocked when you buy it... HOWEVER, CDMA and GSM are different technologies and are not compatible with each other. If you buy the CDMA iPad 2, you can ONLY use CDMA networks (EG Verizon). If you buy the GSM iPad 2, you can use any GSM network (ATT, and pretty much any network worldwide).

    If you're hanging on for the iPad 3 though, there may be a model which combines both CDMA and GSM (Like the iPhone 4S does).
     
  4. Goodeye macrumors 6502a

    Goodeye

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    Jan 30, 2009
    #4
    No iPad currently will allow you to do that. If your looking for one and can hold off for a few weeks I suggest waiting till the iPad 3 is announced. I am not trying to start any rumors, however if Apple made an iPhone (the 4S) a global phone it wouldn't be too far fetched to see think they would do it with the new iPad when/if it's ever released.
     
  5. Stetrain macrumors 68040

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    Feb 6, 2009
    #5
    The iPad 2 comes with either GSM/HSPA (AT&T) or CDMA/EVDO (Verizon) hardware.

    The iPad 3 will most likely have one 3G model that works on both networks. This is how the iPhone 4S works.
     
  6. mrsir2009 macrumors 604

    mrsir2009

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    Melbourne, Australia
    #6
    If you get a GSM model you can use all GSM networks (all networks which use SIM cards, which is most of them). If you get a CMDA model you can only use it on that one network that you got it for. I'd get a GSM one, so you have lots of network choice :)
     
  7. GLOC macrumors member

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    Oct 23, 2009
    #7
    This is sort of linked to a question I have about buying an iPad2 in the US for use in the UK but one of the answers above changes what I thought was the case re: 3G iPad2s

    Can I buy a 3G iPad2 in the US and use it with a UK GSM network (O2, Vodafone etc) or is it locked to AT&T? I thought the latter.

    Regards
     
  8. Ivan P macrumors 68030

    Ivan P

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    #8
    iPads are all factory unlocked, so a 3G model purchased from the US can be used in the UK too.
     
  9. GLOC macrumors member

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    Oct 23, 2009
    #9
    I am now a very happy bunny... ;) I have 2 trips planned to the US in the next 6 weeks and depending on the announcement for a 3, looks like I will be getting an iPad from the US. I have an address where I can get stuff sent to too, so refurb might be an option (£460 64Gb 3G Wifi vs £600 for the same in the UK - refurb or £659 UK vs £525 US new).

    Regards
     
  10. kevink2 thread starter macrumors 65816

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    Nov 2, 2008
    #10
    I was assuming that the iPad 2 was like the iPhone 4S, with a radio built in that could do both Verizon or ATT.

    ----------

    The unlocked GSM capability of the iPad would work better for me if I spent more time out of the country. My last trip out of the country was to Canada before the iPads were even rumored.
     
  11. davenz macrumors regular

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    Jul 19, 2008
    #11
    I don't know how carriers in the US are still using CDMA. So old school
     
  12. ChristianJapan macrumors 601

    ChristianJapan

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    #12
    I got a prepaid contract with our local provider SoftBank in Japan. The iPads in Japan are sim-locked to SoftBank; no alternative allowed (Thank you Apple; very unfriendly)

    But the good thing is that the prepaid account allow to stop automatic recharging each month what I did. Instead I got a WiFi router for NTT LTE Network. So why not just a WiFi iPad ? because on business trips to Switzerland I buy prepaid sim-cards and can use iPad with local networks over here. Very nice.

    What I want to say: those mobile wifi router give you quite flexibility; you can connect also some friends or your laptop while on the road.
    So if financially possible keep the unlimitted plan with new iPad 3 and add a LTE mobile router. On a side node: check the real transfer bandwidth i your area; I'm a bit unsatisfied with the LTE promise and LTE reality.
     
  13. old-wiz macrumors G3

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    #13
    too expensive to switch to GSM for one thing.
     
  14. biohead macrumors 6502

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    #14
    I'm here with a US model iPad 2 (MC773LL/A as opposed to MC773B/A). Inserted my O2, Vodafone and 3 microsims and all work fine. The US AT&T iPads are NOT locked (unlike their carrier provided UK counterparts!).

    The ONLY thing is that they come with the US head for the charger as opposed to the UK head. If you already own some of these it's not a problem as all.
     
  15. kevink2 thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #15
    Reports here that ATT now has LTE SIMs, with speculation about the iPad 3 included, leads me to suspect that ATT may not support LTE on the existing SIMs. Such as the one I have with my iPad. If so, and I upgrade, I may be limited to 3G access even in the few areas that ATT has LTE coverage.

    If this turns out to be true, I may just signup for Verizon for my iPad. Verizon supports LTE in my area. And when in a 3G area, though it is slower than ATT's, the other downside of it about no voice/and data doesn't apply for the iPad.
     
  16. adm90 macrumors newbie

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    Feb 7, 2012
    #16
    Not to steal anyones post, but i figured i would ask a question semi related to the topic. Now this maybe a really stupid question because i doubt it will work. But i recently purchased an incredible two, its a world phone so it has a verizon sim card not just remote activation on the phone like the others have... My question is this, if i were to take the sim card out of the phone, and put it into the verizon ipad... would it let me use the internet on it... Well a better question would be is if the sim card is easily accessible in the first place? I plan on buying an iPad in about a month or so (be it the 2 or whatever else is supposed to be launching soon). Thank in advanced guys.
     
  17. kevink2 thread starter macrumors 65816

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    #17
    My understanding of world phones from Verizon are that the SIMs are only of use outside the US. Such as in Europe. So would not be of any use in the US.
     
  18. Stetrain macrumors 68040

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    Feb 6, 2009
    #18
    Except that the the iPads are generally not carrier locked.
     
  19. adm90 macrumors newbie

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    Feb 7, 2012
    #19
    I was also under the same assumption but...


    Made me curious on if this could possibly work still in the US lol.
     

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