iPad Gift, To 3G or Not!

Discussion in 'iPad' started by BigRedOne, Sep 16, 2010.

  1. BigRedOne macrumors regular

    Nov 29, 2007
    I am thinking of buying my wife an iPad. She basically will be cruising the net, address book, calendar, photos and some basic games. She will be using it I will say 95% of the time at home. Is it worth paying a little more up front for the 3G capability? I have an iP4 with the unlimited data plan and a Mac, and I do not see her using the 3G option. But I keep thinking I should spend the money and buy an iPad with 3G. I am also thinking down the road if I decide to sell it. Any regrets from the folks that own an iPad with just the Wi-Fi option only?
  2. saving107 macrumors 603


    Oct 14, 2007
    San Jose, Ca
    I have a Wifi iPad that I bought on launch day, and I do not regret it. I go to enough places that offer free Wifi that I don't see the need to pay $130 more for the option to get 3G service and a monthly fee (no contract), so I'm almost always connected, and if can't get a connection, that is what my iPhone is for.
  3. eawmp1 macrumors 601


    Feb 19, 2008
    I bought the 3G version and have yet to activate the service. Wifi is available most places I use my iPad.
  4. Ciclismo macrumors 6502a


    Jun 15, 2010
    I say go for 3G. I have two key reasons why you should:

    First, you just never know. I didn't think I would need it, but got a 3G just in case (and because I like having real GPS). A month and a half done the track and I came across a really good - by New Zealand standards - PAYG deal. So nice to be able to fall back on 3G when out and about and I've used it a lot more than I thought I would.

    Secondly, it will have better resale when it comes to upgrade. I'm not sure exactly how much more, but combined with the added use you may get out of having real mobile Internet, the premium model is most likely worth it.
  5. Zcott macrumors 68020

    Oct 18, 2009
    Belfast, Ireland
    Better to have and not use than to be left needing it. Worth the premium.
  6. BigRedOne thread starter macrumors regular

    Nov 29, 2007
    Great feedback, thanks for taking the time to do so. I don't know why, I don't think she will ever use it, but I am still leaning towards a 3G @ 32 Gigs. I think resale is the big think right now, but she could if she wanted to go with a data plan, if that option were open open for her.

    Any additional feedback would be a good thing. Thanks a lot...Roel
  7. spimp31 macrumors member

    Feb 13, 2003
    I already have an iPhone so I tether to it rather than having spent more money and still relying on AT&T 3G. Then again tethering may not make sense for your wife.
  8. sushi Moderator emeritus


    Jul 19, 2002
    I would suggest asking your wife.

    Maybe get a cool gift card and inside have a coupon for each -- redeemable for one -- and then she can decide. Or take her to an Apple store and say choose.

    Some plusses for the 3G version:

    1. GPS.

    2. Internet anywhere.

    In my case, since I live in Japan and 3G is almost everywhere unlike WiFi, it really makes it convenient to have a 3G version. In the US, I might be tempted to get a WiFi version since there are so many open WiFi hotspots. Although, after a recent trip to the US, it was very handy to have instant Internet connection everywhere I went without worrying about finding an open WiFi hotspot.

    Again, suggest discussing with the spousal unit before getting the gift.
  9. reckless2k2 macrumors 6502a

    Jul 10, 2008
    I have a 32GB 3G and it's terribly convenient when you need it. I live in the US so it's not like WiFi is easily accessible when you are out and about for a quick fix on anything. I rarely take mine out of the home but when I do I don't have to worry about trying to find and then pulling into a WiFi hotspot. And tethering isn't an option because my wife doesn't have a tethering phone if she takes the iPad out and she's not too technical to figure it out even if she could tether.
  10. phenixdragon macrumors regular

    Jun 24, 2009
    I bought the 3G but I don't plan on ever user 3G. I only wanted the GPS part.

    I guess it depends where in the US you are. The various cities I have gone to, and major ones, finding an open WiFi isn't that easy and having to actually find one kind of sucks. But I just teether my 3G iPad to my phone and I am good to go.
  11. TraceyS/FL macrumors 601

    Jan 11, 2007
    North Central Florida
    Same here, don't happen across free wifi very often at all.

    I've had my 3G since launch and think that it's only been like 3-4 places it been there. Heck, I can't even get it at the library in the meeting room my kids art class is in weekly!

    I'd get 3G again for me, and wifi again for my teen :D
  12. georgee2face macrumors member

    Jun 10, 2010
    My wife and i both have had them sonce launch. I travel more than she does. 95% of all connectitvity is done by wifi. but when we've needed it the 3g has given peace of mind
    and as others say..the re-sale. we always have to consider the re-sale now
  13. El Jack macrumors newbie

    Dec 16, 2009
    I would take a 3G iPad with lower storage than an equivalently priced Wifi with higher storage...

    Of course consider your situation, need the internet whilst commuting, in others' homes & offices, at the coffee shop, at meetings, on site for work/play, at the airport, in foreign countries, etc.
  14. nixiemaiden macrumors 6502a

    Jun 21, 2010
    Do you have an iPad? If not you also have to consider that once your wife has one, you will probably want one too.

    I have a wifi iPad and I have a virgin moble mifi which for me works really well. However, in a few years when I plan on taking a vacation outside of the US, my mifi will be totally useless and I will be wishing I got a 3g iPad. My next tablet device whether it be iPad or not will definitely have 3g.
  15. phenixdragon macrumors regular

    Jun 24, 2009
    Ah yes. My wife has been talking about wanting an iPad. We would just get her a wifi one. I only have the 3G because I wanted GPS and I just teether to my phone if I don't have wifi available.
  16. melman101 macrumors 68030

    Sep 3, 2009
    I have the WiFi one. I tether to my iPhone 3GS (jailbroken) whenever I can't find a WiFi hotspot.

    However, there are times where I wish I had the 3G one.

    As for resale value, I don't think there will be a big difference from selling your 32GB 3G at $629 vs. a 64GB WiFi one at $600. I think all the units will keep their resale value high. 3G ones cost more, but that doesn't mean they will necessarily make more profit over the WiFi ones. Hope that makes sense.
  17. sushi Moderator emeritus


    Jul 19, 2002
    I find this comment most interesting. I've always heard that the US has open WiFi everywhere. I guess the bottom line is that it depends on where you are located or traveling.

    One thing that I really like about the 3G version, is that you can turn your iPad on and have instant access to the Internet. You don't need to worry about locating an available open WiFi spot. This definitely provides peace of mind while traveling. In my case I was able to remote access and fix some work computers. Very convenient and didn't disrupt our travel schedule much.
  18. phenixdragon macrumors regular

    Jun 24, 2009
    I live in Seattle and there isn't really any free wifi spots anywhere. Pretty much you have to pay for the service from someone or maybe it is included with your ISP, cell phone company, cable company, etc...I know I have access to t-mobile's wifi network since I have t-mobile and then because I have Qwest fiber I also have access to AT&T's wifi. But the reality is, I have to go to places like Starbucks and I'm not going to go there. It's just much easier to teether onto my phone. But I will saw it is nicer to have it in your device but I'm not paying AT&T for their data plan or T-mobile for just 2G. I don't think it's worth the cost when I can just teether.

    Been to a few other big cities (LA & Vegas among others) and still, not that much wifi. Travelling I can see driving to Starbucks to get a connection but again, I can just teether.
  19. Batt macrumors 65816


    Dec 17, 2007
    Syracuse, NY
    I hve the moidel you're thinking of buying. There are two reasons I went for the 3G model:
    1) GPS
    2) I can always get online if I need to.
  20. DiamondMac macrumors 68040


    Aug 11, 2006
    Washington, D.C.
    I picked the 3G and do not regret it as I use my iPad at work and other places that do not provide Wifi

    With that said, the 2gig cap is absurd and sees myself come near it monthly and I do NOT download major things, movies/books, etc....I simply check mail, download some apps, and play some games.

    No streaming, nothing
  21. bri1212 macrumors 6502

    Feb 1, 2008
    To 3G or not to 3G

    I bought the Ipad 64G with 3G. I have yet to activate the 3G.
    I live in the US, and never seem to have trouble finding free wifi.
    That being said, I bought the 3g model because I did not want to miss
    something important. If I feel I need it I will activate. I would tell you to buy the 3G, because if it turns out your wife needs it, she will not want to jailbreak her iphone to have tethering, It's too much of a pain when upgrades are necessary.
  22. ClaireL macrumors 6502a


    Apr 4, 2010
    New Jersey
    Go with the 3G for your wife! I just re-bought an iPad after not having one for awhile and went with the 3G one! I haven't even set up the 3G part yet but it gives me piece of mind that it's there if I need it. :D

  23. sushi Moderator emeritus


    Jul 19, 2002
    I think this is a key factor.

    You can't add 3G at a later date. So if there is a remote possibility that you might need 3G in the future, then suggest purchasing an iPad 3G.
  24. poloponies Suspended

    May 3, 2010
    My wife is not very tech-savvy but uses her iPad 3G all day long. If your wife doesn't work outside the home and never leaves the house then stick with WiFi. Otherwise I think it's too limiting. My wife dropped the data plan on her phone and spent the difference on her 3G plan. She works part-time but is running around constantly. We've also taken 2 long trips with it recently and she loves the convenience of having 3G available. We had a 5-hour drive to our son's college graduation (and 5 hours back) and she was able to keep herself occupied throughout.
  25. TraceyS/FL macrumors 601

    Jan 11, 2007
    North Central Florida
    It's a pain to track down a panera or starbucks when you need to check an email before you walk into the doctors office. BTDT.

    I see people posting about the free wifi at their doctors offices and such, well, i'm at Speech Therpay, Occupational Therapy, and Physical Therapy each week with nothing. Nothing at the doctors anymore either (1 had it when they opened their new office, but it's locked down now). It's just not prevalent in my life!

    And hey, i have driven 22,000 in the last 15 months doing this medical travel - and those 3-5 places covers that!

    Similar here, I chose to go with the 3G on the iPad instead of getting a new smartphone with data. I needed access, and the iPad made better sense.

    I did see another 3G one in the wild last night!! Only the 2nd sighting in my area :D

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