iPad GPS

qCzar

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 27, 2011
196
2
SFBA, CA
I have a GPS App on my iPhone that I use often. However, the screen is small so I rely entirely on the app speaking to me through my bluetooth headset and keep the phone in my pocket. My GPS App of preference has all the maps locally, so having a 3G connection is no issue. The App is also a universal iPhone & iPad App.

If I get the LTE version of the iPad I'd be able to use the GPS without requiring a data connection - or a SIM card - correct? While my usage for a GPS extends beyond that of navigation, it would be the primary use. I'd like geo-located photos but that's no biggie.

Anyone with an iPad 1 or 2 that can speak from experience here? I have experience with both iPads, but neither with 3G capabilities.
 

tYNS

macrumors regular
Jul 18, 2001
112
76
If I get the LTE version of the iPad I'd be able to use the GPS without requiring a data connection - or a SIM card - correct? While my usage for a GPS extends beyond that of navigation, it would be the primary use. I'd like geo-located photos but that's no biggie.

Anyone with an iPad 1 or 2 that can speak from experience here? I have experience with both iPads, but neither with 3G capabilities.
I use my iPad 2 + 3G for GPS functions all the time. I run Navigon (it includes offline map sets) and Geocaching's App (which I cache locations before heading out). I have no 3G plan, no sim card installed. So the answer is yes, the assisted GPS will work without a 3G data plan. I would not get an iPad without GPS. You really miss out on a lot of functionality without it.

The only bummer are applications that require active network connections to stream updates. As I mentioned though, Navigon caches maps on the ipad. Programs like geocaching or Motion X will allow you to pre-cache maps before you head out on the road.
 

qCzar

macrumors regular
Original poster
Feb 27, 2011
196
2
SFBA, CA
I use my iPad 2 + 3G for GPS functions all the time. I run Navigon (it includes offline map sets) and Geocaching's App (which I cache locations before heading out). I have no 3G plan, no sim card installed. So the answer is yes, the assisted GPS will work without a 3G data plan. I would not get an iPad without GPS. You really miss out on a lot of functionality without it.

The only bummer are applications that require active network connections to stream updates. As I mentioned though, Navigon caches maps on the ipad. Programs like geocaching or Motion X will allow you to pre-cache maps before you head out on the road.
I'm very happy to read that. I own Navigon as well - was both glad and disappointed when the maps for each US state became a separate download - and I love it. I noticed it was iPad optimized which is one reason why I went with the LTE version.

I appreciate your response!
 

ufgatorbait

macrumors newbie
Mar 14, 2011
22
0
Ok, need a simple answer to hopefully a simple scenario on this topic -

Scenario -

I want GPS from iPad (3rd generation).
I buy a Verizon (or AT&T) LTE model.
I do not purchase a data plan.
I try to use GPS on iPad.

Does it work?
 

deeddawg

macrumors G3
Jun 14, 2010
8,296
2,175
US
Does it work?
It did on iPad1 and iPad2. I'm speaking from personal experience with AT&T units.

I've seen nothing to suggest it won't on the new ones.

This assumes of course that all needed data (such as maps with a navigation app) is already loaded and all that is required is the GPS coordinates.
 

satchow

macrumors 6502
Jul 11, 2011
465
181
Is it confirmed that GPS is only available on the LTE iPad again this go around?
 

ufgatorbait

macrumors newbie
Mar 14, 2011
22
0
It did on iPad1 and iPad2. I'm speaking from personal experience with AT&T units.

I've seen nothing to suggest it won't on the new ones.

This assumes of course that all needed data (such as maps with a navigation app) is already loaded and all that is required is the GPS coordinates.
Can I ask another simple (and probably dumb) question?

I see the logic that if the needed software is already loaded, GPS should work. But wouldn't the iPad need connectivity (in the form of either a data plan or cell plan) to link the iPad to its location?
 

balamw

Moderator
Staff member
Aug 16, 2005
19,075
963
New England
I see the logic that if the needed software is already loaded, GPS should work. But wouldn't the iPad need connectivity (in the form of either a data plan or cell plan) to link the iPad to its location?
The GPS is only assisted by the data connection to get a faster lock. It gets its position information directly from the GPS satellites.

B
 

deeddawg

macrumors G3
Jun 14, 2010
8,296
2,175
US
The GPS is only assisted by the data connection to get a faster lock. It gets its position information directly from the GPS satellites.
Just one point of clarity - in my experience it does not seem necessary to have a data subscription. I've used GPS on both iPad1 and iPad2 with data connection turned off, and also used them outside the US with an AT&T SIM and roaming data turned off. GPS worked fine in all cases.
 

balamw

Moderator
Staff member
Aug 16, 2005
19,075
963
New England
Just one point of clarity - in my experience it does not seem necessary to have a data subscription. I've used GPS on both iPad1 and iPad2 with data connection turned off, and also used them outside the US with an AT&T SIM and roaming data turned off. GPS worked fine in all cases.
Yeah. Sorry I wasn't as clear as I could have been.

Data is not required, but it will speed up the satellite lock if/when available.

B
 

deeddawg

macrumors G3
Jun 14, 2010
8,296
2,175
US
Additional thought...

3G/4G/LTE ipad with even a minimal dataplan will be locatable via FindMyiPhone. Wifi won't until it gains internet connectivity.

Not that this alone would justify buying the LTE version or buying a data plan, but it is an added value to consider in making those decisions.