iPad - Verizon, Sprint, Tmobile

Discussion in 'iPad' started by Nash Bridges, Apr 11, 2010.

  1. Nash Bridges macrumors regular

    Nash Bridges

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    Apr 2, 2010
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    San Francisco
    #1
    Is there anyway for the iPad to work on another carriers network without having to change the SIM card or are we locked into AT&T or nothing?
     
  2. andyblila macrumors 65816

    andyblila

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2008
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    On My iPhone, or my iPad?
    #2
    Verizon and Sprint are CDMA so they will not work with the iPad which is GSM. TMobile is on a different frequency and does not support mini SIM cards, so you are stuck with AT&T for now. Good news is the iPad is not locked so if another GSM carrier supports mini SIM cards....then you'll be able to put your device on it's network.
     
  3. bbtrinet macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 27, 2008
    #3
    Cell phone networks work through radios. AT&T uses a different radio for 3G than Verizon does. To simplify things, think AM vs FM radio.

    The iPad 3G only has a built-in radio that works with AT&T type radios (lets call this AM radio). Verizon uses a different radio (lets call this FM).

    In theory, the iPad 3G can listen/talk to other 'AM' radios. The only other 'AM' radio in the United States is T-Mobile.

    It's too costly (and might take too much space inside the iPad) to include both types of radios, so only one is included.

    A 'sim card' is simply a little chip that lets you communicate with the network. It tells AT&T or Verizon what phone number you have, and whether you're allowed or not to talk to them. For example, since both AT&T and T-Mobile communicate with the same radio, in theory a T-Mobile cell phone could talk to an AT&T Cell Tower. And they do, and this is called 'roaming'.
     
  4. Hmac macrumors 68020

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    Midwest USA
    #4
    The iPad's 3G modem supports UMTS/HSDPA (850, 1900, 2100 MHz) and GSM/EDGE (850, 900,1800, 1900 MHz). T-Mobile's 3G runs on 1700 Mhz, so even if you could get a micro-SIM for T-Mobile, or cut down a regular SIM, the best an iPad would do on T-Mobile is their EDGE service, which would be painfully slow.

    Gizmodo mentioned this:

     
  5. r0k macrumors 68040

    r0k

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    Mar 3, 2008
    Location:
    Detroit
    #5
    But wait, there's more! The iPad sim card is smaller than a standard sim card so you can't jam a tmo sim card in your Att 3G iPad.
     
  6. Hmac macrumors 68020

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    Midwest USA
    #6
    There is some talk of cutting down a regular SIM card, although the lack of 3G iPads has sort of impaired any broad-based testing of the concept...Even so, the ETSI (European Testing Standards Institute) has stated that the Micro-SIM is electronically identical to the standard SIM.
     

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  7. frank.deale macrumors regular

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    Jan 23, 2010
    #7
    If you get a Verizon Palm Pre phone with the (now) free mobile hot spot you can use iPad wi-fi and the Verizon network.
     
  8. iLiveUdie macrumors regular

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    Feb 19, 2010
    #8
    There will more than likely be an unlocking someday
     
  9. Hmac macrumors 68020

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    Midwest USA
    #9
    The iPad isn't locked.
     
  10. brendu macrumors 68020

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    Apr 23, 2009
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    USA
    #10
    and the palm pre is sweet.... (coming from an apple enthusiast)

    Im still on the fence on whether I should buy the wifiPad or the 3GiPad, or wait for v2...
     
  11. iLiveUdie macrumors regular

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    Feb 19, 2010
    #11
    Ohhhhhhhhhh....big problem
     
  12. Hmac macrumors 68020

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    Midwest USA
    #12
    Not if you have a pair of scissors.
     
  13. hamlinspahn macrumors regular

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    Apr 9, 2010
    Location:
    Oklahoma City
    #13
    Locked?

    Locked is harsh word, it isn't locked, just near impossible to find a provider that uses the same technology as AT&T, and the preloaded service activation software might get in the way, but really it isn't locked.
     
  14. iLiveUdie macrumors regular

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    Feb 19, 2010
    #14
    Ahhhh simple solution
     
  15. robanga macrumors 68000

    robanga

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    Aug 25, 2007
    Location:
    Oregon
    #15
    Mifi like products are perfect for the Wifi iPad. Carrier problem solved. You could probably find a case that would allow you to put both into as well.
     
  16. pvmacguy macrumors 65816

    pvmacguy

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    Sep 2, 2009
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    Jax
    #16
    Usuing my work palm pre with mobile hotspot with my iPad and it works great!
     
  17. Dr Kevorkian94 macrumors 68020

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    Jun 9, 2009
    Location:
    SI, NY
    #17
    This guy got answeres up the wasoo like everone said u can use it with any carrier that has a micro sim as for AT&T apple just workek out a price for the iPad service u don't have to go with them tho. But for say verizon they don't use sim cards they network is cmda but if u want u could get there portable wifi hotspot and use it u would have to bring that with u along with ur iPad but do what u want
     
  18. bunger macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2007
    #18
    Buy the MiFi 2200 from Verizon and then you are good go. Of course, this is more expensive than buying the 3G iPad in the long run... but it is an option...
     
  19. zub3qin macrumors 65816

    zub3qin

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #19
    How does one get their hands on an extra SIM card from AT&T if cutting the card works?

    Do I just ask for one? Is it free? If your iPhone is running one card, are you supposed to pop it out, cut it, and pop it in the iPad? Then do you just put a new SIM in iPhone? How does AT&T think you are only using one device?
     
  20. Hmac macrumors 68020

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    #20
    No clue. AFAIK, there aren't any micro-SIMS deployed in the US yet. The iPad will be the first. I don't think anyone's tested it. The theory has been that you could take a SIM from T-Mobile, cut it down and it should work in the iPad insofar as it will allow the iPad to work with your data plan from T-Mobile (on EDGE only, I guess since the iPad doesn't have T-Mobile's 3G frequency). I'm not sure how that's a good deal since T-Mobile's unlimited data plan is $50 while AT&T's is $30 and allows 3G.

    Maybe you could buy a second AT&T SIM as part of their Family Plan, or maybe you have one on a phone you're not using (you'd still have to modify the SIM card). Problem with that is that Family Plan data packages are still $30 PLUS a two year contract.

    No matter how you slice it, looks like they have you snookered. The AT&T iPad data plan is going to be your best deal. If you don't have AT&T coverage, looks like your next best bet is a pair of scissors and EDGE from T-Mobile. Everyone was pleased that the iPad was supposedly "unlocked", but from a practical standpoint, given its radio frequencies and the micro-SIM, the iPad 3G is functionally locked to AT&T.
     
  21. zub3qin macrumors 65816

    zub3qin

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2007
    #21
    The real solution will be an adaptor- someone will make a SIM card sized adaptor that you can put your "cut" mini-SIM into.

    Then you take your iPhone AT&T SIM, cut it, and then pop it into iPad as needed. When done, put it in the SIM card sized adaptor, and back into the iPhone.....
     
  22. Hmac macrumors 68020

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    May 30, 2007
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    Midwest USA
    #22
    Seems simple enough. the iPad will still cost you $130 more, but you could save $30/month. If you already have an iPhone, would this work better than just tethering a wifi iPad to the iPhone?

    How is the iPad going to look at an iPhone SIM? I assume they're programmed differently since one is data only and the other is voice+data, so, will it work?
     
  23. goobot macrumors 603

    goobot

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2009
    Location:
    long island NY
    #23
    this post has nothing but mistakes in it. first off the reason Verizon and sprint cant use the ipad is cause they dont have sim cards. and you said in your post they do which is incorrect.

    second the fm am thing would apply to t-moble and att which is why you only get edge when using t-moble in a iphone or ipad.

    tho currently t-moble dont even have sim cards that fit in the ipad.
     
  24. techn0lady macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2010
    #24
    Unlike your grammar (sigh)....
    No you are wrong and the original poster is spot on with his AM/FM radio analogy. T-mobile uses a different frequency for it's 3G so even if you cut down one of their SIM cards you will not be able to get their 3G service.

    Verizon and Sprint use a totally different form of 3G so you can never use one of their services with a a GSM data service like the iPhone.

    You, young man, are completely wrong.
     

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