IPT as an internet device outside the home? Good or bad?

Discussion in 'iPod touch' started by sers, Jan 18, 2008.

  1. sers macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2006
    #1
    Ok,

    So I'm almost ready to purchase the IPT. After reading countless posts on this forum and playing with one for infinitum at the store, I've decided to get the 16GB model. I don't think I would really need the 16, but if I ever want to sell it in the future (to upgrade to a more current version), I figure this model would be more popular with the masses than the 8.

    That aside, I wanted to get some feedback with respect to the usage of the IPT as a PDA. I know, first and foremost, that it is a media player and I intend to use it as such. However, the ability to use it as a PDA is what really gets my juices flowing. Coupled with its sleek design, intuitive interface and excellent build quality, the IPT, IMHO, is the ultimate portable device. Also, the fact that I don't have to commit to a 2 or 3 year data plan with a cell phone carrier is the icing on the cake (not that I could get an iPHone here in Canada, anyway).

    My main question relates to its usability as an internet and mail device. At home, there really is no need for a wifi setup for the IPT to access as I use my iMac when I need to get on the net (although reading recipes off the net while cooking would be convenient). What about outside the home? What are others experiencing with regards to accessing wifi networks in your city? Is it cumbersome, frustrating, unusable, or do you have fairly good success in finding wifi hotspots that make the IPT usable? Here in my home town of Ottawa, there are a couple of wifi spots downtown that are accessible (not many), but I understand plans are in place to improve this. Or, do most people just use their IPTs on their wifi networks at home where, to me, this would be the last place I would need to use the IPT as an internet device.

    Your thoughts are appreciated.
     
  2. Bakkalohriat Guest

    Bakkalohriat

    Joined:
    Jan 14, 2008
    Location:
    Boston, MA
    #2
    Any problems that you're going to have are not with the Touch. Once you turn the Wifi on, though, you may be disappointed by your options. I've found that in rural environments, you can usually find a home network that's not secured. In the city, though, most businesses (and even residences) have learned to password protect their network. I think it's largely going to depend on the area you live in. Any of your friends have a Touch you can borrow?
     
  3. csky macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2008
    #3
    Some stores and cities provide free wifi access. In general, finding unsecured wifi access has been hit or miss. A lot of airports provide wifi for $8/per day. I've mostly used it at home, work or in stores that provide wifi. I thought about a wifi service like tmobile or just getting an iphone.
     
  4. sers thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2006
    #4
    Unfortunately, no one I know has an IPT.

    I'm not really too concerned about this as it would still make a great PDA and media player. And I realize it's not the IPT's fault if there are no wifi hotspots around. I guess that's just reality.
     
  5. SuperDaddy macrumors member

    Joined:
    May 21, 2007
    Location:
    Middle Earth
    #5
    The touch works great. I get on it at home all the time to check email real quick, or if there is something I want to check online real quick without having to boot up the Macbook.

    Also, the wife can do all of her crap on the MacBook, and I can still surf too. "Domestic Peacefulness" thanks to the iPod Touch.

    As far as away from home, I live in a small town and can find open networks all over the place. The range on the Touch is "decent". Wont blow you away, but it certainly doesn't suck either.
     
  6. gowanis macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    #6
    I bought the apps because they are cool to have, but honestly I won't be able to use them very much. The bottom line is that free wi-fi when you are out and about is practically non-existent. If you really need to check stocks, email, and the web frequently when you are out, you should get the iphone instead.
     
  7. sers thread starter macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jan 11, 2006
    #7
    Ha, I wish I can get the iPhone. Telecom carriers here in Canada are a greedy bunch of buggers and Apple wouldn't touch them with a 10 foot pole. Not surprised that the iPhone isn't sold here.

    Thanks for the feedback. Still going to get it, but just have to be realistic about expectations.
     
  8. gowanis macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2007
    #8
    yeah, that's about all you can do. i'm avoiding the iPhone because of AT&T, which offers terrible voice and data quality here in NJ, USA. So i'm sticking with my iPod Touch and Treo 700w (Verizon) for now. The dream of a perferct all-in-one device is getting closer, but not quite there yet.
     
  9. Ashtangi macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2006
    Location:
    Toronto, Ontario
    #9
    As someone has already said, the problem is that when you really need to look something up it's unlikely that you're near an open wireless network.

    I'd actually considered using the Touch as a full-time PDA recently - I'm in Canada also, so the iPhone wasn't really an option with our outrageous data rates. I'm currently on a 10MB plan with Rogers - using a Treo 680. Although the iPod is far far superior in terms of interface, in my opinion the Treo is a much better choice for a PDA, namely because the iPod lacks a few things:

    (a) No ability to receive audio/vibe alerts - Obviously the Touch doesn't have a speaker or vibration capability, so for me this is a deal-killer. I'm of the mindset where you "set and forget" appointments, meetings, deadlines and whatnot, so without any "attention grabbing" alerts I would be constantly looking at the screen for reminders.

    (b) No "push" e-mail support in the Mail.app - even with the anemic 10MB limit with Rogers, I can still receive all of my e-mail pushed to the Treo.

    (c) No proper to-do list application. To me this is a "must have" for any PDA, and I'm surprised Apple didn't integrate iCal functionality a bit more.

    To me those were deal-killers for using it as a dedicated PDA. But don't get me wrong, I'm in love with the device - it's an incredible media player, and I am always using it inside my condo to quickly go online, check e-mail and read some RSS feeds - but in terms of a dedicated PDA, in my opinion it's still somewhat lacking.
     
  10. mrgreen4242 macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #10
    I'm in the same situation you are, except I've got a friend/coworker who has a touch and let me spend some time with it. To give you a little info to compare my criteria with yours...

    - I've got an iPod video now which I use extensively for TV shows and movies (and music, audiobooks, and podcasts) so a big, widescreen iPod sounds fantastic.

    - I could certainly use a PDA for light to medium scheduling, short note-taking, contacts, etc. (I don't have one now, but at least once a week
    lately I've felt like it would be useful).

    - I don't have a laptop, and don't NEED one - I travel infrequently, but when I do travel I always wish I had a laptop with me. Getting an iPhone and paying for the dataplan wouldn't really make a ton of sense for me since my "remote" data needs are the sort of things that people typically would use a laptop for - checking email at a hotel, getting maps/schedules while in an airport, directions while at a restaurant/coffee shop while on vaction, etc.

    - I spend "to much time at the computer" (if you're married you'll understand) and so would have need for short, frequent web browsing without sitting down at the iMac.

    So, the touch sounded like a pretty good device for me. I borrowed one for about half an hour and was really, really impressed with it and felt like it would be adequate for precisely the above described uses.

    If I wanted to have access to me email, etc EVERYWHERE an iPhone would be an obvious choice.

    If you don't have a laptop, but think to yourself "I should get a laptop" once or twice a year, a touch is probably perfect.

    EDIT: I added the above bold because I think that sums up the touch really well... if that describes you, it's probably the right choice.
     
  11. quicklook2 macrumors 6502

    quicklook2

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2007
    Location:
    lakewood, ohio
    #11
    a touch is not a replacement for a laptop.

    you can go to any public library in the u.s. and use the internet there.

    with or without a laptop, or touch or anything else
     
  12. mrgreen4242 macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #12
    So people only want to use laptops when they are in libraries now?

    As I mentioned in my last post, once or twice a year I think "I need to buy a laptop". I only need it that once or twice a year though, and it's almost always at a hotel or airport or on vacation at/near a restaurant/coffee shop with WiFi to check my email, send an email, find the hours for a tourist attraction, get driving directions somewhere, etc.

    I can't think of one time I have ever been anywhere near a library, or with a way to find/get to one, that I thought "man, I need a laptop right now!"

    That just seems like a really silly argument against the touch... kind of like saying "who needs a cell phone when there's pay phones everywhere".
     
  13. quicklook2 macrumors 6502

    quicklook2

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2007
    Location:
    lakewood, ohio
    #13
    you say you only need it once or twice a year and i suggest using a libraries internet and you get all pissy at me.

    i have, a laptop and a touch and wifi in many places i visit, so good day to you, sir!
     
  14. mrgreen4242 macrumors 601

    mrgreen4242

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2004
    #14
    I'm not getting pissy, I'm pointing out that if you are a person who says to themselves "I need a laptop" a couple times a year, it's almost always all about location location location. You need a laptop because there's no other quick way to do whatever it is you're in need of, so a library isn't really a great solution.

    So good day to you! I said good day! <said in a Fez accent> :p
     
  15. quicklook2 macrumors 6502

    quicklook2

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2007
    Location:
    lakewood, ohio

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