It is wise to buy an iPad in another country?

applefan289

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Aug 20, 2010
1,705
8
USA
If I am planning to buy an iPad, and am traveling on vacation soon to another country that has an Apple store, I would prefer to buy it there because it will be funner. Would this be a good idea though?

The reason I am asking is because I wasn't sure if the products were "localized" to their respective countries. Meaning, are the settings and language changed for that country upon buying the item? If they are, will I have any trouble changing them to my language or my settings?

It's really just a question as to how the products are localized in their respective countries' Apple stores.
 

thewitt

macrumors 68020
Sep 13, 2011
2,102
1,522
The power supply plugs are localized, but other than that the devices are identical.

-t
 

wrinkster22

macrumors 68030
Jun 11, 2011
2,623
6
Toronto
well if you are in an english speaking area you should be fine. Or if you know how to navigate the OS you could change the language, Or you could have someone set up your iPad for you with the correct language. In terms of warranty you are fine. Also remember you ideally need a computer or laptop to transfer data.
Also the power adapters may me different.
 

palpatine

macrumors 68040
May 3, 2011
3,130
45
If I am planning to buy an iPad, and am traveling on vacation soon to another country that has an Apple store, I would prefer to buy it there because it will be funner. Would this be a good idea though?

The reason I am asking is because I wasn't sure if the products were "localized" to their respective countries. Meaning, are the settings and language changed for that country upon buying the item? If they are, will I have any trouble changing them to my language or my settings?

It's really just a question as to how the products are localized in their respective countries' Apple stores.
i bought my first ipad in japan. i believe it may have started up with the japanese language keyboard and stuff. i don't emember, though. at any rate, the ipad is identical to one sold in the us. all you do is change the settings to english. truly a brilliant internaionalization of a product.

power supply plug is identical to the us model if you buy in japan.

in contrast, the "international" kindle can only be bought through the us site and only has english keyoard and input capability. apple made the flawless internationalization of the product look simple, but i bet it wasn't.
 

applefan289

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Aug 20, 2010
1,705
8
USA
I'm guessing 3G items have to be different. And if you bought it from Japan, if there's an area to type your address (don't know if there is), would it be localized to a Japanese-style address?
 

thewitt

macrumors 68020
Sep 13, 2011
2,102
1,522
NO NO NO

There is NO difference in the hardware for the GSM iPads in ANY other country other than the plug on the power supply, and it's an adapter.

They are all identical.

I have purchased from a dozen different countries.

-t
 

wordoflife

macrumors 604
Jul 6, 2009
7,563
34
I'm guessing 3G items have to be different. And if you bought it from Japan, if there's an area to type your address (don't know if there is), would it be localized to a Japanese-style address?
You can change the localization settings on the iPad to US/English.


I think everything would be the same beside the Wallplug and the logos on the back of the device (it wouldn't have an FCC logo, for example, etc, etc).

Buying it another country would probably be fun ... but eh, idk. It's probably much cheaper in the US and you won't have to end up paying for a US wallplug when go back home. *But*, you would have the rights of owning iPad 2 box/packing materials in Japanese, and I think that would be worth every penny, haha.
 

palpatine

macrumors 68040
May 3, 2011
3,130
45
I'm guessing 3G items have to be different. And if you bought it from Japan, if there's an area to type your address (don't know if there is), would it be localized to a Japanese-style address?
i bought a wifi model in japan. just change the language settings to english and you are fine. one cool thing is that softbank gives you a couple years of access to fon hotspots around the country for free. i found this quite handy on more than one occasion.

i did not buy a 3G one, because as i understood it, i would have had to enter into an expensive contract with softbank.

i see NO benefit to buying an ipad in japan if you don't intend to use it there, because you will take a beating with the exchange rate. if you are getting paid in yen, bring your yen to the us and buy cheaply. if you are getting paid in dollars, spend your money in the us where it will go much further.
 

wordoflife

macrumors 604
Jul 6, 2009
7,563
34
i bought a wifi model in japan. just change the language settings to english and you are fine. one cool thing is that softbank gives you a couple years of access to fon hotspots around the country for free. i found this quite handy on more than one occasion.

i did not buy a 3G one, because as i understood it, i would have had to enter into an expensive contract with softbank.

i see NO benefit to buying an ipad in japan if you don't intend to use it there, because you will take a beating with the exchange rate. if you are getting paid in yen, bring your yen to the us and buy cheaply. if you are getting paid in dollars, spend your money in the us where it will go much further.
Does your iPad have the FCC logos on the back? (are they different?)
and is the box in Japanese :confused:

Thanks
 

Jmouse

macrumors 6502
Mar 14, 2011
336
0
Where about are yo heading for your vocation?

As far as i know they are all coming from the same factory, regardless of where they are being sent to.

you should be fine. Have fun on your vocation.
 

donnaw

macrumors 65816
Apr 19, 2011
1,134
6
Austin TX
Everyone is talking about Japan. Is that where you are going? Beware that in some mid-east countries you will not and cannot get the FaceTime app.
 

palpatine

macrumors 68040
May 3, 2011
3,130
45
Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPod; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_5 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8L1 Safari/6533.18.5)

i don't remember. i am sure i have a photograph somewhere (i sold it). the box was english, i think, but directions were not. at any rate, the differences were cosmetic.
 

wordoflife

macrumors 604
Jul 6, 2009
7,563
34
Everyone is talking about Japan. Is that where you are going? Beware that in some mid-east countries you will not and cannot get the FaceTime app.
We're only mentioning Japan because that's what the OP used as an example.

Wirelessly posted (Mozilla/5.0 (iPod; U; CPU iPhone OS 4_3_5 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/533.17.9 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/5.0.2 Mobile/8L1 Safari/6533.18.5)

i don't remember. i am sure i have a photograph somewhere (i sold it). the box was english, i think, but directions were not. at any rate, the differences were cosmetic.
Oh alright, thanks. It doesn't really matter. Probably not worth the hassle for the same exact thing.
 

palpatine

macrumors 68040
May 3, 2011
3,130
45
We're only mentioning Japan because that's what the OP used as an example.
op didn't say destination. i just mentioned where i had bought it. in short, buying overseas (assuming outlets are the same) is not any different than buying in home country, and i would only do it to get a deal.


Oh alright, thanks. It doesn't really matter. Probably not worth the hassle for the same exact thing.
i'll post if i come across my pictures.
 

ghellquist

macrumors regular
Aug 21, 2011
146
5
Stockholm Sweden
Do check oll rules

Buying things abroad might trigger various toll rules. Just a heads-up here so you do not get bitten by one.

Officially, when I travel from my home country to the USA and buy things I should pay both toll and VAT on the amount.

There are exceptions, one of them that I am allowed to bring back purchases at a total value of 4300 Swedish Krona when entering Sweden on commercial airlines or boats (less otherwise). 4300 SEK is about USD 630 so one iPad should not be an issue.

The large cost for me would be the VAT part, 25% added cost. Toll is generally only a few % although some items, especially alcoholic beverages and tobacco have much higher taxation.

But as they say, rules are there to be broken.

// Gunnar
 

palpatine

macrumors 68040
May 3, 2011
3,130
45
Buying things abroad might trigger various toll rules. Just a heads-up here so you do not get bitten by one.

Officially, when I travel from my home country to the USA and buy things I should pay both toll and VAT on the amount.

There are exceptions, one of them that I am allowed to bring back purchases at a total value of 4300 Swedish Krona when entering Sweden on commercial airlines or boats (less otherwise). 4300 SEK is about USD 630 so one iPad should not be an issue.

The large cost for me would be the VAT part, 25% added cost. Toll is generally only a few % although some items, especially alcoholic beverages and tobacco have much higher taxation.

But as they say, rules are there to be broken.

// Gunnar
From foreign country to US is no problem. I don't know where OP is leaving from or going to, though. The VAT tax? Good point, but as long as the OP doesn't try to carry it through sealed in the box, that should be no problem :)
 
french ipad with 3g/wifi works fine in usa

i picked up a 64gb 3g/wifi ipad1 in paris just as they were released. i vaguely recall it firing up in french, and that i reset it to english straight away. its been in the usa since then, on an at&t recurring plan, with no problems.
 

Aaronthebagga

macrumors newbie
Nov 14, 2015
1
0
NO NO NO

There is NO difference in the hardware for the GSM iPads in ANY other country other than the plug on the power supply, and it's an adapter.

They are all identical.

I have purchased from a dozen different countries.

-t
So I'm from England and want to buy from US. I already have a English charger for the iPad so does that mean I won't be able to use the English one if I buy from America
 

srminton

macrumors regular
Sep 5, 2008
113
134
So I'm from England and want to buy from US. I already have a English charger for the iPad so does that mean I won't be able to use the English one if I buy from America
no, it means the opposite - you will be able to use your English charger with the iPad you buy in the US (or any other country). It's the exact same iPad you would purchase in England, except for the charger.

With a laptop, you would also have a different keyboard layout (no £ sign, for example), but with the iPad all international settings are 'soft' and can be changed in Settings - so just set it up as a UK British iPad and you're all set.
 
Register on MacRumors! This sidebar will go away, and you'll see fewer ads.