What are you paying ATT for your iPad data??

Discussion in 'iPad' started by bushbaby, Sep 28, 2016.

  1. bushbaby macrumors 6502

    bushbaby

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Location:
    SoCal
    #1
    I've got the grandfathered unlimited plan on ATT for two iPhones. But for my very old iPad 2 and iPad 3, I've been paying $30 for each iPad for a total of $60 a month for 3gb. I've reduced usage to almost nothing and called ATT twice to lower it. The first ATT rep lowered one line to 1 gb for $10 and the other one I chose to lower to the same amount by the next billing cycle.

    Called today to see if I could choose an even lower amount of data and this rep said nothing had been changed on the older iPad at all. The pending request on the newer old iPad he said was tied into the tv promo, which I never said I'd do, so it will kick back to 256mb for $15 after a couple of months (this, after he first told me there was nothing lower than 1 gb). Hopefully, they will not add some additional charge for this.

    We hardly ever use the iPads now unless it's WiFi, so it looks like the lowest I can keep a data plan for them is $30 a month. Just wondered if anyone else was playing less. And with ATT making errors like this, can I be confident they didn't mess up my grandfathered portion of my plan?
     
  2. krs1demian macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Dec 29, 2011
    Location:
    Seattle
    #2
    Man I swear AT&T is the worst... haven't experienced this, but I wish you good luck! $60/month is so much for some old ipads that don't even use the network connectivity that often.
     
  3. dsampley macrumors regular

    dsampley

    Joined:
    Jul 2, 2007
    #3
    I am rocking the old 30 dollar unlimited iPad plan. Its great to not have to worry about overages.
     
  4. bushbaby thread starter macrumors 6502

    bushbaby

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Location:
    SoCal
    #4
    You're so fortunate!
    Was that offered when you bought the original iPad?
     
  5. Ghostbuster386 macrumors regular

    Ghostbuster386

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2014
    Location:
    Orlando, FL
    #5
    I moved my AT&T iPads to TMobile for the free 200mb. Saves me from having to pay $10 on my Mobile Share plan.
     
  6. bushbaby, Sep 28, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2016

    bushbaby thread starter macrumors 6502

    bushbaby

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Location:
    SoCal
    #6
    Is that something I could do? Aren't my iPads only good on ATT?
     
  7. Ghostbuster386 macrumors regular

    Ghostbuster386

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2014
    Location:
    Orlando, FL
    #7
    I believe the iPads are unlocked so you can just get a TMobile sim and set it up. Now your phones would work but you need to make sure they are unlocked.
     
  8. bushbaby thread starter macrumors 6502

    bushbaby

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Location:
    SoCal
    #8
    Thanks - meant to say "iPads." I corrected it above. I need to stay with ATT to keep my grandfathered unlimited data for my phones. But if I can get my iPad connection for less at T-Mobile, I'd move them over.
     
  9. jetjaguar macrumors 68030

    jetjaguar

    Joined:
    Apr 6, 2009
    Location:
    somewhere
    #9
    Same ... would NEVER give it up
     
  10. TheRealAlex macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Sep 2, 2015
    #10
    $30 Plan on Sprint old SERO member was able to add a line for my iPad Pro 9.7 32GB which only cost me $529 with Sprint. That's 529 over 24 months is $22 a month.
     
  11. ecschwarz, Sep 29, 2016
    Last edited: Sep 29, 2016

    ecschwarz macrumors 65816

    ecschwarz

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    #11
    Truth be told, by not willing to change plans, there isn't much AT&T can do for your iPads - those old plans don't have certain features and are conceptually very different (the new data-bucket-style plans let you add iPads relatively inexpensively, especially if you don't plan to use much data). There are also a lot of people that will not give up their unlimited data, but are only using a few GB/month, so the current plans may actually be a better value overall, especially if you have multiple devices. Unlike some carriers, AT&T rarely does much in terms of special promotional plans, except some retention plans. Besides that, they'll grandfather you on your current plan indefinitely, which can be good or bad (for me, it would've actually been more to move from Mobile Share Value to Mobile Share Advantage, but for a friend of mine it was a bit cheaper to move). You can always go to a corporate AT&T store and have them run the numbers—despite some popular opinions, employees there do not have any sort of incentive to force you to move.

    That being said, if you just want to keep a little cellular data on the iPad for cheap, T-Mobile is a good alternative. Since iPads are unlocked, they can work with carriers that are compatible with your hardware. In the case of the iPad 2 and 3, they're GSM, meaning you have the option of AT&T and T-Mobile. Newer models have additional radios and frequencies so they are a bit more universal (my iPad Pro works on all four carriers).

    Here's what you'll need to do (you could try it with your iPad 3 and always swap the SIM card into your iPad 2 to try that, too):

    • Go to a Best Buy, Walgreens, Walmart, etc. and buy a T-Mobile prepaid SIM card. They typically run $5-$10 and are the same ones that will work for prepaid phones and tablets. I've bought a few from Best Buy for work and a personal one from Walgreens and they come in a little kit, usually near the prepaid phones and refill cards.
    • Remove your AT&T SIM card from the iPad and pop in the T-Mobile one. They tend to be the kind that punch to different sizes, so make sure you don't make it too small (your iPads use micro SIMs, like the iPhone 4, while newer iPads use nano SIMs, like the iPhone 5 and later).
    • Once the SIM card is in, it may take a second, but the carrier should change to say T-Mobile in the upper-left corner. Once it does, you can go to Settings > Cellular Data and you should be able to tap "Manage T-Mobile Account..." (If it doesn't, you might need to turn on cellular data).
    • For best results, you can turn off Wi-Fi to force the SIM card to connect to a cell tower. From there, T-Mobile will walk you through creating a prepaid account (email address and password) and then you can choose to add data or go for the "later" option. That will give you 200MB/month for the life of the device. They're not picky about it, but it auto-renews each month and doesn't require any payment information on file. Since it's a little bit of data, I suspect the idea is for people to try out their network and also keep SIM cards active to potentially add more data later. People have even moved SIM cards to newer iPads and kept this plan, so the "for the life of the device" is a very loose definition.
    • If you find coverage/features/etc. isn't what you want, you can always pop the AT&T SIM back in the iPad and continue using it with AT&T (so if you are going to cancel those lines from your AT&T account, wait until you verify that you are happy with T-Mobile).
    At worst, you'll be out $5-$10 for the T-Mobile SIM card, but otherwise it could be an inexpensive way to keep a bit of cellular data available for those devices. Additionally, if you need more data, you can add a non-recurring "data pass" via a credit card, debit card, or prepaid card (those almost work like iTunes Gift Cards) and that will be in addition to your 200MB (so if you buy 3GB/$30, it will last a month, giving you a total of 3272MB). After that, it will go back to 200MB/month for free.

    The nice thing is that most iPads (except for the Verizon/Sprint-specific iPad 2/3/4) can work on multiple carriers without any special work as long as the carrier has a prepaid or postpaid tablet plan. This is great for world traveling (since most of the world is GSM-based) and giving some options with newer iPads. Apple put both CDMA and GSM radios in the iPad Air and newer, allowing them to connect to just about everything (LTE is GSM-based, so that's why Verizon and Sprint have started issuing SIM cards, the CDMA radio will kick in for connection to older towers). Some people have used this as a way to get the best coverage possible when traveling—they'll have a couple of active prepaid SIM cards and use the one most appropriate for that area or carry a phone from one carrier, iPad with another and use hotspot mode on each if necessary.

    Obviously, your iPads are a little before that benefit, so your choices are probably just AT&T and T-Mobile (maybe some regional carriers?), with the iPad 3 getting LTE on some frequencies.
     
  12. bushbaby thread starter macrumors 6502

    bushbaby

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Location:
    SoCal
    #12
    Ecschwarz, big thanks for taking the time to write out this detailed information! This is great news. I'm going to try it this weekend.
     
  13. ecschwarz macrumors 65816

    ecschwarz

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    #13
    Great! I have done it with a handful of iPad mini 2s and my iPad Pro and there's no reason why it wouldn't work for yours - here's the information for the promotional data: https://support.t-mobile.com/docs/DOC-9700

    The Connect Me site is sort of a captive portal when using cellular only and not having a SIM card set up for service - that's how you'll register your device (it works on iPads through Settings > Cellular Data > Manage T-Mobile Account or through your browser when Wi-Fi is turned off): https://support.t-mobile.com/docs/DOC-9851

    Good luck!
    Eric
     
  14. EDH667 macrumors 6502a

    EDH667

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2009
    Location:
    Northern California
    #14
  15. Ghostbuster386 macrumors regular

    Ghostbuster386

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2014
    Location:
    Orlando, FL
    #15
  16. ecschwarz macrumors 65816

    ecschwarz

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2010
    #16
    Typically those are only for postpaid accounts (add a line or set up new service), but it's also worth a shot going through the order process to get a subtotal. I think they ask for the device's IMEI number...
     
  17. bushbaby thread starter macrumors 6502

    bushbaby

    Joined:
    Aug 12, 2007
    Location:
    SoCal
    #17
    Thanks for this tip. Didn't see free or .99 but they had a special on the $20 one for $3.99 (total $4.35 with tax). I don't mind waiting. This board is the best, thank you all.
     
  18. Channan macrumors 68030

    Channan

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2012
    Location:
    New Orleans
    #18
    I was using my iPad Air 2 on an unlimited plan with AT&T, but when I bought an iPad mini 4, I swapped the SIM to my mini and had no use for the cellular aspect of my iPad Air 2, so I bought a T-Mobile SIM and got the free 200 MB plan on that. It's great to know I can track it still if someone ever stole it, but it's not really used for anything.
     
  19. eurogreek macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2009
    #19
    I have always wanted the unlimited data plan for my IPad. If anyone wants to sell, please let me know.
     
  20. Channan macrumors 68030

    Channan

    Joined:
    Mar 7, 2012
    Location:
    New Orleans
    #20
    I have the new unlimited plan, but it doesn't bother me because it's only an extra $10/month for me over the old plan (my parents got it so I just added a line for $40) and I've never experienced throttling even though I use well over 22GB or however much it is every month. I don't live in a heavily populated area so I guess the network is never congested here.
     
  21. rui no onna macrumors 603

    rui no onna

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2013
    #21
    On AT&T, we have 20GB for $170 total per month (service, taxes and misc fees) shared among 4 iPhones and 1 iPad. The iPad uses the bulk of the data (~50-75%) as it gets used as wifi hotspot a lot.
     
  22. kevink2 macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Nov 2, 2008
    #22
    They are unlocked, but the older iPads may have limited 3G or 4G support on T-Mobile.
     

Share This Page