All iPads Which iPad is best for my needs?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by iKeith, Sep 22, 2015.

  1. iKeith macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #1
    My life is very simple and I like it that way. I'm not all that technologically savvy. My computer needs are very simple: General browsing, watching YouTube videos, a very rare email or two, reading the news and books, and watching videos on sites like Primewire. I don't do gaming, apps, or much of anything else at all. My cellphone is a 12 year old flip phone that still works perfectly. (A full battery charge still lasts me three weeks.)

    I have a mid-2007 iMac. I've absolutely enjoyed it but it's getting very, very slow and it's time for a new one. I'm thinking I want to go portable, since I think my life will be going in that direction soon.

    I think I've decided on either the iPad Air (Not the iPad Air 2. I've read the problems people have with them.), or the iPad Mini 4, but I don't know which is better for my needs (listed above). Most important to me are speed and long battery life.

    But, I don't understand a few things: (I'm not an idiot, I'm just not very tech smart.)

    1. Can I replace my cellphone with an iPad and have just one device for everything? (I don't want an iPhone. I don't like the internet layout or the big monthly expense.) I pay $40/mo. for internet and $40/mo. for phone. If I can combine these on one device and one bill, that would simplify my life even more. I've tried searching but couldn't find out if an iPad can be used like a cellphone and make normal phone calls (i.e., not Skype or FaceTime). This would also make the difference in my buying a WiFi Only or a WiFi + Cellular. (I just don't understand how the "cellular" works. Is it just a data plan or a cell phone, too?)

    2. While learning about this tonight, I found out about "pocket wifi" devices. These sound incredible! Recommended? If so, which one?

    3. Can I use/connect my current Wireless Apple Keyboard and Magic Mouse with an iPad Air or iPad Mini 4? (I'm just not a Notebook kind of guy.)

    4. Can you print from an iPad? I'm assuming that would require a wireless printer?

    Your advice, warnings, tips, recommendations and experience would be greatly appreciated!
     
  2. Shirtin macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2015
    #2
    1. This might be doable but I wouldn't recommend it cause it's a large device to take and answer calls. Plus it will probably stop your productivity if you receive a call.

    2. For a little more money you can get a cellular version of the iPad which will accomplish the same thing as pocket wifi. There are many different plans some month to month others long term. I have a $20 1GB plan on mine.

    3. If those devices are Bluetooth compatable then yes you can use them

    4. You need a wireless printer that will work off of iOS.

    Sounds like any iPad will do those jobs even the older iPad mini 2 and iPad 4.
     
  3. placidity44 macrumors 6502

    placidity44

    Joined:
    May 20, 2015
    #3
    I'd get a mini 4. iPad Air is great but it's running on 2 years old and you should want a little more longevity. Also the mini 4 it's super light. Keep your flip phone and get a wifi iPad. The cellular versions are for data connections and you'd pretty much have to FaceTime everybody and be paying for data for a tablet. You could get texts with iMessage but it'd be more hassle than it's worth. I'd keep my flip phone and get a wifi only mini 4 or a refurbished Air 2. You can use your bluetooth keyboard but not your magic mouse. You'll need a wireless printer to print but it's extremely easy to do. You'd essentially be paying for a data connection for your iPad and still need a phone. Wi-fi only iPad mini 4 or a refurbished Air 2 only from apple they are good as new and you get a great discount.
     
  4. iKeith thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #4
    Thanks, Shirtin and placidity44. It sounds like I'd be better off keeping my flip phone, so that issue is solved. (I thought maybe the iPad would work like a cellphone, just having to use the earbuds. No such luck.

    That also means I won't be getting the cellular version. I don't want another monthly bill.

    Is there a monthly fee for using a pocket wifi? My understanding (or lack thereof) was that you can buy it and get wifi wherever you're at.

    I was looking at the iPad Air instead of the Air 2 because I've read several posts here of people having problems with imperfect screens and bad speakers.

    I'll be heading into Apple tomorrow to check out the Mini 4. I read on this site that Target has some kind of Cartwheel promotion where I could get it there for 10% off. I also have a friend who works for Target and gets a 14% discount. Then again, I'd have to buy it in HER name.

    Should I get AppleCare?
     
  5. placidity44 macrumors 6502

    placidity44

    Joined:
    May 20, 2015
    #5
    If you're talking about pocket wifi or a hotspot you'd be paying monthly fees to use data anyway so you'd be better off getting cellular for one less thing to carry around. You could buy the cellular iPad and pay for data only when you use it so in example you buy a cellular iPad and go on a trip you can pay for 2gb of data that is month to month. I wouldn't buy an iPad from Verizon or s carrier because of 2 year contracts. I'd get a cellular mini 4 with the discount and pay for data only when you'll use it otherwise use it on wifi. Sounds like the best option. Or if you don't need Internet on the go you can still have your media, music, photos, books on the go and connect to public wifi such as McDonald's, Starbucks, etc. you have a standard 1 year warranty which you can get AppleCare anytime before the 1 year is up.
     
  6. Shirtin macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2015
    #6
    Pocket wifi is just a cellular device which has a monthly fee. If you want internet wherever you go then I suggest getting a cellular version iPad.

    AppleCare+ will be good for two years from purchase date. You get up to two accident replacements with an additional small fee for each incident.

    You can save money going for the iPad mini 2 just sayin.
     
  7. placidity44 macrumors 6502

    placidity44

    Joined:
    May 20, 2015
    #7
    A mini 2 would save 130 bucks which is a lot of money but the mini 4 is faster, thinner, and has the fingerprint sensor. I'd rather spend a little extra and be able to have my device last longer than have an older device having to get a new one sooner thereby making the money savings moot because you'd be spending more in the long run.
     
  8. Shirtin macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2015
    #8
    The thread starter is just gonna use this iPad for basic web browsing. His iPad will last him longer than me on my current iPad Air 2 128gb cellular gold. I personally would get the iPad mini 4 over the iPad mini 2 myself but I play games and use it as my main computer.
     
  9. iKeith thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #9
    Thanks again for your responses. Very helpful. I'm leaning towards the WiFi only version, since WiFi seems to be available almost everywhere. But, I'll still consider the cellular version. I'm still trying to understand the SIM card and buying data as I need it without a contract.

    I don't want to get the iPad Mini 2 mainly because it's older and the speakers aren't as good. (Since I watch a lot of video and listen to a lot of audio files.)

    To go wireless in my apartment, I'm assuming I'll need a wireless router? I used to have an Airport device, but it caused problems with my ISP, US Internet.
     
  10. placidity44 macrumors 6502

    placidity44

    Joined:
    May 20, 2015
    #10
    I agree with that but I'd take into consideration future updates being sluggish and 130 extra for the benefits will make it last longer with no worries at all. Also might like the iPad so much he decides to do other things. Maybe/maybe not. 130 is a lot but the mini 2 is 2 years old and 3 years from now it will be five and the mini 4 will have life left in it and software updates for longer.
     
  11. iKeith thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #11
    If I buy the iPad Mini 4 at Target with my friend's discount, that wouldn't void the warranty in my name, would it? Could I still go into Apple with it if I had a problem? Would I need the receipt? Would Apple care if I bought it through my friend and her card/name was on the receipt?
     
  12. iKeith thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #12
    I over-bought for my needs/skills when I bought my mid-2007 iMac, thinking that I might grow into it and expand what I do with a computer. But, I never did. Still, it's served me very well. I wouldn't even consider another device if this computer wasn't getting so slow. Other than that, it still works well. But, since my life will be taking a more portable direction, it's a good time to get the iPad mini 4 and use it as my main computer.
     
  13. Shirtin macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2015
    #13
    Very good points so touché!

    AppleCare goes by the serial number on the device so no receipt necessary. Remember even with AppleCare there is still a small fee to get your iPad replaced (accident). There is no small fee if defect in device.
     
  14. Shirtin macrumors member

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    Sep 21, 2015
    #14

    Remember AppleCare only lasts for 2 years so just keep that in mind
     
  15. placidity44 macrumors 6502

    placidity44

    Joined:
    May 20, 2015
    #15
    If you purchase AppleCare you get a code.
    You sign into your Apple ID online which is free to setup and then you go to AppleCare registration where you tie the iPad Applecare code to your product serial number. You can purchase AppleCare anytime before the 1 year standard warranty ends. It wouldn't void it because they could have bought it new with AppleCare and sold it. No worries there. Use the discount and buy iPad AppleCare within the one year and link it to your Apple ID. No worries. It's all linked via serial numbers.
     
  16. CaptMarvel macrumors 6502a

    CaptMarvel

    Joined:
    Sep 20, 2014
    Location:
    North Carolina
    #16
    With the all of the deals on iPads at Staples/Target stores right now you could get:

    iPad Air
    iPad Air 2
    iPad Mini 2
    iPad Mini 3
    iPad Mini 4

    The mini 2 would probably save you the most cash, but is a little dated.

    You could get a cellular iPad to make your calls, but then you'd be forced to make all of your calls from your iPad, so keeping your current phone might be best. Even if your iPad if wifi only there are apps that you can make calls over wifi with.

    If most portable is your mindset, anything in the mini series may be best.

    If you want productivity and doing the most while on the go the Air 2 or Mini 4 will be best. It will just come down to screen size preference.
     
  17. RickTaylor macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2013
    #17
    Choosing between the iPad mini 4 and the Air 2 can be challenging. They're very similar devices except for screen size, and for most it comes down to whether you want a larger screen or a more compact device. I use the iPad mini. It fits easily in my suit jacket pocket, goes everywhere with me, and never gets in the way, even if I have something in my other hand. On the other hand, the screen is just a bit cramped and movies are a bit small. For me the compact size of the mini more than makes up for these disadvantages, but for others the opposite is the case.

    If you do decide to go with the larger screen size, I'd suggest getting the iPad Air 2 rather than the original. Bear in mind when you see critical comments in a forum like this, this is a tough crowd. There are many people who are perfectly happy with their Air 2, and you might very well be one of them. But if not, there is an exchange period. Even if you don't need the power of the Air 2 now, the device is likely to remain up to date longer, allowing you to wait longer before upgrading.
     
  18. RickTaylor macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Nov 9, 2013
    #18
    Just to add, another reason for getting a cellular iPad is that only the cellular iPads have GPS. I get lost terribly easily, and it's wonderful being able to bring up a map on my iPad mini with position and have it give me directions to where I need to go.
     
  19. RickTaylor macrumors 6502a

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    Nov 9, 2013
    #19
  20. iKeith thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #20
    Thanks, CaptMarvel. For as infrequently as I use my phone, it wouldn't be a big deal, but I'm starting to see the inconvenience of having a larger device as a phone, too. I'm ruling out that option.

    Actually, I was considering the iPad Air, not the iPad Air 2. On this site, I've read a lot of grumbling about the Air 2; getting a perfect screen is impossible and the audio isn't very good. That's what I've been reading, which is fine because I like the portability of the Mini 4. And audio is probably a little more important than the screen since most of what I watch I watch for the information being given, not the visuals.

    I'll compare Staples deals with my friend's employee discount at Target. Thanks.
     
  21. iKeith thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #21
    Thanks heaps, RickTaylor. I like and understand your reasoning. The parts of your post I put in bold got me thinking. I'm most likely one of those who wouldn't notice small (or larger) imperfections because I'm not very technologically inclined. (I don't even own a TV. Other than my iMac, my air-conditioner is the greatest technology in my house. And indoor plumbing. I rather like that.) I'll be sure to give the Air 2 a fair shake to see if the bigger size is going to be inconvenient.

    The part of your post I put in bold underline especially caught my attention because that's also part of my personality. Obviously, since I hardly need the newest model of everything when it comes out. If I buy it, I want it to last as long as possible.
     
  22. iKeith thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #22
    My tinfoil hat is about to show. I don't like being tracked. I don't do anything wrong, go where I shouldn't, or visit unseemly sites, etc., But, I don't like the government and Big Business tracking me, collecting information and using for their own gain... especially without my permission or compensation in any way. (Or even with compensation. But they don't even do that. They steal it.)

    Part of the simplicity of my life is that I have never had any social media. I don't even register for contests, reward/loyalty cards, or anything whatsoever. As a result, I don't get catalogs, sales calls, or even much for junk mail. I know it can already be done on my iMac, but I do what I can to guard against it and at least it's a stationary device, not a roaming. And I do believe there's coming a time, very soon, when folks will be monitored very closely. As handy as the maps would be (and I agree), I don't like the tracking feature of cellular.

    Tinfoil hat put away now.
     
  23. iKeith thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2015
    #23
    Wow, thanks for taking the time to find that for me. I'll definitely look into it. But, as recommended, I probably won't do it. The reason I wanted to consider it is because I use my phone so very little.
     
  24. zhenya macrumors 603

    zhenya

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2005
    #24
    I would get either the Air 2 or the Mini 4. Try out both sizes and see which you prefer. I think the 'problems' with the Air 2 have been greatly exaggerated here. The screen is better, the reflectivity is better, TouchID is great, and the extra RAM makes the device a lot easier to use and it will remain relevant for a longer period of time. Oh, the speakers are a lot better too.
     
  25. iKeith thread starter macrumors member

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    Sep 22, 2015
    #25
    I appreciate the assurance, zhenya. When you're not a gadget person, like me, it can be daunting when you hear those who are gadget fans talk about problems and issues.
     

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