Irock619

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Sep 16, 2011
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San Francisco, CA
I was thinking about getting a data plan but I decided to get the wifi only model because I can use my phone as a hotspot. Why would anybody buy a separate data plan and pay extra for the cellular iPad model?
 

east85

macrumors 65816
Jun 24, 2010
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Convenience, people tend to pay for it. Also people who travel that don't want to constantly have their phone battery draining. Cellular sales are more of a niche for tablets, but I'm happy apple caters to it.
 
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Robster3

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Dec 13, 2012
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Convenience, people tend to pay for it. Also people who travel that don't want to constantly have their phone battery draining. Cellular sales are more of a niche for tablets, but I'm happy apple caters to it.

I only tether when i travel and am in a car or hotel or airport so have access to power. Guess if you tether walking around the streets you could be in trouble :)

The better reason to have a 4g iPad is so you have proper GPS.
But then if you have a iPhone it does if you can handle the small screen.
 
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rui no onna

Contributor
Oct 25, 2013
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Convenience, people tend to pay for it. Also people who travel that don't want to constantly have their phone battery draining. Cellular sales are more of a niche for tablets, but I'm happy apple caters to it.
This basically. Also, ability to use different carriers. Plus, I use the iPad as hotspot for my laptop and Android tablets. For some reason, the iPhone has this annoying habit of disconnecting from LTE when I receive text messages. I also need to keep the iPhone on my person so it's annoying when large file downloads get disrupted because I moved away from my desk. Using the iPad as hotspot makes for a more stable internet connection. I considered getting a dedicated LTE hotspot but back when I was looking, they were $200 with no contract and on-contract cost $20 per month for 2 years compared to just $10 for tablets. That $240 savings easily covers the price difference between the wifi and cellular iPad.
 
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Newtons Apple

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Mar 12, 2014
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I was thinking about getting a data plan but I decided to get the wifi only model because I can use my phone as a hotspot. Why would anybody buy a separate data plan and pay extra for the cellular iPad model?

You are not the first to think of this:rolleyes:

It is a matter of preference for each to decide. Many times I am on my phone while using my Air on cellular which is pretty often.
 
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617aircav

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Jul 2, 2012
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OP I tether my phone to my tablet, I hardly leave my house with it so for me it's pointless. However, there are others that take their tablets on the road. For these people tethering would be problematic for obvious reasons.
 
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maflynn

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May 3, 2009
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Why would anybody buy a separate data plan and pay extra for the cellular iPad model?
Here's some reasons in no particular order

Not every plan offers tethering for free.
Kills the phone battery.
Not easily done if you're busy doing something else or using the phone

For me 10 dollars a month increase on my cell phone bill more then pays for itself in convenience and ease of use. I also get a GPS in my iPad which is a plus as well :)


I tried the mobile hotspot with my iPhone before getting my rMini. On paper it seemed like a good idea, though in practice it was not. My battery was sucked up quickly. I usually have the phone in my pocket and so while driving if my kids wanted to use the iPad I couldn't turn it on easily without getting into an accident, etc etc.
 
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deeddawg

macrumors G4
Jun 14, 2010
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The only real feature difference you can't achieve via tethering I think is the ability to use FindMyiPhone. A wifi ipad has to connect to wifi first. Not enough to justify a cellular version by itself, but I mention it for completeness.


convenience and ease of use.

This is really what it all boils down to in the end.

Go with what works best for your usage. We're already talking about a luxury device; asking "why would anybody pay..." is kinda silly since the same question can be applied to the ipad purchase itself regardless of model.


Personally: I can afford a cellular ipad and choose to have that model simply because it's more convenient. I travel fairly often and in many cases don't have wifi available and/or it's a PITA to find/join/agree-to/watch-the-required-advert/etc. Until recently I wasn't on a phone plan where tethering was an option and even now it's not nearly as convenient as just flipping open my ipad and using it.
 
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MagicHAM

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Sep 2, 2013
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Australia
For me, having the 3G convenience, when I am not around near WIFI when I am heading to meetings, is great. Can look at the maps or emails on the way to my destinations. I pay for a 4 gig data plan that usually lasts me for a month (although this month, Ive mainly used it to video live streams!)
 
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TWO2SEVEN

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Jun 27, 2010
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Plano, TX
Not every plan offers tethering for free.
Kills the phone battery.
Not easily done if you're busy doing something else or using the phone

For me 10 dollars a month increase on my cell phone bill more then pays for itself in convenience and ease of use. I also get a GPS in my iPad which is a plus as well :)

My thoughts exactly. I am still on the ATT unlimited iPhone plan that does not offer tethering.
 
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threelions

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Nov 7, 2013
140
1
Try setting up a hot spot while on a bus with a bag on your lap, the Ipad in one hand and the the Iphone in the other. Also while Tethering has improved with IOS7 it's still unstable, if the Ipad goes to sleep sometimes you'll have to reset the phones hotspot setting just to get them to connect again.

It's fine if you are in a hotel room etc but if you are on the move then having the Ipad able to operate on it's own is far more preferable.
 
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Irock619

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Original poster
Sep 16, 2011
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San Francisco, CA
Some good reasons mentioned here. I guess I am not on the road enough to rely on a dedicated cellular plan for the iPad. I can see how tethering could have potential issues when doing actual "work" on an iPad.
 
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The Doctor11

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Dec 15, 2013
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I wouldn't get one. Hot Spots fine just use that. And for people who say its kills your battery life on your phone can get a battery pack.
 
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rui no onna

Contributor
Oct 25, 2013
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Try setting up a hot spot while on a bus with a bag on your lap, the Ipad in one hand and the the Iphone in the other. Also while Tethering has improved with IOS7 it's still unstable, if the Ipad goes to sleep sometimes you'll have to reset the phones hotspot setting just to get them to connect again.
If you leave Personal Hotspot and Bluetooth enabled on the iPhone and tether the iPad via Bluetooth, then it's easier (and uses less power to boot). You only need to do Bluetooth pairing one time and after that, you just need to go to Settings >> Bluetooth on the iPad to connect to the iPhone.
 
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TWO2SEVEN

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Jun 27, 2010
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Plano, TX
I wouldn't get one. Hot Spots fine just use that. And for people who say its kills your battery life on your phone can get a battery pack.

So use (and spend money on) three devices to do what can be done with one?

Personally I like to keep my phone as thin as possible in regard go cases so I wouldn't want an extra battery pack on my phone.

Doesn't make much sense.

I have also used my iPad for iMessage to talk to my wife when my phone dies. I wouldn't be able to tether with a dead phone.
 
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KeegM480

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Aug 13, 2013
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Tampa, FL
To not blow through the data plan on your phone, and having it when you are in the car or working somewhere without WiFi
 
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Irock619

macrumors 68000
Original poster
Sep 16, 2011
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San Francisco, CA
What if you don't have a tether plan with your carrier?
Cellular iPad for me.

So why not get one? Would it not be cheaper than paying for a dedicated iPad plan? I have a 10gb family plan for my iPhone. My wife only uses around 300mb per month. This is more than enough data for my needs and I pay around $130 a month for 2 iPhones, which includes tethering.
 
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TWO2SEVEN

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Jun 27, 2010
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Plano, TX
So why not get one? Would it not be cheaper than paying for a dedicated iPad plan? I have a 10gb family plan for my iPhone. My wife only uses around 300mb per month. This is more than enough data for my needs and I pay around $130 a month for 2 iPhones, which includes tethering.

I still have an unlimited iPhone plan that I do not want to give up. My iPad data is $10 a month. Not worth giving up my unlimited data for $10.
 
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rui no onna

Contributor
Oct 25, 2013
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So why not get one? Would it not be cheaper than paying for a dedicated iPad plan? I have a 10gb family plan for my iPhone. My wife only uses around 300mb per month. This is more than enough data for my needs and I pay around $130 a month for 2 iPhones, which includes tethering.
Not always, particularly not for individuals grandfathered in to the old plans or are using prepaid service.
 
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kupkakez

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Apr 4, 2011
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Austin, TX
When I did have AT&T and had the ability to tether I found that it drained my battery in my iPhone pretty quick. I decided this wasn't practical for when I travel as I can't have a dead phone and most airports I've been in finding a wall outlet to charge was just about impossible.

From there I decided I'd rather just pay the extra ~$130 and have the cellular for the times I need it (travelling etc).

I've contemplated just carrying around a mi-fi for trips but that's one more thing I have to stuff in the purse. :p
 
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joplinG5

macrumors member
Jan 5, 2014
57
1
Why would anybody buy a separate data plan and pay extra for the cellular iPad model?


Tethering is fine if you want to mess with it. Personally I think it's worth the extra 10 or 20 bucks a month to go with a cellular iPad if you use the iPad quite a bit... which I do. I rarely even look at my phone or use data on it anymore.
 
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