Wi-Fi or 4G?

Discussion in 'iPad' started by ELBdelorean, Jul 16, 2012.

  1. ELBdelorean macrumors member

    May 18, 2010
    Hello, all. I am getting an iPad very soon, and it has come down between either the 32GB Wi-Fi or the 16GB LTE versions. Having the LTE version would obviously allow me to use it when there is no Wi-Fi around, but I already have a T-Mobile phone that does tethering. However, the tethering from my phone is not the fastest (about 1.5 Mbps at the highest) and it kills my battery.

    If I get the Wi-Fi version, I can get extra storage space at the expense of the LTE. So I guess my question is, which one would be the best? LTE iPad owners, how often do you find yourself using the cellular data as opposed to Wi-Fi?

    Also, another question, would Apple TV be a good companion purchase with iPad?
  2. iLikeTurtles! macrumors 6502

    Jun 22, 2012
    u should also factor in 4g costs money to use.

    why dont u go 32gb wifi + LTE and dont look back
  3. charlieegan3 macrumors 68020


    Feb 16, 2012
    most shop on a budget.

    OP: Really once you answer the question: how often would you will use LTE? you will have your answer.

    I would go with the 32gb wifi but thats for me, in a different situation.
  4. dancj macrumors 6502


    Mar 15, 2012
    For me it's an easy choice. I can't imagine 16gb being big enough. I have 64gb and want more.

    I guess if I had a 4g iPad I would use the connection occasionally, but not nearly enought to justify the monthly cost of the 4g let alone the iPad itself being more expensive. On the odd occasion I want Internet and wifi isn't available then I can still tether from my iPhone.
  5. qCzar macrumors regular

    Feb 27, 2011
    SFBA, CA
    To provide an answer to this question as an example, I have had the LTE version since release and have yet to use an cellular data. A friend of mine has a 3G iPad 2 and hasn't used the data yet.

    Think of how you'll use your iPad and not where you'll use the cellular connection. If you find yourself at parks, beaches or places with out public WiFi and you do work that is dependent to the internet (i.e. stock trading, checking out source for a web site or project, etc) then the cellular iPad can be beneficial. If all you do is game, the occasional e-mail then the cellular iPad won't be a smart purchase decision in my opinion.
  6. Caliber26 macrumors 68000


    Sep 25, 2009
    Orlando, FL
    I have to agree with what others have said: if you're constantly taking your iPad to places where WiFi isn't available, having the cellular data will be very beneficial to you. However, if you're like me, and mostly use it at home, then go for the WiFi-only model. You'll find that when you're out-and-about, your smart phone will suffice your needs. And if you really need to tether, that 1.5Mbps will get you by for most tasks.

    I got the 4G version and I'm actually about to remove the cellular service since I'm basically paying $15 every month, for nothing. I'm not sure how I've "used" 5MB since I have cellular service toggled to OFF in my settings.

    Attached Files:

  7. Iwolf macrumors newbie


    Jun 24, 2012
    Gunshine state
    I went with the 16gig 4G Verizon model and love it I use cellular data a lot smoking fast compared to my iPhone 4S on sprint but I can see how more space would be nice so I guess depends how you are going to be using it yer call
  8. aa909 macrumors newbie

    Sep 11, 2008
    my recommendation is to get the wifi version with more memory, and if you know you're going to be on the road without wifi and need the iPad for web access then you can always activate tethering on your phone. For AT&T the tethering option is about the same price as activating 3G/4G access on your iPad and you can toggling monthly as needed. Plus you're likely to upgrade your phone every few years while you may hold onto the same iPad for 3-4 years, hence as the networks improve you'll always have the fastest speed with your phone
  9. barkomatic macrumors 68040

    Aug 8, 2008
    I got the 64GB with LTE and I order service about 4 times a year when I travel. My family only has a dial up connection, which is obviously useless for an iPad, and many hotels and airports do not have free wifi. Better to pay $30 a month and have 3GB to use for 30 days than pay more per day or even per hour.

    If I had to choose between a higher capacity and LTE I'd probably go with the higher capacity.
  10. ucfgrad93 macrumors P6


    Aug 17, 2007
    That is definitely the key question. For me, it would be wifi.
  11. Badrottie Suspended


    May 8, 2011
    Los Angeles
    16GB with LTE I paid 30 a month but I haven't used LTE that often when I am using my iPhone 4s.
  12. shady825 macrumors 68000


    Oct 8, 2008
    Area 51
    When I bought the original iPad when it was released I got the 16GB wifi only. Two things I would end up regretting very soon after.
    If I were you I would go for the 4G model.
    With the cellular service, sure you might not need it but one day if/when you do, it's there.
    And as far as storage goes, app sizes keep getting bigger and bigger. On my original iPad it was a pain to always think what I want and dont want on there... If you can afford it, I'd buy the biggest storage you can and 4G service for sure.
    Of course just my opinion.
  13. WhySoSerious, Jul 18, 2012
    Last edited: Jul 18, 2012

    WhySoSerious macrumors 65816


    Jun 30, 2007
    Dallas, TX
    same situation i was in. i choose the 16GB LTE.

    reasons as follows:

    - i don't load music to my iPad. for music, i stream off Slacker Radio
    - i don't load movies/tv to my iPad. for movies, i stream Netflix, ABC, NBC
    - i don't play games other than the basic words/chess/board/card games. for more robust gaming, i use the PS3
    - my iPad is in use 99% of the time vs 1% of the time with my MBP, so my iPad is essentially my lifeline. because i place such a high dependency on my iPad as my primary computing device, i want the security of knowing i can use it anywhere, anytime, any situation.

    as of right now, i have only taken up 9GB of my iPad storage and it satisfies all my computing/management/entertainment needs.
  14. Smithey1981 macrumors member

    Jun 25, 2012
    I had the same choice when I got mine in the end chose a wifi model and tether with iPhone doesn't really seem to drain the battery that much and in the uk wifi is available in most places u go. So go with the extra storage
  15. Penn Jennings macrumors 6502

    Apr 22, 2010
    Also remember, the WiFi only iPad does NOT have a GPS. It might not be a big deal for you. I use my iPad while taking multi-day hikes, so I needed the GPS.
  16. takeshi74 macrumors 601

    Feb 9, 2011
    Best is always highly subjective on any topic. It's up to you to determine what's best for you.

    It doesn't matter how much I, or anyone else, does. How much you need it is what matters. As posts above state, consider your needs/wants and you'll know which one to get. Polling others only tells you what's popular, not what's best suited to you.
  17. pilot1226 macrumors 6502a


    Mar 18, 2010
    I realize that this post is over a week old, but just on the chance that you didn't buy your iPad yet, I have this suggestion:

    I personally got the new iPad 16 GB with Wi-Fi only.

    I have Wi-Fi at home, and everyone's house and my family.

    The only place I didn't have Wi-Fi was at work. I have an iPhone 4S that I have been using in the interim.

    I went in with a group of people at work, about 10 of us, and we all split the monthly bill of $50 per month for unlimited data using clear. So for five dollars a month I get data that's considerably faster than 3G.

    The problem with this though, is obviously anytime I'm not near Wi-Fi on my iPad is generally rendered useless. However my personal situation is that any time I do need to get on the Internet I always have my iPhone with me. I can't think of the time though that I had to get on the Internet immediately with an iPad and couldn't.

    So I would check your needs. If you think that you can do something similar at your place of employment, then it might be more advantageous to you to just get the Wi-Fi model.

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