Military iPad Users

Discussion in 'iPad General Discussions' started by Prasius, Jul 26, 2010.

  1. Prasius
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    Prasius iPad Enthusiast

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    I thought I'd start a thread with the intention of getting information useful to members of the international military community regarding the use of their ipads when travelling & deployed. This is mainly because we tend to put our equipment, unintentionally, though some pretty rough treatment. Personally speaking, I've been in the British Army for 12 years with multiple tours of crap places ;) - I think I've been through about 8 laptops in that time!

    So I'm hoping to encourage some hellos, any remarks about accessories (if a case actually coped with being thrown out of a CH47 by an overzealous crew member for example!), apps that have proven really useful - professionally or for entertainment, any problems you've had using the iPad abroad (power adaptors immediately spring to mind as a potential problem), any issues with personal kit insurance, etc.

    I'll wait and see how much activity this thread gets!
  2. didisinned
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    didisinned iPF Novice

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  3. col.bris
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    col.bris Administrator Staff Member

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    Welcome on board i totally agree I have sticky the thread as I feel it is important area

    Thanks for being here. Regards col.
  4. Prasius
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    Prasius iPad Enthusiast

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    Thanks for stickying the thread!

    I'm not going anywhere again until next year, but I do plan on buying an otterbox closer to the time - mainly due to it being dust proof; as the stuff will kill anything! It seems a shame that Otterbox don't appear to have much in the way of international stockists, meaning I'll need to order direct from the US website.

    The only other alternative I can see at the moment is the trusty Pelicase, but obviously that offers no protection while the iPad is in use and even the small ones are quite bulky and can be a pain to carry with everything else.

    Hopefully those who travel to less developed parts of the world will end up finding some of the stuff in here useful as well.
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2010
  5. Kevrut
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    Kevrut iPF Noob

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    Aor

    I live in the AOR and travel between Kuwait, Iraq, and Afghanistan. I spend most of my time in Afghanistan.

    The apple international adapter kit for the power supplies is great. It has every plug you'll ever need for traveling.

    There are several DOD Acronym applications that are useful for quickly looking up a new acronym (the military loves their acronyms).

    There are several good news apps that help stay on top of what's happening in CONUS. Thompson Reuters, and the new abc news app are great. A RSS reader like Early Edition helps stay on top of your RSS feeds, again saving time browsing the web when connection speeds are slow.

    Zinio is great for magazine subscriptions.

    The Kindle and iBook application are great for passing spare time. I also use the iBook application to store and read PDF files sent to me by e-mail. It's great for watching movies or TV shows, but you'll need a PC to sync them over to it, you'll not have much luck downloading movies and TV shows at most locations in Iraq or Afghanistan due to network speeds.

    Handbrake for the Mac is a great tool for converting inexpensive locally purchase movies and TV Shows to a format that can be synced with your iPad.

    In Afghanistan, you can use Roshan for data. First purchase a Roshan sim card and a $55 recharge card. Write down the phone number! Put the Roshan card in a cell phone, add the minutes from the recharge card, and send a text message to 167 with the body "GPRS on". You may or may not get a reply (should be OK either way). I'd send it a couple times to be sure. Take the sim out of the cell phone and cut it down using your AT&T micro sim that came with the iPad as a format. Put it in your iPad. Go to "Settings", then select "Cellular Data" from the left. Make sure Cellular Data and Roaming are turned on. Select "APN Settings". Your APN is "internet". Leave the user name and password blank. That's it. It is very slow, but will allow for e-mail and basic web browsing or chat with family (I use IM+ for chat and am very happy with it). I'd use your computer or wifi to download anything large like apps, movies, music, etc to save money. To recharge, just go to your phone store on base, and instead of buying recharge cards, ask them to transfer minutes from their phone to yours using the number of your sim card. I've used Roshan at Bagram and Kabul with no issues and it works most of the time in Kandahar.

    In Kuwait, I've used both Zain and Viva successfully with the iPad. Both now sell micro sims. Wataniya has micro sims and should work, but I havent tried them. Both Watania and Zain offer pre-paid (no contract) and post paid data plans.

    I use the standard apple case. A lot of people don't like it. It isn't pretty, but it is brilliant in its simplicity and keeps everything protected and still nice and slim. I'm planning to get an Otterbox case for those times when I travel to harsher locations or fly MILAIR and/or convoy.
  6. Prasius
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    Prasius iPad Enthusiast

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    Thanks for that :)

    Worth noting for any Brits here is that I have no idea what the score would be using roshan in your iPad, keeping in mind the our ban on mobile (cell) phones in operational theaters. That said, the Brits have wifi in most locations now, and the locations where it isn't, well you're probably too busy with other things!

    I would advise anyone (including US) deploying to southern Afghanistan to ensure they have a UK style 3 pin plug, as I know Kandahar was predominantly UK 3 pin, as is most of Bastion. Not sure about Leatherneck, but I'm sure anyone going to that location can find out what sockets are in use via other means.

    I also have the standard Apple case and think it will suit most normal use, but I know it wouldn't survive for long in my berghan or patrol sack.
  7. Kevrut
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    Kevrut iPF Noob

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    The type of adapter depends on what base you are on. Most US bases in Kabul use the german style (two round pins) and are 220 VAC. Bagram is mostly US style plugs and 110 VAC. The most common plug overall in the AOR is the UK 3 pin at 220VAC. Bottom line, I always bring all three.

    Nice point on the cellular ban. It exists depending on where you are and who you are with.
  8. mansontheman
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    mansontheman iPF Noob

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    Agreed that the Ottbox cases are the best for defense.
    They are made with two or three layers of plastic and rubber...
  9. henry2
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    henry2 iPad Junkie

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    i ask my kids what they use and post them here on the forum..
  10. HK_USP_45
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    HK_USP_45 iPF Novice

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  11. Prasius
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    Prasius iPad Enthusiast

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  12. KronicKaos
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    KronicKaos iPad Fan

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    US Army checking in here. I mostly use mine for FM's, AR's, TC's and other reference materials as most of our documents are in PDF format. About to take mine to the field next week, when I get back next month, I'll report how she holds up. :D
  13. Matth3w
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    Matth3w iPad Ninja

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    Army SFC, almost 10 years and counting.
  14. TillysWilly
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    TillysWilly iPF Novice

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    US Air Force for 6yrs......just got back from Turkey and I got the apple charger pack as well highly recommended for sure bc we also had a stop in England......worked gr8 for me over I love the wifi so u can use it anywhere u go A+++
  15. SweetPoison
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    SweetPoison iPad Legend

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    I love your signature! Very nice! Will you make me one? LOL!


    Great thread, btw!;)
  16. Pcolageorge
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    Pcolageorge iPF Noob

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    US Navy contractor, road-testing the iPad for use in language and culture training. Using video, PDF's (via iBook) and the music player for audio. Apps like Transparent Languages free Haitian Creole and Urdu flashcard program (BYKI) and their government-only CL-150 matrix Rapid Rote program, which is also a flashcard program. I'm converting the Navy's culture training audio powerpoints into m4v format... this obviously can take a while since the briefs run 45-60 minutes.
  17. bookoffers
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    bookoffers iPF Novice

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    Really interesting topic.
    I always have same problem of you though I'm not a military but that was always my problem when I'm rush I accidentally dropped my belonging especially gadgets. And I hate to see a a little damage on it. I'm tired of repairing I want something that make my gadgets in safe mode when i accidentally dropped it again.
  18. Warhorse
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    Warhorse iPF Noob

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    Thanks for a great thread. I don't have any practical experience as I just got the iPad, but will be monitoring closely as I'll be wheels up for the next all expenses paid vacation to the " beach with no water" in the next 18 months.
  19. Hlguth
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    Hlguth iPF Noob

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    CAC card enabled IPad

    Has anyone heard of this being accomplished?

    Have checked the DISA website but found nothing on it.
  20. Superbike81
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    Superbike81 iPad Addict

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    At a minimum the iPad would have to be jailbroken and someone would have to write an app to interface a USB CAC reader with the iPad.

    I'd say it's very unlikely that you'll actually see that happen.

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