What's the difference between the iPad wifi and iPad wifi + 3g?

Discussion in 'iPad 2 Forum' started by veggiop, Apr 7, 2011.

  1. veggiop
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    veggiop iPF Novice

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    Okay, so I'm planning to buy an iPad and would like to know more of the details. I know that ipad wifi + 3g would offer me with internet usage anywhere and anytime. However, is it true that the ipad wifi + 3g is faster than the normal iPad? If so, how much faster?
    Thanks.
  2. sjleworthy
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    sjleworthy Super Moderator Staff Member

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    no. it isnt. they use the same processing chips. the only spec difference between the wifi and the wifi+3g is the 3g additions, which dont add to general ipad speeds 1 little bit
  3. Tim SPRACKLEN
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    Tim SPRACKLEN iPad Legend

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    The other noticeable difference between the WiFi and 3G versions is that the 3G version has GPS too because the GPS functionality uses part of the electronics used by 3G.

    So a 3G iPad will have full satellite navigation capability too. WiFi iPads have some capability in this direction by using a database of WiFi hotspot locations, which works reasonably well in urban areas but outside the range of WiFi, these iPads cannot retrieve the iPad's location.

    Tim
  4. Breitling65
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    Breitling65 iPF Novice

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    Most likely for 3G gps triangulation. Who cares and need another gps if I have my 3G iPhone4 in pocket with same gps?
  5. Dorje
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    Dorje iPad Enthusiast

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    I thought that too, and i have degree in geography *_*;

    It actually does have access to a GPS antenna and gets real satellite position data. Although it isn't a particuraly good receiver. If you are signed up and using a 3G plan you also get an assist from that network. If not it starts pulling assistance off known Wifi positions and I think the general location of cell towers(but not the actual timing corrections).
  6. snoitan
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    snoitan iPF Novice

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    The other big difference is the price ;)

    One thing I like about the 3G version is being able to turn the subscription on and off. For my first iPad, I had it off most months and just turned it on for vacations, etc. I went with the WiFi version this time simply because they didn't have an 3G versions when I bought it day one in line at Wal-Mart because the Best Buy was out.

    But I really don't miss 3G. I find I almost never need it. Even on vacation, I can get WiFi at the hotel for free.
  7. Tinman
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    Tinman iPad Junkie

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    No, it has a genuine GPS chipset. You don't even need to be connected to any cell tower to use... nor do you need to even activate 3G to use the GPS functionality.

    As for the quality of the iPad 3G's GPS chipset... well if you like the iPhone 4's it's about the same thing in the iPad. Indeed the baseband is straight from the iPhone 3GS.

    As far as usability is concerned... the iPad's larger screen can make it very useful for some people for navigation purposes. Not just on highways either. Pilots, boaters, etc., can use it too.

    I have a wifi only iPad and many times wished it had GPS. OTOH I can get it via a $25 bluetooth receiver if I was that driven to do it. :)



    Michael
  8. Rudinater
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    Rudinater iPad Fan

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    An Ipad with 3G is be able to connect with the data provided for internet service, yes there is a fee.

    Only the 3G Ipads have a true GPS receiver build in to them. So if you ever plan to use it as a true GPS you need the 3G ver. My self and 100's of pilot friends will tell you the GPS works just fine in the Ipad 3G.

    Thanks to apple locking down of the OS you can not just go buy any blue tooth GPS receiver and expect it to work with a Ipad. There are currently 3 external GPS units that will work with an Ipad and they all cost about $100.00 each

    Other then a couple of gram's of weight different those are the only different between the wifi and 3G Ipad. Neither if faster then the other.
  9. Breitling65
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    Breitling65 iPF Novice

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    Gps is slow and not accurate in both iPhone or iPad, cheap garmin model could do job 100 times better. But anyway, iPad is too big for gps. Useless for cars without special holders that take lots of space. iPhone is Ok but again slow and not accurate.
  10. thebytedoc
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    thebytedoc iPF Novice

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    I have stuck with the wifi only versions, I use tethering with my iPhone if I need to have internet where wifi is not avail. The advantage as I see it is cheaper initial cost. Also I don't have a second data plan to contend with :). I have been happy with the tethering so far. When the iPhone finally has 4g capabilities I will gleen that benefit immediately on both my phone and iPad. GPS on my iPad is not a real issue for me. My two cents for what it is worth :)
    Last edited: Apr 7, 2011
  11. Dorje
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    Dorje iPad Enthusiast

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    How the "removed swearing" col.bris did I miss these? Especially this bluetooth based GNS 5870. For the price to have link to my iPod and iPad, or any laptop, just sounds to good to pass. If I ever get my hands on one I'll see about posting a consumer review.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 17, 2011
  12. Rudinater
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    Rudinater iPad Fan

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    The three external gps options for a wifi Ipad are:

    Bad-Elf, GNS 5870 and the XGPS 150 all run about $100.00 each and can be found on Amazon.com. I would go with either the GNS 5870 or the XGPS 150. They are external units and connect by bluetooth. The Bad-elf however plugs in to the Ipads interface port and I worry about bumping it and damaging either the ipad or the gps unit. It should also be noted that all of these are now WAAS GPS receivers.
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 17, 2011
  13. DevinB
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    DevinB iPF Novice

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    I bought the 3G version for the fact that it has GPS. I plan to mount it in my jeep and get a quality GPS app with topographic maps to use in the back country of Utah.
  14. Rudinater
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    Rudinater iPad Fan

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    Smart man . . . . this is another reason I bought the Ipad, I wanted a larger screen GPS for off roading and this fills the bill and provides other functions as well:D
  15. Tinman
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    Tinman iPad Junkie

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    Cheap Garmin 100 times better? That is kinda out there, and not at all true.

    I have compared my iPhone 4 to dedicated GPS units and it faired very well. Not to mention it was usually able to obtain a fix faster as it had the advantage of a cellular connection. Walking into, say, a huge mall the dedicated GPS simply "stopped" whereas the iPhone 4, and also the iPad 3G, will merely use cell tower data and/or wifi to keep itself located.




    Michael
  16. Tinman
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    Tinman iPad Junkie

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    If you are jailbroken you can use just about any bluetooth GPS receiver if you use the app BTStack GPS (it's $5). I can get a GPS receiver that will work with this combo for as little as $25.

    One advantage to using an external GPS unit is you can position it for to better see the sky.



    Michael
  17. dpgipad
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    dpgipad iPF Noob

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    I was told that if I have a data plan with my iphone3, I can use that data plan through my ipad? or something along those lines?

    is this possible?
  18. kctay
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    kctay iPad Fan

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    Funny, the GPS is accurate enough to give me yardages on a golf course within one yard plus or minus.
  19. Dorje
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    Dorje iPad Enthusiast

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    IPhone 3G or 3GS? I would contact your service provider as I'm not sure the 3G supports tethering (the term your looking for). Tethering was added to iOS 4.2 for at least the iPhone 4 and I think the 3GS. Again check with your provider and be very clear about the model you have.


    =====

    Oh got a GNS 5870. The power switch is a finicky as the bad Amazon reviews are saying. Okay to turn on, difficult to shut off (gets a bit easier with practice). Not good for impatient people. Other then that it worked well with my iPad and iPod. Tomorrow im going to hand it off to a kid I trust and let him run around the field with it, see how far away it can get before the connection cuts out.
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2011

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