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Difference Between Apple iPad WiFi and iPad WiFi/3G

Apple iPad WiFi vs iPad WiFi/3G

Although the iPad isn’t really the first tablet to come out, it is the one that made tablets explode onto the scene. When it was released, the iPad came in two major models; a WiFi model and a WiFi/3G model. The main difference between the WiFi model and the WiFi/3G model is the inclusion of a 3G radio in the latter.

A 3G radio is similar to what you have on phones sans call and text messaging features. The main purpose of the 3G radio is to allow the iPad WiFi/3G to establish a data connection with the cellular network that is used to connect to the Internet. This gives the WiFi/3G models a lot more freedom as you can still connect to the Internet even if you are outside or traveling. The lack of 3G connectivity in the iPad WiFi means that it can only connect when inside the coverage of a WiFi hotspot, often found at home and in business establishments like coffee shops and the like.

If you want to get the WiFi/3G model, you should be prepared for a number of consequences. The first is the increased power consumption due to the 3G radio. Prolonged use of the 3G radio will quickly drain the battery compared to just using WiFi. Another consequence is the cost of 3G connectivity. The cost of the connection depends on the plan that you have. Some telcos offer cheap plans but with a limited number of hours while others also have unlimited plans but at higher prices.

Aside from the 3G radio, the WiFi and WiFi/3G models are pretty much identical. In fact, if you turn off the 3G radio, the iPad WiFi/3G would perform just as the WiFi model will. The iPad WiFi/3G costs a lot more than the WiFi-only model. So it is more reasonable to get the iPad WiFi if you do not actually intend to use the 3G features of the more expensive model.


1.The WiFi model doesn’t have a 3G radio while the WiFi/3G model does.
2.The WiFi/3G model may drain the battery faster than the WiFi model.
3.The WiFi/3G model may incur additional charges while the WiFi model won’t.
4.The WiFi/3G model is identical to the WiFi model when 3G is turned off.

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