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4 Things To Know About iPad Data Charges

The Apple iPad goes on sale tomorrow and here is the low-down on the iPad Data charges based on information that we've compiled over the last few weeks. There is no universal data plan unfortunately but you should be able to pick your ideal data nonetheless.

1. The first thing to know is whether you actually need to have a 3G model or if you can live without one. Not only will that save you some money but the WiFi-only version has a higher battery life and is lightly lighter. Unlike the iPhone, you will only need to have access to 3G where you won't have WiFi connectivity.

2. This means for example that you're better off buying a "The Cloud" unlimited account if you will spend your browsing time near cafes or near one of their hotspots. At £6.99 per month, it is cheaper than any current iPad tariffs on the market and is unlimited. We're not sure whether the Cloud will offer an iPad version, after all, the iPod Touch edition only costs £3.99.

3. If you've decided to go ahead with a 3G iPad, then why not resort to the meat cleaver trick as illustrated here. Get yourself a data SIM card and downsize it although we'd suggest that you try it out on non working SIM first. Should you go down this route, you are likely to have access to a greater range of offers.

4. 3 UK has the best value package currently on the market at £15 for 10GB worth of data with no minimum contract (and it is a microSIM). If you're a lightweight data sipper, then Orange has a £5 hidden data plan and if you want unlimited WiFi, then O2 could well be your best bet. Otherwise, have a look at our ultimate UK Apple iPad 3G data plan where we compare 6 networks and 39 plans.

We will be covering the launch of the iPad live from their Regent Street Store from 7am and you're invited to join us. You can already bookmark our video landing page here (opens in new tab) where you will find the livestream.

ITProPortal also launched a contest inviting prospective and current iPad owners to get up to £500 worth of iPad accessories (including iPad Apps and Apple iTunes Credit) simply by submitting the list of accessories they'd like to have. Simples!!

Désiré Athow

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.