Connecting your new iPad 2 to the Internet

How much does it cost to get your new iPad 2 up and running, and connected to the Internet?

Apple's iPad 2 will launch tomorrow in Australia, with prices starting at $579 for the entry level 16GB Wi-Fi version. While everyone knows how much initial outlay the iPad 2 will require, how much does it cost to connect to the Internet?

Read our comprehensive iPad review and our iPad 2 preview, and check out our iPad 2 resource centre for all you need to know about Apple's latest tablet.

For consumers purchasing a Wi-Fi only iPad 2, obtaining an Internet connection is a pretty simple affair. You simply connect the iPad 2 to your current wireless Internet connection at home, or in the office.

You obviously won't be able to browse the Web on a Wi-Fi-only version of iPad 2 if you are travelling away from a wireless hotspot; unless of course you own a smartphone that will allow you to share its 3G data connection, or you have a mobile broadband modem with Wi-Fi.

Smartphones that will allow you to share a mobile 3G connection include an iPhone updated to the latest iOS 4.3 software, or an Android phone like the HTC Desire HD which runs the 2.2 'Froyo' version of Google's Android platform. On the other hand, a mobile broadband modem with Wi-Fi allows multiple devices (such as an iPad 2) to connect to it for shared mobile broadband access over a telco's 3G network.

For consumers purchasing a Wi-Fi + 3G version of the iPad 2, obtaining an Internet connection is achieved by purchasing an iPad specific micro SIM card from either Telstra, Optus or Vodafone.


Telstra sells a prepaid SIM for the original Apple iPad which also works with the iPad 2. The prepaid SIM pack includes 3GB of data for $30. Telstra customers can then recharge their iPad 2 with the following data plans:

1GB: $20
3GB: $30
6GB: $60
9GB: $80
12GB: $100
12GB: $150 (365-day expiry)

All data plans above are available without a contract but have a 30-day expiry, with the exception of the 12GB, $150 plan which has a 365 day expiry.


Optus offers both prepaid as well as BYO month-to-month iPad 2 data plans. The telco offers three month-to-month plans with no contract as follows:

2GB: $20
4GB: $30
8GB: $60

For prepaid plans, an Optus prepaid iPad starter kit costs $30 and includes 3GB of data with a 30-day expiry. Optus also offers a $0 SIM starter kit which includes 500MB of data with a 20-day expiry, sold through stores including Harvey Norman, Dick Smith, Apple, David Jones, and Myer.

Optus prepaid recharges start $15 for 300MB of data with a 15-day expiry and range up to $130 for 15GB of data with an expiry of 12 months. Other prepaid Optus options include $20 (1GB/30 day expiry), $30 (4GB/30 day expiry), $40 (5GB/60 day expiry), $50 ($6GB/60 day expiry), $70 (7GB/3 month expiry), $80 (8GB/6 month expiry), and $100 (10GB/6 month expiry).

VHA (Vodafone Hutchison Australia)

Like Optus, Vodafone offers both prepaid as well as BYO month-to-month iPad data plans, which also work with the iPad 2. The telco offers four month-to-month plans with no contract as follows:

1.5GB: $15
4GB: $29
8GB: $39
10GB: $49

For prepaid users, Vodafone offers a $15 iPad prepaid starter pack which includes 1.5GB of data with a 30-day expiry. The telco then offers six prepaid data plans for the iPad and iPad 2, as follows:

250MB: $9.95 (30 day expiry)
1GB: $14.95 (30 day expiry)
4GB: $29.95 (30 day expiry)
6GB: $100 (180 day expiry)
10GB: $49 (30 day expiry)
12GB: $150 (365 day expiry)

Vodafone previously offered an unlimited data plan with 30-day expiry for $49.95, but replaced this with the $49, 10GB plan in March.

3, which is owned and operated by VHA in Australia, offers both dedicated prepaid and monthly data plans for iPad and iPad 2 tablets. The telco has a smaller range of prepaid data plans, but offers "bonus data" each time customers recharge. The plans are are follows:

500MB+1GB: $15 (30 day expiry)
2GB+2GB: $29 (30 day expiry)
4GB+2GB: $49 (30 day expiry)
12GB: $149 (365 day expiry)

3 says any "bonus data" will not be available immediately upon recharge but will be credited to an account and available for use within 48 hours of a recharge.

All Vodafone and 3 iPad 3G data plans include a free micro SIM starter pack and conveniently, if you recharge before the end of the credit expiry period any unused data will be rolled over to the next month — provided you don't exceed the maximum balance of 14GB.

In addition to prepaid plans, 3 mobile also offers two month-to month iPad plans:

1GB: $15
3GB: $29

Tags MicroSIMAppleiPad 2VodafonetabletsApple iPad 2optusTelstraiPad

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Ross Catanzariti

Ross Catanzariti

Good Gear Guide




too bad, it's not unlimited download quota :(



can i connect e mobile,mobile broadband to the i pad2



is it possible to purchase the ipad aswell as having a data plan like 4gb a month for 18 months or 2years contract?



If I have the ipad 2 with both wifi and 3G can i just connect with WIFI?



how could i by an ipad in enternet



No surprise about Telstra being expensive after all the kick-ups Im surprised the company is still around. Time to get the best QR code and dominate the market



Yeah if I have the iPad 2 can't I just go on wifi



Hi I am from New Zealand I would like to connect my ipad2 to internet but I do not have wi-fi or wireless connection. Can I connect using LAN through telstraclear?

Eli Manning


Everyone please. The iPad 2 is meant for reading like a Amazon Kindle Touch.



Yeah it would be good if when u went to connect it actually did insted of saying it has full bars of signal yet not loading the data account start up page. wht a load of sh/t



What idiot company develops a tablet computer (iPad 2)that will not work UNLESS it is connected to the INTERNET. It is a fantastic design especially the screen, no one has ever produced something so unique. BUT DOES NOT WORK WITHOUT THE INTERNET.
So if someone on bus or train and is about to give a presentation wants to add some extra comments unless he can get an Internet connection HE CANNOT DO ANYTHING With a Laptop there would be no problem. It makes me wonder if the network providers DONATED funds for the research and development of iPad 2.



Comment to Eli it can do more than operate like Amazon Kindle, but to even use it as a document display for pdf doc, ebooks etc IT HAS TO CONNECT TO THE INTERNET. It should not need to do so for reading like Kindle, but the default is it MUST be connected to the Internet i.e. it will not work otherwise.
This is similar to an idea I saw over 35 years ago some idiot designed a keyboard with the keys in alphabetical order????









I think the ipad2 was built for reading only pretty useless for anything else, doesn't work without Internet, and a lot of other things no windows no good for sending cvs can't open some files , really its just like a big book where you can turn the pages with your fingers, wished I would have brought a laptop instead, apple IDs are so confusing I get lost in all the mumbo jumbo, disappointed really



If you don't have Internet at home that you can connect by wifi, don't buy it. But if you do..... It's amazing the possibilities there are. Books, games, banking, and anything else you want on Internet. There's Google and sooooo many apps! I LOVE mine. I don't even use my computer anymore. The Internet question should be asked when you purchase it.



You can by a plug in Internet connection for $69 plus a data plan as low as $10 per month

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