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Archive 2010 · iPad or air card?
  
 
Ralph Thompson
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p.1 #1 · iPad or air card?


Here's the deal....I'm a Sports Photographer (mainly T&I). I grew my business as an action photographer and still do a a couple baseball tournaments a year. I use the tournaments (mainly state level and above) to recruit new T&I customers.

Here's my delemma.... I'm doing two tournaments this summer and would like to offer some products that need to be printed off-site (I don't want to bring a "poster" size printer to the field). I use Costco to print these large prints because they charge less than it costs me to print...and they are faster that me...

I've toyed with buying an iPad (not only for this but...) I was told it has a built-in air card that you can turn off & on via ATT (they are my current cell provider). Therefore, I could use this to upload to my print provider.

I also have laptops (PC based) which I'm using for my on-site printing (a couple dye sub printers) & editing. I could just pick up an aircard and use the pc....

My question are:
1. can you plug an external hard drive into a iPad?
2.Has anyone tried to upload photos from a iPad is it quick and "doable"?
3. For aircard users (ATT) how fast are the uploads (I realize that depends somewhat on the vendor on the recieving end)?
4. Can you turn an aircard off & on like an iPad (turn it on for a month and then turn it off etc...)
5. I don't currently use an iPhone, but can you use an iPhone as an aircard?

I know these are loaded questions but with the vast amount of experience of those in this forum, I feel I can get some feedback. I know I'm not the only one facing this decision.

Thanks,


Ralph



Jun 08, 2010 at 03:01 PM
mdude85
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p.1 #2 · iPad or air card?


1. Technically yes, but to do so you'd need to jailbreak your iPad and would need terminal access the drive such as with a Macbook (so it would kind of defeat the purpose because you could just plug the drive into the Macbook). Out of the box, the iPad cannot be plugged into an external hard drive except for a memory card via a Camera Connection Kit.

2. Technically yes, but you'd need to jailbreak the iPad, load a file viewer such as iFile to do so. Out of the box, the iPad does not have a user-accessible file structure

3. The iPad does not have an "air card", it has a 3G radio, which is the same radio in 3G phones. 3G speeds are around 30kb/sec download, 5kb/sec upload in my experience with ATT in the congested Washington DC market.

4. Yes, you can turn the 3G on and off on the iPad -- the iPad also has Wifi.

5. Technically yes, with a jailbreak - ATT disables tethering the iPhone to an iPad out of the box.



Jun 08, 2010 at 03:26 PM
luketrot
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p.1 #3 · iPad or air card?


Get an Aircard, the iBook looks pretty but once again falls short in usability for your needs.

My iPhone 3Gs is currently getting 2081kb/s down and 308kb/s up. My Verizon Aircard is getting 948kb/s down and 499kb/s up. Your results will vary.

Personally I would check the 3G coverage in your area and probably lean towards a Verizon Aircard as they seem to have better 3G coverage..




Jun 08, 2010 at 08:59 PM
jefferies1
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p.1 #4 · iPad or air card?


If CLEAR is in your area it is 1/2 the price for 4G internet. Makes a major difference in both upload and download.


Jun 08, 2010 at 11:17 PM
jojosung
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p.1 #5 · iPad or air card?


you get an air card, you might not be able to put the sim card from your phone into the air card without incurring major $$$ <- I use "might" b/c if you get unbranded aircard, you'll be ok.

ipad doesn't use normal sim card. It uses microsim.

clear is a good choice.



Jun 09, 2010 at 01:24 AM
nb_ken
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p.1 #6 · iPad or air card?


C'mon Ralph, you know you want an iPad. It's just so darned ... cool. It's got apps. You know, apps. Like video bowling and resturant reviews and stuff. And a gps in case you forget where you are.

Your questions make it sound like you're considering buying one to do actual work. How pedestrian. Jobs would be disappointed in you.



Jun 09, 2010 at 02:11 AM
Ralph Thompson
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p.1 #7 · iPad or air card?


nb_ken wrote:
C'mon Ralph, you know you want an iPad. It's just so darned ... cool. It's got apps. You know, apps. Like video bowling and resturant reviews and stuff. And a gps in case you forget where you are.

Your questions make it sound like you're considering buying one to do actual work. How pedestrian. Jobs would be disappointed in you.


I'd still have two cans and a string if I could get away with it!!!

Thanks all for the replys. I think I'll go with an air card. I had not thought about pulling the sim card out of my phone.......Hmmmmmmm......



Jun 09, 2010 at 03:23 AM
 

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OutaFocus
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p.1 #8 · iPad or air card?


I pair my Clear 3G/4G "aircard" with the Clearspot portable WiFi router. That way I have WiFi internet access for my laptop, iPad, iPhone at the same time. I can share internet connections wirelessly with 8 devices. That way I didn't have to buy the 3G version of the iPad and still access the internet portably.

Verizon and Sprint also have their version of the battery powered portable WiFi router. They are all small enough to put in your pocket. I use mine with a car cord to in the car and supply Internet access to everyone in the car. I think this is the best option.



Jun 09, 2010 at 11:40 AM
mdude85
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p.1 #9 · iPad or air card?


luketrot wrote:
My iPhone 3Gs is currently getting 2081kb/s down and 308kb/s up. My Verizon Aircard is getting 948kb/s down and 499kb/s up. Your results will vary.



Those are not your actual speeds -- whatever test you are using is picking up the HSUPA bandwidth of 2.1 Mbps down and 0.3 Mbps up -- it is bypassing the proxy which limits your real download and upload speed. The iPhone does not actually support bypassing the proxy to use the HSUPA's true bandwidth.

The same thing appears to be happening with your air card.



Jun 09, 2010 at 03:10 PM
luketrot
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p.1 #10 · iPad or air card?


mdude85 wrote:
Those are not your actual speeds -- whatever test you are using is picking up the HSUPA bandwidth of 2.1 Mbps down and 0.3 Mbps up -- it is bypassing the proxy which limits your real download and upload speed. The iPhone does not actually support bypassing the proxy to use the HSUPA's true bandwidth.

The same thing appears to be happening with your air card.


mdude85, you should probably inform PC World that their latest published 3g tests are flawed as well.......







BTW, here is a screenshot of my iPhone as you can see WiFi is off.









Jun 10, 2010 at 07:33 PM
mdude85
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p.1 #11 · iPad or air card?


luketrot wrote:
mdude85, you should probably inform PC World that their latest published 3g tests are flawed as well.......

http://theflickcast.com/wp-content/uploads//laptopchart-original.jpg



No, that data is not flawed. As noted, that is the data gathered from a laptop tapping directly into the network via a TCP connection, which bypasses the proxy on phones and also bypasses the hardware on the phones that limits the theoretical upload speed to the network. The latency and whatever server is being downloaded or uploaded to also plays a factor, particularly in 3G connections. On smartphones the proxy and the hardware will reduce the download and upload speeds by 30-60%. This of course ignores the other intervening factors such as the backhaul capacity at cell towers, the proximity to a cell tower, structural interference and what the maximum speed of the particular cell site is (HSUPA v HSDPA, for instance). PCWorld's own tests on 3G networks showed an average down speed for ATT on the iPhone of around 1200 kbps (or about 130 kB/sec) down and about 200 kbps (around 75 kB/sec) up. That is a roughly 30% decrease from the laptop tests and about a 50% decrease from the theoretical bandwidth of the network.



Jun 10, 2010 at 08:00 PM
luketrot
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p.1 #12 · iPad or air card?


As noted, that is the data gathered from a laptop tapping directly into the network via a TCP connection, which bypasses the proxy on phones and also bypasses the hardware on the phones that limits the theoretical upload speed to the network. The latency and whatever server is being downloaded or uploaded to also plays a factor, particularly in 3G connections. On smartphones the proxy and the hardware will reduce the download and upload speeds by 30-60%.

mdude85, So what your saying is tethered laptops get DSL speeds but 3G iPad's and phones only see dialup speeds?

Regardless, the OP asked about tethered speeds, there was nothing inaccurate about the numbers I gave in my area at that time. Yes we all understand the numbers can very based on a million different factors.



Jun 10, 2010 at 08:17 PM
mdude85
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p.1 #13 · iPad or air card?


luketrot wrote:
mdude85, So what your saying is tethered laptops get DSL speeds but 3G iPad's and phones only see dialup speeds?


No, I'm not saying that at all -- I am saying that the speeds on a sites/apps such as Speedtest are not indicative of how data is actually being transferred to and from the device, even though it appears to be. Anyway, getting back to the topic at hand, I think it would not be such a wise idea to use a 3G radio to upload large amounts of data from an iPad. You also run the risk of exceeding ATT's soft 5 GB monthly cap on data transfers.



Jun 10, 2010 at 08:42 PM





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