When I started this blog I was convinced that I would get the 64GB + 3G model. Upon reflection I’m now super torn about this, but for a reason I’ve not seen mentioned often. Let me explain.
First let’s get something out of the way: I want my iPad as soon as possible! In the long term will it kill me to wait an additional 30 days for a 3G model? Of course not. But that doesn’t mean that it doesn’t matter to me.
I would love to save the $130 cost on the radio up front not to mention AT&T’s data charges over time. As a related aside, my intent on the data plan would be to literally turn the plan on and off on the fly as needed. If AT&T pro-rates this feature as they do all iPhone add-ons – which remains to be seen – this would be a relatively cheap way to get 3G data only when you absolutely needed it. About $1/day if there’s really no penalty for activating and deactivating on the fly. You’d still have to pay the $130 premium for the radio of course.
If I went with wifi-only I could of course jailbreak my iPhone and use MyWi or a similar app to create a wifi hotspot from my iPhone and use that to surf on my iPad. HOWEVER, for me there’s one big fly in this ointment: international travel. SJ mentioned that international data deals would be announced soon. Hopefully this means prior to shipping either model.
The issue is that AT&T’s international data roaming rates for the iPhone are f*#$ing insane. Like prohibitively expensive such that when I travel I turn off data roaming on my iPhone entirely and use wi-fi only. This works “okay” but there are definitely times and places where there’s no wifi, and so I basically can’t use my iPhone for data. Which in turn would mean that I also couldn’t use my iPad.
Having to use an AT&T iPhone data plan with a jailbroken iPhone in order to surf on the iPad overseas would cost a fortune. That’s why the international plans SJ mentioned are critical to me. If they’re at all reasonable in terms of price, lack of contract requirement, ability to activate and deactivate, etc., then I’m afraid I’ll have to wait for the 3G model. If not, then I might as well get the wifi only model, jailbreak my iPhone, and suck it up when overseas.
For the moment I still lean toward 3G.