According to Macworld this morning, Apple have announced that the iPad will go on sale in the UK at the end of March, with the 3G version following sometime in April. The story goes on to say that the new device is likely to be available on O2 and Orange when it hits Blighty. I imagine we can add Vodafone to the list, so the high street exposure should be high. No doubt the 3G version will be discounted by the cellular networks in return for a contract and that will create an interesting anomaly. Will the 3G version actually work out cheaper than the wifi-only iPad if you are prepared to commit to a contract? In the USA, readers will remember, the addition of 3G ups the price of all iPad versions by $130 and that is probably going to be a round £100 here.
Enthusiasts such as MacOldie will have some thinking to do. Will it be the early wifi model and a MiFi or should we wait for the 3G device and fit the micro-SIM? If we opt for the micro-SIM it is yet another dedicated means of internet access (and another £15 or so every month). The MiFi route, on the other hand, allows continued use of the standard data SIM and the opportunity to feed internet to laptop and, if needed, iPhone. Rumours elsewhere indicate that O2 and Orange have already placed orders for micro-SIM cards in readiness for the newcomer.
Since, I imagine, most of the first iPad owners will already own an iPhone and will be paying for data, would it not be a good idea to enable tethering so the iPad can use the iPhone's data feed?