Beware: New iPad can gobble up data plans

John Aaron, wtop.com

WASHINGTON – Are you eagerly awaiting the arrival of Apple’s new 4G iPad? You may not like it as much once it begins to burn through your data plan.

“When you start having a larger screen and higher speeds, you’re tempted to download more data,” says CBS News and CNET technology analyst Larry Magid. “You’re going to be downloading a lot, and depending on your data plan, you could quickly go through it” and end up with some hefty bills.

Tecca.com says the new iPad can theoretically max out AT&T’s top monthly data plan — 5GB — in just 10 minutes. Verizon’s 10GB plan could be used up in just 20 minutes. Tecca also says just one careless download of a 1080p high-definition movie from iTunes could eat up your entire monthly plan.

AT&T and Verizon charge $10 for each additional gigabyte of data after the standard allotment is used up.

Magid says to closely monitor your data usage, either through the device or through your wireless carrier. He also says there’s another way around the issue: Wi-Fi.

“If you can possibly get access to a Wi-Fi network, use that instead,” Magid says, adding that he has ordered the Wi-Fi version of the latest iPad, rather than pay for another data plan. “If I’m going to watch a movie, it’s going to be on a Wi-Fi network,” he says.

The 4G iPad will be available on March 16.

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(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)


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