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Topic # 160302 1-Jan-2015 10:37
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Hey there

My parents have just had their aging iPad 2 replaced today after having it stolen. They've bought an Air 2 4G model as they would like to be able to use it wherever they are, but cellular usage is likely to be relatively low and infrequent (no, they don't have a smart phone with data so can't use a phone as a hotspot!).

I'm therefore looking at the best options for them for data; can anyone in the know on this please offer some advice?

The various cheapest main plans from the telcos for data only are:

Skinny: 2GB / $30 / 60 days
2 Degrees: 1GB / $20 / carry-over up to a year
Spark: 500MB / $15 / month?
Vodafone: seems to be 500MB / $20 / month  ("add on")

All of the above are really far more than they require, given usage will be low (at least initially) and irregular, so I wonder if any of the following would be more suitable?

2 Degrees NZ Data Packs:
Prepay: 100MB / $6 / month (auto-renews)
Pay Monthly: 100 MB / $5 / month (auto-renews)

They're currently with 2 Degrees for both their mobiles (again used infrequently) - how do these data packs work? Do they need to purchase a standard 2 degrees nano SIM and then have the $6 prepay pack loaded against this number? And can they do this with no other services against that number? Or do they have to specifically purchase a data SIM?  

Skinny's casual data rates is now 20c a MB - which for their casual purposes may be adequate. Would this rate be available if they purchased a standard Skinny nano SIM and stuck that in the iPad? If so, do they have to initially stick it in a mobile phone, as I recall sometimes an initial call needs to be made to register it on the network.

Thanks for any assistance anyone can provide.

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  Reply # 1206794 1-Jan-2015 11:16
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2 Degrees: 1GB / $20 / carry-over up to a year
Sounds like a low cost long term hassle free option, -if- it works without any other intervention.

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  Reply # 1206811 1-Jan-2015 11:53
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Just got a tablet data SIM from Vodafone for in-laws. Mainly because of coverage - they will use it while around the country. $30 for 5GB initial plan, valid for up to six months. Then after that is $80/5GB (ouch) or the usual $20 option for less.






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  Reply # 1207060 2-Jan-2015 01:47
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2degrees still offer the $99 for 12GB but you need to be in the zone.

"They're currently with 2 Degrees for both their mobiles (again used infrequently) - how do these data packs work? Do they need to purchase a standard 2 degrees nano SIM and then have the $6 prepay pack loaded against this number? And can they do this with no other services against that number? Or do they have to specifically purchase a data SIM?  "

It shouldn't matter, just as long as it's a sim that will fit and it has a number you should be able to manage it online anyways and add whatever you want to it. You shouldn't need anything else before you put the data on it other then to activate it.





You can also follow me on twitter here @kiwifortw I do twitch streams every now and then at twitch.tv/kiwiforthewin :)

HTTP 404 Sarcasm not found.

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  Reply # 1207063 2-Jan-2015 07:21
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change one of their phones onto $19 monthly pack with 500mb of rollover data and share the data to a new sim for ipad? 

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  Reply # 1207082 2-Jan-2015 08:48
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What I did for my mother in law was put her on the spark smart one bill account. Then I went into the portal and set her spend to $0. Since most of the time she is on wifi it's not a problem. Otherwise when she is out and about she can buy one off data knowing she won't every get casual data charges.

But I do think the 2d option for x data for 6 or 12 months is pretty sharp. But my MIL has her home line with Spark so it was easier to just put everything on the one account.

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  Reply # 1207084 2-Jan-2015 09:03
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If you want an easy set and forget option, Vodafone's $10 per month on account 512MB data plan. Sure not the cheapest, but just works and always there.




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  Reply # 1207098 2-Jan-2015 10:25
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"Skinny: 2GB / $30 / 60 days"   Wonder if this will be carry over at the end of January like the voice plans??




Regards,

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  Reply # 1207131 2-Jan-2015 13:10
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coffeebaron: If you want an easy set and forget option, Vodafone's $10 per month on account 512MB data plan. Sure not the cheapest, but just works and always there.


+1 Also if they need more they've got Data Angel to offer more with no chance of casual data

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  Reply # 1207137 2-Jan-2015 13:21
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I wonder if ipads are clever enough to go easy when on 4g. 1gb plan for 1 year ... First weekend away it downloads 1020mb of background stuff I wonder

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  Reply # 1207158 2-Jan-2015 14:07
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joker97: I wonder if ipads are clever enough to go easy when on 4g. 1gb plan for 1 year ... First weekend away it downloads 1020mb of background stuff I wonder


Yes they are... It would be dumb if they weren't. For years now in iOS you've been able to configure whether updates, backups, music + app downloads are allowed on cellular data. You can also disable whole apps from accessing data as well. My iPhone 5s can make 500MB of data last a month, and I'm a moderate data user, just sensible and have iOS configured to use as little as possible.

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  Reply # 1207319 2-Jan-2015 21:33
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Don't discount the vodafone prepay data option. There are a number of benefits

- The $80/5g lasts six months so can cope with a bit of feast and famine
- Every $20 top up gets a bonus 500mb which lasts 30 days (meaning four topups of $20 gets an extra 2g taking it to 7g for $80) 
- Can be renewed before six months if usage goes up or if usage isn't high rely on top ups for a while before buying another pack.





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  Reply # 1208475 5-Jan-2015 12:41
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Hey there

Thanks for all the feedback and ideas; I've only just now had the chance to read this all thoroughly, and the posts really helped me better understand the various options available to them.

While I initially liked the look of the Vodafone's $10 a month package, with a bit more digging as far as I can tell this is only available as an add-on for those with a pay monthly on-account plan, and these plans start at $39/month. If this is correct, this won't work for my parents as they already hardly ever even get through the minimum $20 a year top-up on their current prepay plans!

To assess the options for data-only (when not attached to any other plan), I put together the following table, which may be useful for others considering low-user data-only options:



Given their needs, my sense is the 5GB / 6 mth plans from Vodafone and Skinny appear to offer the best bang for buck - decent quantity of data; allows usage to be spread over six months so provides for erratic use; relatively low monthly cost and cost per GB. Cost is pretty similar, given the Vodafone pack's initial cost is $30 for 3GB (so total cost in first year would be $110 for 8GB versus $120 for 10 GB from Skinny).

Are there any other (low-user) options I've not considered, or any errrors in this analysis?

Thanks once again.

EDIT: I acknowledge the additional data one can get on the Voda package through topping up, however given that the data allowance of 5GB over the six months will already be more than adequate, this isn't really a factor. I also don't think the 12GB 2 degres pack is for them, given it is way more data than they need plus its limit to 2 degress' zones.

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  Reply # 1208478 5-Jan-2015 12:46
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freitasm: Just got a tablet data SIM from Vodafone for in-laws. Mainly because of coverage - they will use it while around the country. $30 for 5GB initial plan, valid for up to six months. Then after that is $80/5GB (ouch) or the usual $20 option for less.




So I assume you are planning on binning the sim in 6 months and getting another one?




Richard rich.ms



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  Reply # 1208490 5-Jan-2015 12:57
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richms:
freitasm: Just got a tablet data SIM from Vodafone for in-laws. Mainly because of coverage - they will use it while around the country. $30 for 5GB initial plan, valid for up to six months. Then after that is $80/5GB (ouch) or the usual $20 option for less.




So I assume you are planning on binning the sim in 6 months and getting another one?


Doh! That so makes sense... given it's just a data sim, there's no worry about the number changing after six months.

Are there any catches to doing this?



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Reply # 1210497 8-Jan-2015 12:39
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freitasm: Just got a tablet data SIM from Vodafone for in-laws. Mainly because of coverage - they will use it while around the country. $30 for 5GB initial plan, valid for up to six months. Then after that is $80/5GB (ouch) or the usual $20 option for less.


As per my post above, this appears to be the best option, but I can't find any reference online to any initial plan of 5GB for $30, nor how to buy this plan.

Vodafone's site has a $30 nano sim, but absolutely no mention of any included data (http://www.vodafone.co.nz/mobile-broadband/prepay/) - I'm not willing risking buying this without knowing for sure if it comes with the 5GB (what a rubbish site for not mentioning such critical details).

DSE shows a Voda nano sim with 250MB for $20 (http://www.dicksmith.co.nz/mobiles-wireless/vodafone)

NL's have a Voda nano sim with 1GB for $30 (https://www.noelleeming.co.nz/shop/communications/mobile-cellular-phones-cellphones/vodafone-mobile-phones-cellphones/vodafone-vf-4ff-ppmbb-nano-pp-data-sim-with-1gb/prod131600.html)

No nano sims on HN's site.

Can anyone please advise me how to get a hold of a Voda nano sim with the initial 5GB for $30? Many thanks!



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