IMy wife and I bought an iPad Mini with Verizon Cellular just after Christmas so she could take it with her to England to visit her mother. We were worried that the Verizon model might not work with a local SIM card from England. It turned out that it worked fine in England, but based on what I have read the past couple of days I probably should have been more worried about how it worked in the U.S.
Before anyone purchases a Verizon version of the iPad, I suggest that you check out the following two URLs. (1) http://macmavenconsulting.com/blog/sim- ... zon-ipads/; which is a description of one person's problems with a Verizon iPad. (2) https://discussions.apple.com/thread/39 ... 0&tstart=0; which is an Apple Support Community thread on the experiences of a lot of users with Verizon.
I ran across these threads because we were planning to purchase a new iPad for my wife to take to England and leave for her mother to use. We needed a cellular version because her mother does not have a computer or any kind of internet connection at her house. Fortunately I found that walmart.com still has new iPad 3s that they are selling, the 64 GB with cellular version is $250 cheaper than a new iPad 4 from Apple. Since walmart.com had both the Verizon and AT&T versions I went online to check about operation in Europe (which is okay for either model) but found the above discussions about trying to use prepaid service one month at a time on Verizon here in the U.S.
It appears that if you only activate prepaid service on Verizon for a month and then turn it off for more than 5 months, the only way to reactivate is to get a new SIM card. According to the thread above with multiple posters, it is essentially impossible to get a prepaid SIM from Verizon. You can buy new prepaid SIMs on Ebay for about $8.00 each or possibly get them free from an Apple Store. Verizon stores only have post-paid SIMs which apparently one can cancel, but every restart requires payment of a $35 activation fee.
So for anyone that wishes to use their cellular iPad like we do, which is to activate the cellular data plan for one or two months a year while we are on vacation and have it off most of the time, it looks like having the Verizon model would be a terrible hassle. I now wish that we had purchased the AT&T version of the iPad Mini. I did choose the AT&T version of the iPad 3 to order from walmart.com.
Discussion of non-operating system issues related to all iPads.
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