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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
From what I read, only the expensive model Ipads have a built in GPS. However, there are inexpensive Bluetooth linked GPS for the less expensive ipads. Has anyone used these?
 

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I have used these with android systems, when they first came out. They do work quite well, but battery life is not amazing. Perhaps there are some on the market with ac adapters ?


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You might want to consider some of the inexpensive android tablets available. eBay has them for $100. I don't know if they would suit your needs. Th advantage of a wireless Bluetooth GPS modules is that you can have them on deck , for Better reception , while you are comfortable down below


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Wifi iPads do not have GPS. Only the Verizon or ATT (etc) iPads have GPS. But you do NOT need a data plan for the GPS to work. Given the versatility of the ipad and array of available navigational tools, I would not buy a dedicated GPS although I have one as a backup (but never use it).

Using external GPS antennas does suck a lot of power and I do not prefer then, having used one with an early iPod touch.
 

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but battery life is not amazing. Perhaps there are some on the market with ac adapters ?
So the OP understands the wi-fi iPads do not have GPS I think. I only have experience with a couple of iPad 2 models with wi-fi only but the Garmin works fine with it. You do not need a data plan for it to work this way! If you have an iPhone also you can use the phone as a hotspot and connect the tablet via BT as well to get internet access.

It stays where you place it and I just have a small waterproof case I place mine in when on deck, although it works fine in the cabin as well. I get at least 8 hours from the GPS, and all day with the iPad. The Garmin unit recharges via a USB port, just like the iPad, so getting it charged up is never an issue.
 

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Unless you are planning to carry a sextant (kidding) I would recommend a backup system (stand alone gps). Simple units can be had these days for very little. Just my 2 cents. Depending on where you sail perhaps.



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The increased cost for the iPads with internal gps is only 30 dollars more than the cost of buying a non-capable IPad plus the external gps. It makes no sense to have to deal with two components.

I did buy an iPad with internal gps, but bought a bluetooth external reciever anyway, as I thought reception down below might be compromised. I was pleasantly surprised to find that the iPad gets fine reception below, without the external receiver.

Power usage on the iPad can be an issue, particularly when running gps apps. Its an issue for the external devices too. However, a simply 12v cig plug can be installed inexpensively, wherever you need one, and your house bank will hardly know its there.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I want the ipad mostly as a sales too for our FrogSuit ipad waterproof case. Being somewhat of a hi-tech Luddite, I will almost certainly keep using my old Garmin hand held GPS and plot my position with paper charts and parallel rulers. Who knows, maybe I'll actually like the convenience of a chart plotter more than disliking complications.
Considering the "complications", I'd prefer an all-in-one unit with gps but they seem to be about $600. I don't do social media (unless you count this), dont' watch movies etc. and dislike videos on tablets so I am skeptical of non-chart plotter uses for the ipad in my life. So, would the less expensive ipad with external Blue tooth gps be too complicated for someone who loathes technical complexity? I already have two identical hand held Garminss.
 

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Plus a data plan.
It's been hard to keep ahead of this misinformation. It's very common.

You DO NOT need to sign up for a data plan for the gps to be fully functional. You only need to buy the iPad that has the 3G/4G cell data feature, which is the one that comes with the gps receiver.
 

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It's been hard to keep ahead of this misinformation. It's very common. You DO NOT need to sign up for a data plan for the gps to be fully functional. You only need to buy the iPad that has the wifi feature, which is the one that comes with the gps receiver.
That is incorrect. Possibly a typo? You need to purchase the ipad with the 3g/4g to get the GPS because the GPS radio is on the same component as the 3g/4g radio. You do not need a data plan for the internal GPS to work.
 

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Plus a data plan.
You do not have to buy the data plan. I am typing on my ipad 4 right now. It is a ATT version with the 4g chip and GPS but no data plan.

I know a little bit about ipads as i have deployed plenty of them at work right from the original to the current Air.
 

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Plus a data plan.

No, you don't need a data plan.. I have a Verizon capable iPad Air but have never activated the cellular data plan. GPS works fine without it even well out of cell or WiFi range. Non 3G/4G iPads, meaning WiFi only models, do not have built in GPS and require an external GPS.
 

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It does not require the data plan, but most people would think it absurd to buy the iPad with this capability and not use it.

Everyone makes this too complicated.

The iPad Wi-Fi has no built in GPS.

The iPad with cellular does have GPS. It does not require a cellular signal to function.

It is that simple. You do not need the data plan, but most places require you sign up with one.

With the iPad Wi-Fi and a GPS receiver you need only tap the BT tab and choose the device and it will connect.

If you do not have first hand knowledge please don't post inaccurate information.
 

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It does not require the data plan, but most people would think it absurd to buy the iPad with this capability and not use it. Everyone makes this too complicated. The iPad Wi-Fi has no built in GPS. The iPad with cellular does have GPS. It does not require a cellular signal to function. It is that simple. You do not need the data plan, but most places require you sign up with one. With the iPad Wi-Fi and a GPS receiver you need only tap the BT tab and choose the device and it will connect. If you do not have first hand knowledge please don't post inaccurate information.
Agreed on most points especially the last!

BTW, i have purcahes about 45 ipads from about 5 different vendors(none of them wer cellular providers). All had cellular chip with no data plan. Not once was i even asked to activate let alone required. I think this happens when you purchase the ipad from a cellular provider.
 

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That is incorrect. Possibly a typo? You need to purchase the ipad with the 3g/4g to get the GPS because the GPS radio is on the same component as the 3g/4g radio. You do not need a data plan for the internal GPS to work.
For a minute, I thought you were nuts and said the same thing. Then I did notice the typo and have now fixed it.
 

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I stand by the recommendation for an additional $30-$40, one gets the iPad with the internal GPS receiver. One device, easy. The bluetooth receiver must be kept charged separately.

In addition, imagine changing your mind on the cell plan down the road and wishing you spent a few more dollars just to have the option. In the grand scheme of things, its nothing.
 

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It does not require the data plan, but most people would think it absurd to buy the iPad with this capability and not use it.

Everyone makes this too complicated.

The iPad Wi-Fi has no built in GPS.

The iPad with cellular does have GPS. It does not require a cellular signal to function.

It is that simple. You do not need the data plan, but most places require you sign up with one.

With the iPad Wi-Fi and a GPS receiver you need only tap the BT tab and choose the device and it will connect.

If you do not have first hand knowledge please don't post inaccurate information.
How about the inaccurate information about "most places" requiring you to active a cell plan to buy a 3G/4G iPad..? Hello pot.... ;)
 
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