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Orange and T-Mobile Offer iPad for £199

David Gilbert

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Orange and T-Mobile Offer iPad for £199

Have you been craving one of Apple’s beautiful (if limited) tablets but haven’t been able to scrape together enough sheckles to buy one? Well today could be your lucky day as both Orange and T-Mobile have announced they will sell the iPad for just £199.

Yes people, you read it right. The 16GB WiFi and 3G-enabled iPad will be on sale very soon from both providers for just under £200. Oh, you will have to sign up to at least a 24month contract at £27-a-month (£25 if you’re an existing customer). For that money you will get 1GB of unlimited anytime data and a further 1GB of quiet time date. Quiet time data is anything between midnight and 10am – so not much good to non-insomniacs then. There is also unlimited access to BT Openzone WiFi (unlimited that is to the limit of 3GB).

Those looking for a more sizeable iPad can get the 32GB iPad for £249 up front with the 64GB costing £349, both on the same two-year contract and £25/£27 tariff. This move by both networks is a major shift considering no other provider is offering subsidised deals on iPads at the moment.

Looking at the maths it seems as if the reduced £199 initial price for the tablet will be off-set by the cost of the contract over two years. A new customer to T-Mobile or Orange will be forking out £324-a-year for their subscription while people on Sim-only deals will be paying somewhere around £100-£120 over the course of the year. Therefore while the offer does seem enticing, it works out at pretty much the same as if you bought an iPad from Apple and used a sim-only plan for two years.

No doubt the headline price of £199 will attract a lot of people looking to buy an iPad but without the readies to pay full whack. The deal boils down to, in effect, an elaborate hire-purchase scheme for wannabe tablet owners. It does show however that despite the slew of alternate tablets on offer these days, none has come close to grabbing the attention of the public in the way the iPad has.

Both companies are offering identical rates and prices because since last May they have become part of the same company Everything Everywhere. 3 has also indicated they will be offering subsidised iPad and no doubt O2 and Vodafone will jump on the bandwagon in the near future too. however with a new iteration of the iPad due in the early months of 2011, people on this plan could be stuck with an outdated Apple tablet for up to 20 months. Ouch!

JDunn

November 29, 2010, 8:48 pm

So that's a minimum of £800 to get your hands on a tablet that will be obsolete in price and features in 3 months.

Lantic

November 29, 2010, 9:18 pm

@JDunn - now that you put it like that, where do I sign up :-)

HarryGlass

November 29, 2010, 9:24 pm

I think obsolete is too strong a word. But then it's true of any technology (and especially Apple who'll have one headline grabbing feature, but have everything else a generation behind) that it'll be superceeded in a few months.





I don't think this is any more "headline grabbing" than last year when you could get a netbook/laptop for free/cheap on contract at any of the networks. It's just that this year it's the iPad. This might even make a few people think twice... go into the store and realise you can get an iPad for £200 or a netbook for free.





End of the day, if I wanted a tablet I'd get an Android one around £200-300 and tether it with my phone. Why pay any more?

KultiVator

November 29, 2010, 9:28 pm

@JDunn - It'll hardly be obsolete - it just wont be the 'latest' anymore.





But you could say that about pretty much any lump of tech. Iterative product evolution are all part of the nature of this industry.

KultiVator

November 29, 2010, 10:35 pm

@HK - nice idea if there were any Android tablets (at any price) worth having out there.





I'm an advocate of progress, but current flavours of Android just aren't ready for the tablet form-factor.





Horses for courses - Android will probably get there, but it's still got a way to go to convince me it's ready for an increased role beyond the smartphone. Same argument goes for Windows 7 - does a great job on a Laptop / Desktop, but pretty underwhelming on a tablet device IMHO.

RazorA

November 29, 2010, 11:40 pm

Current Android tablets are also hamstrung by the simple fact that the 2.2 version of Android is just not suitable for the tablet format.





These kind of deals always baffle me as being 'value for money'. When you end up paying more just stretched over a longer period of time.

HarryGlass

November 30, 2010, 12:20 am

2.2 I agree needs some tidy up work, but really I think it all depends what you want from a tablet.





Browsing, email, navigation, light gaming, watching videos, eBooks - Android is fine for all that. I don't really know what people expect that they feel Android isn't ready for. Word Processing, Spreadsheets, Video Rendering, Photoshop - well I wouldn't want any tablet for that, not now and probably not for another 5 years. I feel I'm missing some obvious use, but even looking at the iPad I don't see what it offers that people feel Android so severely lacks.





There's tablets out there for £250-350 that are building an active dev community that have sideloaded Market and all sorts of other tweaks. I just don't have enough use for a tablet to justify getting one; my phone & laptop are fine for now.

Jones

November 30, 2010, 12:45 am

Was emailed about this on Friday. It isn't for me - 3G isnt something I need. But for those looking for a 3G contract and iPad then I think this is a very decent deal.

KultiVator

November 30, 2010, 3:21 am

@HK - I believe that the best is still just a short way ahead of us. Just hope HP, Google and RIM move the game on so that consumers have a real choice of platform and that Apple continue to relax some of their sillier iOS / AppStore restrictions (look how many have fallen by the wayside this year alone).





All in all, the first half of 2011 is shaping up to be a great time for the tablet form-factor. Maybe, just maybe, that'll be the time I actually stump up the cash to buy one!

Moggy58

November 30, 2010, 11:56 am

If you want an iPad best deal looks to me to buy a wi-fi only one outright then get a 3 mi-fi.

LetsGo

November 30, 2010, 2:56 pm

@Moggy58 If you want an iPad best deal looks to me to buy a wi-fi only one outright then get a 3 mi-fi.





A Nokia or Android smartphone with built in tethering is best :)

MarkW

November 30, 2010, 4:21 pm

While I'm all for cheaper gadgets, this is nothing more than a disguised hire purchase scheme. Maybe they should offer this deal in Ireland, I hear they aren't the sharpest when it comes to stuff like this. ;)

cragrat04

December 3, 2010, 8:16 pm

3 are offering the same price plan but with 15 GB a month, much more appealing.

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