1 2 Previous Next 15 Replies Latest reply: Sep 17, 2010 7:11 AM by etresoft
bikinijack Level 2 Level 2 (185 points)
I live in the Marshall islands where my iPad has access to high speed internet but my MacBook Pro does not (don't ask why, it is the third world), is there a way or an app that can allow my iPad to function as a router for my MacBook Pro?

Alum iMac 24" 2.47 ghz (int), MacBook 2ghz (int) core duo, mac mini 2 ghz (int), Mac OS X (10.6.4), a mac guy since 1986
  • 1. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    Philly_Phan Level 6 Level 6 (11,705 points)
    You can do the opposite but not this.
  • 2. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    etresoft Level 7 Level 7 (24,270 points)
    bikinijack wrote:
    I live in the Marshall islands where my iPad has access to high speed internet but my MacBook Pro does not (don't ask why, it is the third world),


    Why? Third world or first world, networks operate the same way.
  • 3. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    OrangeMarlin Level 5 Level 5 (5,130 points)
    bikinijack wrote:
    I live in the Marshall islands where my iPad has access to high speed internet but my MacBook Pro does not (don't ask why, it is the third world), is there a way or an app that can allow my iPad to function as a router for my MacBook Pro?


    I'm sorry, but if the iPad connects to a WiFi, certainly the MBP does.
  • 4. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    bikinijack Level 2 Level 2 (185 points)
    Etresoft said:
    +Why? Third world or first world, networks operate the same way.+

    OrangeMarlin said:
    +I'm sorry, but if the iPad connects to a WiFi, certainly the MBP does.+

    I wasn't going to go into this, but now I must. We have one state/government owned (85% of the shares) telecom service provider here that, when it was set up 20 years go also sold 15% of the shares to private individuals. So while this state owned provider enjoys a total monopoly on providing any form of telecommunication services at the same time they have a huge motive to make as much profit as they can. Please try to avoid using logic here, I know, a lot of this will be well beyond the comprehension of modern day man.

    So here goes the sordid tale: Beginning in 1997, when the internet first came to our shores, we were paying about $800 a MONTH for 3 kbps dialup. Then they gratefully dropped the price about 5 years ago so up until about 6 months ago in the Marshall Islands we were paying ONLY about $400 a month for DIALUP (again about 3 kbps as along it wasn't raining and shorting the the wires out). If you wanted a 128k hookup the price was about $800 a MONTH, 256k was $3,000 a MONTH (and yes, we are talking *US dollars* here).

    Earlier this year they connected a fiber optic cable from Guam to the rest of Micronesia including the Marshall Islands. Now you can get dialup for $39.99 a month unlimited use (before it was $1.80 an hour) and the "higher speed" 256k is now only $129 a month + 1 cent a minute. So you can see, even at these prices, we are still in internet h-e-double toothpick.

    Now, for the complicated iPad/Macbook reverse tethering question/issue. If I took my Macbook Pro to one of the wireless "hotspots" on island, I could purchase a "Minute Card" for $10 that would give me 100 minutes (10 cents a minute) for high speed wireless internet access. These $10 cards will also work with the iPad. However, they also offer a service here *ONLY for cell phones* where you can buy unlimited wireless high speed access for *$15 a month*. You take in your cell phone, and the telecom company rep programs the phone to receive this service. They decided last week that they are going to treat iPads like cell phones and allow them to be available for this $15 monthly unlimited high speed service. So I have a choice: high speed wireless internet access for my Macbook Pro at 10 cents a minute, or use the iPad at $15 a month for the same speed of service.

    Ok, if you are with me up to here, prepare because here is where it gets REALLY complicated.

    The problem I am having is that for me to download say, the 60 MB upgrade of Safari (5.02) for the Mac, I would like to be able to use my iPad with the high speed internet--as opposed to my dialup on my iMac or the expensive wireless for the Macbook Pro--but when I try to download this to the iPad the Apple Download page keeps shifting me to a web page that says I can't download this to an iPad for later transfer to my iMac (I have tried numerous apps, none of them can do this). It is strange, this only happens on the Apple site with the iTunes and Safari updates, all other downloads I can do with numerous apps such as GoodReader, etc. I even tried using the Atomic Browser app at the "Desktop Safari" setting to trick the Apple web site, but to no avail. So that is why I want to tether my Macbook Pro to my iPad, so I can download this stuff to the Macbook Pro because my iPad won't let me.

    Anyway, while it is a small but annoying problem I loathe giving this telecom authority more of my money than it has already sucked out of my pocket over the years when it comes to internet access.

    Sorry for the long explanation, but, um, you guys asked.

    Life in the jungle.
  • 5. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    etresoft Level 7 Level 7 (24,270 points)
    Why don't you just get yourself a 3G USB stick and one of these. Get yourself a micro-sim adapter and put your iPad 3G SIM into the USB stick. Then you can share your high speed connection with all your devices.
  • 6. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    bikinijack Level 2 Level 2 (185 points)
    I already have the micro sim adapter, how does that work with the 3G USB adapter? Sorry for the question, I have never seen the 3G adapter.
  • 7. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    etresoft Level 7 Level 7 (24,270 points)
    Microsim adapter: http://microsim-shop.com/
    D-link 3G router: http://www.d-linkshop.ca/products.php?PID=582
    For the 3G stick, you'll have to pick from one of the compatible sticks

    Another option is an all-in-one unit that is just a 3G router. I have seen a number of those too. Check the web sites for rogers.com and bell.ca. I'm interested in the D-link router so I can get a full 21 MB speed out of it. I think the Rogers and Bell units only give you 7 MB. You'll probably still need a microsim adapter. I'm pretty sure you can buy the 3G sticks for cash from various internet outlets. You don't get the Telco discounted price though.
  • 8. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    bikinijack Level 2 Level 2 (185 points)
    Thanks Etresoft, I appreciate your help.

    The hot spots aren't everywhere, in fact they are few and FAR between. It would be good enough for me to say, pop the sim card out of the iPad, put it in the 3G USB adapter, and then use that with my MacBook Pro at a hot spot... is that how it works, or am I missing something here?
  • 9. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    Asatoran Level 4 Level 4 (2,535 points)
    bikinijack wrote:
    I already have the micro sim adapter, how does that work with the 3G USB adapter? Sorry for the question, I have never seen the 3G adapter.


    What he means is to use your iPad's SIM in a cellular USB adapter, then plug the USB adapter into your Macbook. The same kind of adapter to give your laptop internet when you're not near Wi-Fi.

    The catch is that if your carrier does any "compliance checking", then it may not work, or worse, you may have to pay a fine or have your service terminated, or whatever your contract says. If the prices for data are that different for cellphone and computers, then it is very likely that the wording of the contracts would NOT allow for tethering or using inappropriate devices. Many people can do this "occasionally" but if the wording is in your contract, well, there's not much we can say legally. It's like advising someone that it's okay to jaywalk since "hardly anyone ever gets caught." Forum rules prohibit discussing illegal activities so assuming that my hunch is correct and that your contracts do not allow tethering on the $15 data plans, we can't discuss it further here.

    If tethering is allowed, then besides the USB adapter, the other way to get internet for your laptop is to get a cellphone that can tether. (i.e.: iPhone, if your carrier allows tethering with it. Otherwise, Windows Mobile, Android, etc all have tethering capabilities, usually built-in or by installing an app.) Many non-smartphone can also tether, although sometimes you have to buy a special cable and/or software. I highly doubt that this would be allowed, but if it is, then using a phone to tether rather than the iPad would be a better choice. My point is that the iPad can't tether, but other devices that can use the $15 cellular data plans can tether without modification. (Again, assuming that it's allowed.)
  • 10. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    bikinijack Level 2 Level 2 (185 points)
    The good thing about the Marshall Islands is that there are no contracts, no fines, no prosecutions, no rules, no papers to sign, etc. In the jungle, it is every man for himself.

    The only iPhones available here are ones that have been jail-broken, and that doesn't appeal to me because my vast anal retention-like persona demands I always have the latest update of everything (which actually led to the problem stated above), so it sounds like the idea of a 3G adapter is a good one.

    *But that still brings me to this question: Why do you suppose the Apple site lets you download virtually any other desktop update onto the ipad for later use and sharing..... except for the desktop versions of iTunes and Safari?*
  • 11. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    Asatoran Level 4 Level 4 (2,535 points)
    bikinijack wrote:
    The good thing about the Marshall Islands is that there are no contracts, no fines, no prosecutions, no rules, no papers to sign, etc....


    Uh, ok then. Good luck with that.

    ...In the jungle, it is every man for himself....


    (And yet you asked for help.... :-/ )
  • 12. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    Philly_Phan Level 6 Level 6 (11,705 points)
    Just for the record, my earlier response was incorrect as I misunderstood the problem. I was thinking about a wired connection with the MacBook and the wireless to the iPad. You can't go wireless to wireless because the MacBook can use only a single wireless channel. Obviously, this is academic but I did want to clarify.
  • 13. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    etresoft Level 7 Level 7 (24,270 points)
    bikinijack wrote:
    The hot spots aren't everywhere, in fact they are few and FAR between. It would be good enough for me to say, pop the sim card out of the iPad, put it in the 3G USB adapter, and then use that with my MacBook Pro at a hot spot... is that how it works, or am I missing something here?


    I wouldn't expect you would want to swap out the SIM card on a regular basis. I meant move the SIM to the other device and then only connect the iPad via WiFi to that device.
  • 14. Re: Using an iPad as a router?
    etresoft Level 7 Level 7 (24,270 points)
    Asatoran wrote:
    The catch is that if your carrier does any "compliance checking", then it may not work, or worse, you may have to pay a fine or have your service terminated, or whatever your contract says. ... Many people can do this "occasionally" but if the wording is in your contract, well, there's not much we can say legally. It's like advising someone that it's okay to jaywalk since "hardly anyone ever gets caught." Forum rules prohibit discussing illegal activities so assuming that my hunch is correct and that your contracts do not allow tethering on the $15 data plans, we can't discuss it further here.


    That is a good point. I'm not 100% sure this scheme will work at all. I figured that given the exorbitant prices they are charging, it might be worth a try.

    As for legality, I don't think this qualifies as "illegal". A contract is a civil agreement. A customer can try to get the best value for a service they are paying for. For all we know, the contract, if there is one, doesn't say you can't change devices.

    If the service provider doesn't want people swapping devices, they can use technological means to prevent it. Equally, if the Apple Discussions hosts think my suggestion is out of bounds, they can, and would, delete it.
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