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While it may be a handy feature, if you have an iPhone 4 or 4S, you can easily use the personal hotspot feature to use your iPhone’s 3G connection to connect your iPad to the internet. When purchasing my iPad 2, I tossed and turned as to whether or not to get the 3G version, however since I am not the richest man in the world, I settled for the WiFi model and now use personal hotspot to access the internet outside of home.This is all done through either a wireless network or Bluetooth and can be initiated under the settings menu on your phone (Settings >Personal Hotspot). By turning it on, you are able to connect your iPad or other devices to your phone and share it;s internet connection.
So does this make the $130 3G iPad upgrade essentially useless? Well yes, but only if you have an iPhone or device that is able to tether to the iPad. It also comes down to whether or not you are willing to turn on personal hotspot every time you want to use your iPad outside of home, or if you would prefer the quicker option of inbuilt 3G.