How to Tell if Your iPad Has 3G

By Jason Artman

Suppose that you have just been given a secondhand iPad without the original packaging. Apple's iPad comes in two varieties: one with the ability to use 3G Internet access from a cellular provider, and another with the ability to connect to Wi-Fi access points only. If you are not sure which iPad model you have, you can identify it by the unit's physical characteristics or by examining the device's About screen.

Step 1

Examine the back of the iPad for a black plastic panel running across the top of the device. This panel covers the cellular antenna and indicates a 3G iPad.

Step 2

Examine the right side of the iPad for a small oval-shaped cover. This cover indicates the presence of a SIM card tray, which only 3G iPads have.

Step 3

Examine the back of the iPad for the letters "IMEI" followed by a long number. This number—the International Mobile Equipment Identity—is the unique serial number of the device, which cellular networks require. This number is present only on 3G iPads.

Step 4

Tap the Settings icon on the iPad's home screen, and look for an item titled Cellular Data in the left-hand column. This screen allows you to access and make changes to your wireless account, and is available only on 3G iPads.