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Apps [iOS] - Which iPad models have GPS built in?

Author: Robert Taylor Reference Number: AA-00312 Views: 123056 Created: 2014-04-28 20:37 Last Updated: 2019-04-29 10:37 90 Rating/ 31 Voters

The app will run on ALL iPad models currently available.


WiFi-only iPad models (ones without cellular network capability) do NOT have a built-in GPS. Your only option if you have a wi-fi only iPad is to use an external Bluetooth GPS receiver.

Note also, that WiFi-only iPads do NOT have a compass sensor built into them.

There are a number of external Bluetooth GPS devices available. Obviously, you need to evaluate these devices yourself to ensure that they meet your requirements. Hema make NO recomendations regarding any external products suitablility for your intended purpose.

Here are a couple of suggested devices which you may find useful (click them to open the company website): 

The Bad Elf range are stocked in Australia by the online retailer The Flight Store at the Gold Coast Airport.

There are also some units made by Garmin, which have been used with success by customers, such as the Garmin GLO:

Try a Google Search for GPS devices to use with your WiFi only iPad, as the product range is changing all the time.

Important Information

Even though the cellular model iPads are the only ones which have built-in GPS circuitry, you do NOT need to have a mobile data plan and / or SIM installed in the iPad to use the iPad app. When you install the app, the maps are installed along with it, so there is no need to "stream" the maps off the internet while the app is in use.

The app does NOT require an active internet connection while in use.

The image below shows an iPad GPS which DOES have in-built GPS circuitry:

iPad with onboard GPS

There are TWO features shown which give away the fact that the iPad is a GPS equipped model:

  1. The presence of a large black plastic strip along the top edge of the back panel. This strip conceals the GPS antenna.
  2. The presence of a SIM card slot on the right hand side of the case. Only SIM slot equipped iPads have in-built GPS circuitry.

It is wise to be sure that the iPad you are considering purchasing suits your needs. If in doubt about particular model specifications, check on the Apple website or search Google for information.

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