Personal hotspot is a feature available on many platforms that lets users create a Wi-Fi zone with gadgets such as smartphones or tablet PCs.
Other devices can then connect to this hotspot and use the mobile broadband connection of the device hosting the hotspot.
Some users have reported being able to get personal hotspot working on the iPad 3. According to Vodacom, MTN, and 8ta, however, the new iPad’s Wi-Fi hotspot feature must be enabled by Apple for SA operators.
“The new iPad personal hotspot feature is not available on Vodacom South Africa as the software that supports this feature has not yet been released to Vodacom,” a spokesperson for the operator told MyBroadband. “Vodacom is in talks with Apple to resolve this as soon as possible.”
Mike Fairon, GM of product development and innovation at MTN SA, also said that the iPad 3 doesn’t have the personal Hotspot feature and that there isn’t really anything users can do about it.
“MTN believes that this is a Apple functionality and needs to be enabled by Apple,” Fairon said.
8ta boss Amith Maharaj said that there’s no indication yet from Apple when they would enable personal hotspot for users on South African networks.
“Unfortunately until Apple signs off on this, there is nothing much a user could do to enable this feature,” Maharaj said.
Maharaj also explained that although most tablet PCs running on the competing Android platform do allow using them as a Wi-Fi hotspot in South Africa, this is because manufacturers opted to enable the functionality.
Apple was approached for comment on the personal hotspot feature of the iPad 3, but did not respond by the time of publication.