iPads are everywhere, and thanks to them, they have shaped the landscape of both the personal and professional worlds. No matter what the reason is, you may be in the market for one, but perhaps you find yourself only being able to get one from the US. Will it work if you travel to the UK? What about other countries? Let’s find out.
A US iPad will work in the UK. This is because iPads (and all Apple products) are designed the same no matter what region of the world they come from. They will use the same power draw and OS. You will only need a Type G power adapter to charge the iPad in the UK.
This article will break down the mechanics of an iPad and determine what if anything is different between one from the US and one from the UK. We will go over power usage, operating systems, and more. Read on to determine what you need in the UK for your US iPad.
Will The US iPad Work In The UK?
Consider that Apple does sell different variations in terms of its hardware in different regions and countries worldwide. The hardware is their physical products, such as their computer, laptops, iPhones, and iPads.
The only reason for this is that various cellular providers worldwide use particular frequencies for mobile connectivity. The other reason is due to various keyboard layouts. For example, Chinese keyboards will have a different layout than English ones.
However, in terms of their products (including the iPad), the power (watts) needed to run Apple’s hardware is specific to the device and will not change no matter where in the world you purchase it or what version (model) it is.
For example, Apple’s USB adapters are either 5W, 10W, 12W, 18W, or 20W, and depending on what iPad model you have, one of these will be applicable no matter if the iPad comes from the US or anywhere else.
This means that you will be able to use an iPad that is (purchased) from the US in the UK and anywhere else, for that matter.
However, even though all iPads (depending on the model) will use the same power, you will have to consider that the UK uses a different socket type compared to the US. This means you will need to use a power adapter that is specific to the UK if you plan on using an iPad from the US in the UK.
Why Can’t You Use A US Adapter In The UK?
Two factors contribute to why you cannot use a US iPad charger (power adapter) in the UK, and these are namely;
- Socket type
- Voltage and frequency
US Vs. UK Socket Types
Many (fifteen, in fact,) different plugs and outlets (socket types) are used worldwide. These socket types range from type “A” all the way to type “O.”. Besides looking different, these socket types are actually different in terms of frequencies and voltages, and this is one of the reasons that the plug and outlet shapes are different for each.
The US uses socket types A and B, while the UK uses type G, and the physical appearance of types A and B compared to G are very different. This means that one will not physically fit into the other.
US Vs. UK Voltage And Frequency
As we stated, the different socket types (and how they look) are due to various countries having different amounts of voltage and frequencies.
Due to the fact that the UK uses a standard voltage of 230 volts with the frequency being 50 Hz compared to the US, which uses 120 volts, electrical appliances (this includes an iPad) that are used in the UK will always require a voltage converter (power adapter).
Which Power Adapter Should I Use In The UK?
There are a couple of options available to you in terms of a compatible power adapter that can be used on your US iPad in the UK. These are namely;
- 3 pinned Type G USB adapter
- USB travel charger
3 Pinned Type G USB Adapter
If you don’t plan on traveling and will only be using your iPad in the UK, then you can purchase a Type G power adapter along with a USB to Apple 30-pin cable. The USB adapter will fit any outlet in the UK, and the Apple cable will be needed to connect it to your iPad.
USB Travel Charger
If you find that you are traveling a lot and are unsure if you will need and what adapters there are in different countries, then your best option would be to purchase a USB travel charger. These come with interchangeable plugs (pins) that can handle anything from 100 to 200 volts. These types of chargers typically come with 4 USB ports and can be used in over 100 countries.
What About The US iPad Software?
As with each Apple product has its unique power requirements, but them being universal no matter if a model comes from a different part of the world; the same goes for the OS (Operating Systems) that runs on the iPads (and all other Apple products).
For example, the iPad OS from inception includes;
- iPadOS 13
- iPadOS 14
- iPadOS 15
- iPadOS 16
Depending on which iPad model you have and which year it was released, one of these operating systems will be running the iPad. For example, an iPad Pro from 2021 will use the iPadOS 14 no matter if it comes from the US or anywhere else in the world.
This means you can use any iPad from the US in the UK or anywhere else in the world. Moreover, it will help if you remember that the Apple store is a global platform that distributes its apps to customers worldwide.
It would be inefficient and impossible for Apple to run different OS versions in different countries, and this would make it impossible for developers to make apps. Thus, you can rest assured that no matter which model iPad from the US you have, it will work in the UK along with all the apps in the App store.
Will UK Peripherals Work With A US iPad?
Even though we found out you will only need a UK power adapter to charge your US IPad because, in essence, all iPads around the world are identical from their OS down to the connection port, you may be wondering if other peripherals will work and connect it.
For example, you may wonder if the Bluetooth speaker you purchased in the UK will work on your US iPad. Take note that the term peripherals include many different pieces of electronic equipment such as monitors, mice, keyboards, printers, projectors, earphones, etc.
All iPads will use Bluetooth and WiFi as their form of wireless connectivity. Depending on the iPad model and the year it was released, it will use one of these versions of Bluetooth;
- Bluetooth version 2.1
- Bluetooth version 4.0
- Bluetooth version 4.2
- Bluetooth version 5
Consider that Bluetooth is a universal wireless connectivity solution, and as long as a peripheral supports the same Bluetooth version, then it will be compatible with the device (in this case, an iPad).
The implications are the same for WiFi. Depending on the iPad model (no matter if it is from the US or anywhere else), it will support (some of) these frequency bands;
- 802.11ax (WiFi 6),
- 802.11ac (WiFi 5),
- 802.11n (WiFi 4),
- 802.11a, 802.11b/g
- 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz
In all instances where you want to connect your US iPad to a wireless device (like a router) in the UK, as long as one (or many) of these frequency bands are supported on the device (which they most likely will be because these are universal frequencies) they will be compatible with one another.
We discovered that a US iPad would work in the UK because all Apple products, including iPads, are universal and utilize the same power to run them. Additionally, their OS are all identical too. The only thing you will need to consider is that the UK uses a different outlet to the US, and as such, charging the iPad will require a UK-specific Type G power adapter instead of the Type A or B that will come with a US iPad.