Can You Use a Tablet Without a Service Provider?

If you are wondering if you will have access to your tablet’s full potential without an active service provider you are at the right place.

Here, we will cover everything you need to know in detail and reveal all functions that might be unavailable without cellular service.

The truth is that tablets are wireless devices and they send all of the information wirelessly and if connected to a network you will have access to most of the features and functions.

However, there are a few settings that will be unavailable without service providers such as calling or receiving calls and hotspot service.

If connected to a network your Tablet is a fully functional device, and in this post, we’ve prepared some alternative ways of acquiring internet access without a service provider.

Hence we will discuss on the notion can you use a tablet without a service provider?

How Important is Cellular Network for Tablets?

Wi-Fi vs. Cellular Connection

Can You Use A Tablet Without A Service Provider

Every tablet that has ever existed had the Wi-Fi feature, which means that as long as you have an active Wi-Fi connection you can use your tablet without a service provider.

Some tablets have only implanted Wi-Fi chips and don’t even have the feature to provide cellular connection.

In other words, they are meant to be used more as computers instead of cellphones.

However, if your tablet is equipped with a SIM card slot, you will be able to insert a card with cellular and have access to the internet and make calls, just like cellphones.

If a device has a SIM card attached this means that it can benefit from cellular data. If you’re often traveling and you have work assignments that you have to take care of while on the go, having cellular could be a beneficial feature.

Tablets providing such advanced features as SIM card slots are usually more expensive than their Wi-Fi-only counterparts. But in order to benefit from the tablet’s cellular compatibility, you will have to purchase a cellular data plan to maintain the connection. Once the network recognizes your SIM card, it will allow you to use the cellular data and have internet access depending on your plan.

Tablets with only Wi-Fi included can however use a Wi-Fi signal if available and in contrast to the cellular connection, the Wi-FI doesn’t have limitations on how much data you can transfer each month.

For instance, if you go over your data limit scheduled on your plan, you might receive overage charges on your monthly tablet bill. Where Wi-Fi comes with a fixed price, regardless of the data usage.


Another beneficial alternative to buying a data plan or signing a contract is tethering. This technology allows using an existing smartphones’ cell signal to create a hotspot similar to Wi-Fi, where smart devices can connect to.

The amount of data users consume will charge to the smartphone’s (hotspot device) cell data plan.

This feature varies by carrier and may require an additional monthly charge in order to benefit from it. 

A nifty idea would be to share your smartphone cellular via tethering (hot-spot) and connect to it with your Tablet.

This way you can have internet access from your Tablet, wherever you go as long as you have your smartphone with you.

Monthly Data Plans

Every tablet that uses cellular data will incur charges. Many plans don’t require contracts but charge on how much data you use which don’t require a long-term commitment.

For instance, massive manufacturers and carriers like Apple, AT&T, Verizon, and Sprint sell some of their products with no cell plan attached.

Depending on cell providers located in your area, you may be able to benefit from another SIM card carrier that has supported prepaid plans designed for tablets.

More Ways to Connect Your Tablet to The Internet

If Wi-Fi or cellular connection doesn’t work for your tablet, there are some alternatives that you may find handy.

  • Using a dongle that supports ethernet cable. When having the latest tablet models you should be aware of using a dongle. The dongle represents an additional accessory to connect with your laptop, computer, or smartphone and have devices attached to it.
  • Cable Tethering. This old-school method remains one of the most efficient ways to support your devices with the internet. For instance, if you have active internet on your computer or laptop you simply have to connect your tablet to the computer and share the internet from the PC’s connection.


There are many efficient ways to support all of your devices with the internet depending on your finances and how much time you would love to pay. And yet it is possible to use your tablet without having an active subscription with carriers or other manufacturers that offer such services with their products. If one thing is certain is that your Table can operate just fine without a service provider as long as you provide the device with internet with one of the above-listed ways.

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