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Does the iPod touch 4 Come with an Internet Plan?

written by: Rochelle Connery•edited by: Elizabeth Wistrom•updated: 8/29/2011

When you get a fourth generation iPod touch, you instantly want to get connected to the internet. That is not a quick process, however, unless you have a few other things in place. Learn how the fourth generation iPod touch connects to the Internet, and if it comes with an internet service plan

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    Fourth Generation iPod touch Capabilities

    "iPod touch Can I get internet service for my iPod touch 4?" This is the question many owners ask when they get a new iPod. Internet connection is probably the most popular feature on this model and all previous touch models, as it’s one of the only things that distinguishes the touch from the rest of the iPod family.

    The iPod touch 4 is not an iPhone, however. People often think it has all the same functionality as an iPhone, minus the calling plan, but it doesn’t. True, it is very similar, but it’s lacking in a big way - internet connectivity.

    Any iPod touch device connects to a wireless network only. It does not receive a signal from a cell tower, as there is no antennae present. Thus, it cannot connect to the Internet with a service plan any more than it can connect to a 3G or 4G tower to make a phone call.

    Any talking capabilities the iPod touch has comes through an app of some sort. If you use a chat service, like Oovoo or Skype, you must use a wireless connection to do so. It won’t magically connect to a tower just because you’re using such an app.

    Your iPod won’t have 24/7 connection to a wireless source unless you keep it within range of a wireless signal at all times. Most owners who want this function have a wireless network in their homes. This can prove a problem, technically speaking, for those who do not wish to have a wireless network, or do not know how to install one.

    So, can you get an internet service plan for iPod touch devices if you ordered one from Apple? Actually, no. Under no circumstances does Apple, AT&T or any other carrier provide internet services for an iPod touch device. So you can’t get an internet service plan even if you wanted to pay extra for one, because they don’t exist.

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    Connecting the Device to Your Wireless Network

    Many new iPod touch users have trouble connecting their iPod touch devices to a wireless network, so they wonder if they can make it easier by getting a service plan. In reality, it’s not that hard to connect to WiFi. The iPod makes it very easy to access the settings and connect to the network.

    Turn on the iPod and log in if you put a pass code on your screen. Navigate to the “Settings" app, which is a silver icon featuring gear cogs. Tap the icon, then scroll down to the “WiFi" tab. Tap the tab, then under “Choose a Network," select the network name that pops up. This should be the closest network to you, probably your home network unless you’re getting reception from your neighbor’s network as well. There sometimes tends to be a little bit of overlap, depending on your proximity to other networks.

    If you have a wireless pass code on your network, type it into the password box. Then, as soon as it’s typed in, it will connect automatically.

    You’ll know your device is connected to a wireless network when you see the signal bars glowing blue at the top left of the device screen.

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    Where to Look for a Wireless Network

    Your home network is probably the most reliable source for getting your wireless connectivity. After all, you’ll likely use it here the most, unless you need to use it at work. Yet, what about outside the parameters of home and work? Can you find other locations with a wireless network that allows iPod touch devices to link up to the internet?

    The answer is yes, you can. I get internet service for my iPod touch 4 at Starbuck’s, for example. In fact, many coffee houses are known for having free wireless networks. Airports, hotels and libraries are other popular locations with free wireless networks. Just follow the process in the above section to link up to the network. The first time you connect, you will probably have to go to your browser and accept a Terms and Conditions statement by clicking the “I Agree" button at the bottom of the page. After that, you should be good to go.

    If you don’t know about the existence of a wireless network near you, just go to the settings and see if the iPod picks up a signal. If it does, you might be able to take advantage of it - as long as you don’t need a password.

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    iPod Devices and Wireless

    So all in all, the answer to, “Can I get internet service for my iPod touch 4," is no. However, with free wireless in so many airports, cafes, coffeehouses and businesses, you can access wireless in a number of places. Just remember that you may need a password to access many of them, especially if they are private.