Kenya: How to get Safaricom 3G on your iPad

1. Get a new sim card. Do not cut it just yet.

2. Turn SIM PIN Request off (On Nokia E71 go to Settings, Phone, Security, Phone & Sim Card, PIN Request set to off)

3. Add credit *141 voucher number #

4. Purchase a data bundle by texting the word ‘Activate’ to the appropriate short code. i.e

safaricom data bundles

5. Text 450 to get the balance of the data bundle

6. Once you’ve added credit to the sim card, you are now ready to cut the regular SIM into a microSIM.
Instructions are on this link. You just need a pair of scissors and an exacto knife to trace out the microsim shape on the regular sim.

Safaricom & Ipad

At this stage, you can also create a regular sim template using the same instructions on Hijinks, as you will likely need it later.

7. Fit the microsim into the ipad tray, you might need to gently hammer the Microsim into the little ipad tray it so it lays flat. Insert the tray into the ipad slot.

8. You can put the new MicroSIM into the iPad and voila’! you are connected to Safaricom 3G.

Safaricom & Ipad

The tricky part now is how to recharge your account when you run out of credit. The fastest way is to MPESA your MicroSIM number, though that would mean you would be using the more expensive 8 kes per MB instead of the cheaper rates afforded by bundling. At this point, you can remove the MicroSim, fit it into a template created step 6, put into a regular phone, add credit and text ‘activate’ for the appropriate short code and for the bundle you prefer.

IMG_0002

On the iphone, you can use the SIM applications to check your MPESA and Safaricom credit balance, that is not currently possible on the ipad. You can view and even send the request for balances, but there isn’t a mechanism to display the response from Safaricom. I am hoping someone can come up with a solution for this, if you know how, please comment or get in touch.

Update with info from @69mb
:
Re: Topping up, its possible from a postpaid line to topup a prepaid line with a data bundle from the *200# menu. So if you’ve got a postpaid line / a friend with one you can mpesa their bill for the bundle. Sucks this isn’t also on the *100#

Update 2: Safaricom has MicroSims available. Via @blongwe and @whiteafrican. Yet to find out whether topping up issue is easier on the special MicroSIMs.

PS: Rates on Orange look better, here is a grid (thanks Charles!)

Orange rates

11 thoughts on “Kenya: How to get Safaricom 3G on your iPad

  1. Re topping up: its possible from a postpaid line to topup a prepaid line with a data bundle from the *200# menu. So if you’ve got a postpaid line / a friend with one you can mpesa their bill for the bundle. Sucks this isn’t also on the *100#

  2. Where are people getting the Safaricom microsims from? I called Safaricom customer care and they said they don’t have them.

    I heard from a 3rd party that Safaricom is not happy about people using the iPhone and iPad because of the heavy data usage.

    If anyone has been able to get a microsim from Safaricom, pls post the details

  3. The orange device uses a RUIM card – is that the same as a SIM card? Would it work in an iPhone/iPad?

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