I have an iPad Air 2 64 GB LTE purchased in India. I'm using a network carrier called Airtel for the data. This device is running iOS 8.4 as of posting this question.
Here's my problem-
When I put in my SIM card, the 3G band doesn't work. I don't see an option to manually select a 3G band either. I can see LTE or 2G/Edge but not 3G.
Some of you may ask - Why not just use LTE? Because Airtel only allows LTE for users of post-paid phones. I don't want to use a post paid connection for a device which is seldom out of WiFi range. For the few occasions that I'm not near Wifi, I need the iPad to work with whatever sim card I have with me. Also, LTE coverage is spotty to poor in most Indian cities.
For readers from other countries - specifically from the US, cell phones and tablets are purchased directly from something like a Best Buy after paying full price. These devices are carrier unlocked. It is the norm to swap in whichever SIM card suits your fancy for that day. The expectation from the device is that it should work perfectly.
On Android/Windows Phone/Symbian/Blackberry devices, its a trivial matter to go to the device settings and have the device use a specific network band. This is useful when you have poor 4g/3g coverage and want the device to stick to lets say, 2G/Edge bands. A 2G/Edge band is still quite useful for IM, Emails, SMS and phone calls. Obviously, you can't use it for streaming media, but that's alright.
Recent iOS devices have the hardware capable of using the most popular 2G/3G/4G/LTE/WCDMA bands. However, for reasons best decided by the iOS engineers, the choice to allow this band selection is enabled by the network carrier through the use of some elusive settings and files called the IPCC or Carrier settings files.
For readers from developed countries - most networks in India don't bother providing IPCC files because all non-iOS devices work without these settings just fine. So, when I go to an Apple forum - I'm just asked to use a different network. (As if!)
Anyway, I've searched the Internet high and low for these mystical IPCC files. Most resources are out of date or suggest that you root the device. Rooting is not an option because that would void the warranty.
Every time I connect the iPad to iTunes, I see a popup saying that carrier updates are available...I tell it to go do the update, but then zilch.. nothing happens.
Then I go do the other thing all Internet resources tell me : Settings > General > About > Update... and again, zilch.
So, how do I go about solving this problem?
Thanks for any help.
ps: Any comment or suggestion which mentions that the network carrier should provide these files - I say to them : All other devices work perfectly on their networks, so why should there be special arrangements for an iOS device? In developing countries, iOS devices account for a minor fraction of the subscriber base.