How to Connect an iPad to a Wired Ethernet Internet Port

Even though the iPad is a wireless design, there are some workarounds

What to Know

  • Use adapters: Use a Lightning to USB-3 or USB-C to USB adapter and a USB to Ethernet adapter to connect to Ethernet.
  • Another option: Use a USB hub with an Ethernet port.

This article explains how to connect your iPad to a wired Ethernet internet port, even though it's a wireless device.

These instructions apply to iPad models with USB-C ports and Lightning connectors. If you have an older iPad with the 30-pin connector, you may be able to use these instructions with the Lightning to 30-pin adapter.

A person connecting their iPad to a wired Ethernet cable
Lifewire / Jaime Knoth

Use Lightning and USB Adapters for Wired Access

If your iPad has a Lightning connector, use Apple's Lightning to USB-3 Camera Adapter. This adapter includes a Lightning port to plug into an electrical outlet to charge the iPad while you use it. It also houses a USB port, which means it can connect any compatible USB device to the iPad, such as wired keyboards and MIDI devices.

Newer-generation iPads with USB-C ports require a USB-C to USB adapter.

In either case, you'll also need a USB to Ethernet adapter. This solution works best with Apple's USB to Ethernet Adapter with model number MC704LL/A.

Although you may use a workaround to get other cables to work correctly, you may experience problems using other vendors' adapters.

  1. Connect the Lightning to USB-3 adapter to your iPad.

  2. If your iPad uses a USB-C connector, plug the USB-C to USB adapter into the device.

  3. Plug the USB adapter into the USB to Ethernet adapter and then connect the latter to the network using an Ethernet cable.

  4. Open Settings and look for Ethernet to confirm that you're connected.

Use a USB Hub

If your USB to Ethernet adapter doesn't work well with the Lightning to USB-3 adapter or you have a USB-C-connected iPad, consider a USB hub. Add this accessory alongside a USB adapter or instead of a USB to Ethernet adapter to connect to Ethernet while also using the various ports. If you want to keep your iPad charged and connected to Ethernet, look for a model with a power delivery port.

  1. Connect the USB hub to the iPad. Use a Lighting to USB adapter if necessary.

  2. Attach the USB to Ethernet adapter to a USB port on the hub and connect an Ethernet cord. Or use the hub's Ethernet port.

  3. Connect the Ethernet adapter and Ethernet cable or the Ethernet cord directly from the hub to a router or network port.

  4. In Settings, you'll see the Ethernet option in the menu. This visible setting confirms that your iPad is connected.

 If you experience any problems, restart the iPad and go through the steps again.

If you need to hook your iPad into a network where there is a port available but no Wi-Fi, use a portable router and an Ethernet cable as an alternative. Pocket-sized routers can be a great solution because they don't require many adapters to work and are often quick to install.

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