I decided to use my laptop as a local Wi-Fi hotspot. That way I could configure it with different passwords and encryption types to try the different options and hope that the iOS device would connect.
I had trouble sharing the Wi-Fi connection using the in built windows functionality (ably explained on lifehacker)
So I installed connectify.me to help me use my laptop as a hotspot. And LO! The iOS devices happily connected through my local hotspot and activation could ensue.
Of course - once I had activated them, the iOS devices had no problems connecting to the Wi-Fi network I originally wanted to use for activation.
I suspect that the local hotspot approach might have some useful secondary benefits that I may have to research:
- monitor traffic without having to setup a proxy
- throttle the network speed
This also means that I can configure my mobile devices to connect over a single Wi-Fi network, and route the requests over other Wi-Fi networks by configuring the laptop connection rather than on multiple mobile devices.
Anyone else doing this? Any hints and tips or other uses you want to share?