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Smartphones & gadgets

Tech how-to: Set up a mobile hotspot

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Presented by T-Mobile

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Whether you’re working remotely, trying to stay connected with family and friends or just looking for important news updates, you need a reliable way to get online.

The major strain on internet networks right now means your home connection may not be as strong as it once was. What can you do if your internet is spotty?

Turn your phone into a wireless hotspot. It can be a lifesaver when you’re working on a laptop and in dire need of a strong connection. Keep reading and we’ll show you how to set it up.

3 reasons for a mobile hotspot

The world is changing rapidly and stable internet connections are more important than ever. While there are still times we’re going to want to binge-watch Netflix, more important tasks could be at hand.

For example, what if you need to make an important video call and everyone else in your house is online? Your boss isn’t going to want to hear about junior hogging network resources while playing “League of Legends.” You’ll need to have a more stable online connection for flawless video meetings.

Or, you might be working from home and want to take advantage of the beautiful weather outside. Soaking up Mother Nature is a great way to keep the mind healthy. If you don’t have a strong network connection on your porch, you can set up a mobile hotspot in no time.

Lastly, while road trips aren’t the norm these days you might still want to get out of the house for a while and go for a drive. If you’re the passenger in the car and need to finish a quick work assignment, with a mobile hotspot you can easily do it.

That’s just a few reasons you might want to set up a mobile hotspot. Don’t worry, the process of setting it up is really simple.

How to set up a hotspot

Before we show you how to set up a hotspot here’s a friendly reminder: Make sure to check with your mobile carrier first and find out how much data you’re allowed to use for a hotspot and what comes with your plan. You don’t want to incur extra fees if they can be avoided. Onto the setup process.

Wi-Fi hotspot for Android devices

Note: There are multiple manufacturers for Android devices so the instructions to set up a hotspot with your model may be different than the ones we’re providing here. Check with your phone’s manual for those instructions. Tap or click here for thousands of free online user manuals.

  • On your Android phone, open Settings >> Wireless & networks.
  • Tap Tethering & portable hotspot.
  • Tap Set up Wi-Fi hotspot.
  • Customize your Network name and add security with a strong password. Tap or click here for ways to create great passwords.
  • Now, scan available Wi-Fi networks from the device that you are connecting. You should find the network of your Android phone that you just named.
  • Connect to the Android phone by entering the Wi-Fi password.

That’s it, you’re now connected to your Android phone’s hotspot. You can also tether your phone via Bluetooth or USB cable. Tethering is sharing your phone’s internet with another device through Bluetooth or a USB cable.

To turn it on, got to your phone’s Settings >> Wireless & networks >> tap Tethering & portable hotspot >> tap Bluetooth tethering to turn it on. Now, pair your device to your Android phone via Bluetooth to start tethering.

To connect via USB, go to your Android’s Settings >> Wireless & networks >> tap Tethering & portable hotspot >> tap USB tethering to turn it on. Now, connect your device to your Android phone via USB cable to start tethering.

Wi-Fi hotspot for Apple devices

  • Open your iPhone’s Settings and tap Personal Hotspot.
  • On the Personal Hotspot page, create a strong password.
  • Toggle the switch next to Personal Hotspot to the right to turn it on. (Note: The toggle will be green when it’s on.)
  • If your iPhone’s Wi-Fi and Bluetooth are not on, a prompt will appear asking you to turn them on. If you chose to leave them off, you will be limited to tethering with USB only.
  • Scan for available Wi-Fi networks from the device that you are connecting. Your iPhone’s hotspot will show up with its name. (Note: You can set your iPhone’s name in Settings >> General >> About).
  • Connect the device to your iPhone then enter the Wi-Fi password.

That’s it, your device is now connected to your iPhone’s hotspot. Just like with Android, you can tether your iPhone’s hotspot using Bluetooth or a USB cable.

To use Bluetooth hotspot, open Bluetooth settings on the device you want to connect to your iPhone. Find your iPhone on the list of available Bluetooth devices, then pair it by entering the pairing code and accepting the request.

Tethering via USB cable is super easy. As long as your iPhone’s hotspot is on and it’s connected to your computer via USB, you’re all set.

Navigating our current reality can be a struggle without a little know-how. Taking advantage of simple tips like these can help make things easier and more efficient.

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