On the Go? How to Set Up Your Phone’s Hotspot

For those times when you need a Wi-Fi connection for your laptop or Tablet and none is available, did you know you can use your mobile phone to set up a “personal hotspot?”

Both Apple and Android devices have the option to create a wireless hotspot, which takes the cellular signal your device is using and broadcasts it so that other devices can access the signal and use it to connect to the internet. Any devices you connect to this hotspot will be running off of your cellular data.

If you’ve never tried setting up one of these handy hotspots, keep reading to learn how you can connect to the internet from anywhere.

Setting Up a Hotspot on iOS

On your iPhone, find the Settings and tap on General. Next, find Personal Hotspot and tap on that.

You’ll see an on/off switch for your personal hotspot; turn it on. Under that button will be some text, including the name of the network, which you will need to know to connect your laptop or tablet to your hotspot.

This screen will also include a password section, where you can change the password to your hotspot Wi-Fi network in order to keep it secure.

Setting Up a Hotspot on Android

On your Android phone, open the Settings menu. Under Wireless & Networks, tap on “More.” Next, find “Tethering & portable hotspot” and tap on it.

In this next menu, you’ll see several items with check boxes. Check “Portable Wi-Fi hotspot.” Then, tap directly under “Portable Wi-Fi hotspot settings” and choose a name and password for the network.

Connecting and Using the Hotspot Network

Now that your network is set up, open up the Wi-Fi settings on the device you wish to connect to the hotspot. Make sure Wi-Fi is turned on, and find the name of the hotspot network; connect to the network.

You should now be connected. If you have any issues connecting, check to make sure the hotspot password on your iOS device matches what you are entering as you try to connect to the second device.

Warning: Watch Your Data Usage

Remember: while using the Internet through your cellular device’s hotspot, it can be easy to use up a lot of cellular data very quickly.

If your plan has a limited amount of data, you will want to be careful not to use too much or use the hotspot too often. For example, you may not want to stream videos or download large files while connected to your phone’s hotspot. Otherwise, you may need to pay charges for extra data use or move to a larger plan.