How to Set Up Your Phone as a Wi-Fi Hotspot

If you need a Wi-Fi connection for your laptop or tablet when you’re on the go, it’s easy to set up a mobile hotspot from your phone.

What is a Wi-Fi hotspot?

Broadly, a Wi-Fi hotspot is just an area with an accessible wireless network. They’re commonly found in public spaces like cafes, but your mobile phone can create them on the fly. To set up a mobile hotspot, you must set your phone to broadcast its cellular signal so that other devices can access it and use it to connect to the internet.

How to Set Up a Mobile Hotspot on iOS

On iOS, select Settings > Cellular > Personal Hotspot and toggle the switch to “On.”

Under that button you’ll see the name of the network, which you will need to know to connect your laptop or tablet to your hotspot, as well as a password section, where you can change the password to your hotspot Wi-Fi network to keep it secure.

How to Set Up a Hotspot on Android

On Android, open Settings > Network & Internet > Hotspot & tethering. Tap on Wi-Fi hotspot and follow instructions to customize your hotspot to your preferences.

Connecting to 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 select the name of the hotspot network. Enter the password (if you set one) to connect to the network and you’ll have successfully set up a mobile hotspot.

If you have issues connecting, double-check the password and the hotspot network name, or try turning the hotspot option off and on again.

Monitor Your Data Usage

Using your device as a mobile Wi-Fi hotspot can eat up a lot of data. If you have an unlimited data plan like those offered by U.S. Cellular®, feel free to use your hotspot as often as you want. If you don’t, be careful. Try not to use your hotspot too much or too often, and avoid streaming videos or downloading large files.

Ready to add a new device to your hotspot network? Visit U.S. Cellular to shop the latest tablets.