Turning Your Smartphone Into a Mobile Hotspot

Keep Wi-Fi enabled devices connected through your smartphone.

By on December 13, 2012

As Americans increasingly turn to smartphones and tablets to become more productive and tap into the wireless world of real-time information, many consumers are discovering that free online and in-store Wireless Workshops are a great place to learn more about their devices’ capabilities. 

Store manager Ryan Sand hosts workshops at the Verizon Wireless Communications Store in downtown San Francisco and is always on the lookout for new and innovative ways to empower customers to keep learning. In a new series addressing frequently asked questions, Ryan shares his answers to workshop attendees’ inquiries about topics such as ways to get online when no Wi-Fi is available. 

Question: “How do I connect and use my Wi-Fi devices on the go if there’s not a Wi-Fi network available?” 

Ryan: Just because you don’t have a Wi-Fi network to connect to at a local coffee shop or in the airport doesn’t mean that all is lost. Did you know that you can share your smartphone’s wireless network with other Wi-Fi-enabled devices?

The Mobile Hotspot feature on your smartphone allows you to create a personal Wi-Fi cloud capable of sharing your wireless network with a variety of Wi-Fi-enabled devices such as notebooks, netbooks, cameras, gaming devices or portable media/MP3 players. The great news is that with Share Everything plans, there is no additional cost to activate, enable or make use of this feature, so you can easily set up a personal Wi-Fi hotspot on your smartphone. 

To enable the basic hotspot through your smartphone, do the following:

• For Android: Open “Settings” > “Tethering & Portable Hotspot” > check the “Portable Hotspot” box 

• For iOS (4.3 and higher): Open “Settings” > select “General” > "Network” > “Personal Hotspot” option

• For BlackBerry (7.1 and higher): Open “Manage Connections” > select “Mobile Hotspot”

• For Windows 8: Open “Settings” > select “Internet Sharing” > turn Sharing “On”

At this point, you should also set up password protection for your new Wi-Fi network and change the settings of your personal hotspot depending on your device and operating system. After activating the built-in Mobile Hotspot capabilities of your smartphone, you can share a reliable Wi-Fi connection with several other Wi-Fi-enabled devices all at once.

If you have more questions about this feature or want to learn other tips and tricks to maximize your smartphone or tablet, visit Wireless Workshop to sign up for a free on-line or in-store program. It’s free for Verizon Wireless customers and non-customers alike.