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How to Tether your Smartphone to another device

Whether you have an iPhone or Android device, it’s easy to tether your phone to another device such as an iPad or laptop. If you’re wondering what tethering is, it’s connecting your phone’s internet capability to other devices via Wi-Fi or USB, so you don’t have to pay extra to get that device online.

So say you’re out and about with your laptop, but there’s no Wi-Fi, you can set up an instant Wi-Fi connection from your iPhone. Or perhaps you have a Wi-Fi-only iPad, but want to use it on the move – whatever you want to do, it’s an ideal way to spread connectivity between devices and you’ll create a password-protected mini Wi-Fi network you can use instantly.

Before we tell you how to do it, there’s a warning – make sure tethering is supported on your phone’s price plan. Some plans, such as 3’s The One Plan, have tethering to other devices included. Others don’t and so you may be charged extra fees, or you’ll need to buy an add-on or bolt-on.

You must check with your network first and it’s worth remembering that most tethering is UK-only unless you want to pay high fees for using it abroad. Once again, check. It’s also worth mentioning that tethering also consumes a lot of battery power, so it’s not something to be used when you’re running low!

Tether your iPhone

You’ll need to have an iPhone 3G, 3GS, 4 or 4S to tether.

On your iPhone, tap Settings, General, Network. Then select Personal Hotspot. Now tap the Wi-Fi Password option.

Unless you’re in a protected place, you’ll probably want to opt for a password. Type in the one you want, then click Done. Now slide on the Personal Hotspot on/off slider to enable the connection.

The phone then creates a network with the same name as your phone – this is the name that appears when you connect it up to iTunes for example – usually it will be something like David’s iPhone. Now just connect to the network using the other devices and the password you specified.

Tether your Android phone

It’s easy to tether an Android handset running Android 2.2 or later.

Firstly go to Settings – it could be on the home screen or it could be hidden in between your apps depending on which version of Android you’re running and what phone you have. Then tap Wireless & Networks and check the box next to Portable Wi-Fi hotspot.

You’re now turning on your phone’s wireless hotspot.

You’ll then need to go into Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot settings to find the SSID (name) and password that’s been set for the network. You can then connect to this wireless network from your PC or tablet – simply tap the network name in your networks list and then enter the password that you found on your Android phone.

You’ll then be connected and you can browse using your phone’s connection.

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