- Category: Guides
03 Nov 2012
- Written by Stephen Fenech
We live in a connected world and being able to maintain that connection with all of our devices can be challenging and expensive. But our smartphone can help.
With today’s smartphone contracts there are now always talk, text and data components.
It’s that data component, combined with the smartphone’s ability to connect to both the 3G or 4G networks, which can connect your other devices like laptops, tablets and portable gaming devices.
This is done by setting up your smartphone as a wi-fi hotspot.
And it doesn't matter if you’re using an iPhone, Android device, Windows Phone smartphone or a BlackBerry
With an iPhone look for Personal Hotspot in your settings while Android users can find a Tethering or Portable Hotspot in their settings.
This option on some Windows Phone 7 devices and the upcoming Windows Phone 8 smartphones is called Internet Sharing.
A BlackBerry has a Mobile Hotspot Connections option in the network settings on the device.
And the basics are all the same. Once your device is in this wi-fi hotspot mode it will create a network which can be seen in the list of available networks by the wireless device you’re trying to connect.
After you select your phone in this list you will be asked for a password if you set up password protection. This password which will be generated by the smartphone in the hotspot settings.
After the connection is established your wireless device is now able to connect to the internet via the 3G or 4G connection of your smartphones.
* It’s convenient – you don’t have to go into a café or find a hotspot to connect your tablet or laptop. You can use your smartphone anywhere you have a cellular connection.
* Users can opt to buy a wi-fi only version of the iPad, for example, instead of paying extra for the 3G/4G version because they can use their smartphone to make the connection.
* You only have one data plan instead of two. Many smartphone plans offer generous monthly data allowances which may be more than enough for the smartphone and one other device.
* Takes advantage of the speeds of the 4G networks for your wireless device if you are connecting with a 4G smartphone.
* Using your smartphone has a wi-fi hotspot can drain your battery faster. If you know you’ll be doing this while you’re out and about, be sure to pack your smartphone’s charger.
* There is a risk you may go over your monthly data allowance if you don’t monitor your usage.
* If you have poor reception on your smartphone, don’t expect to have a fast wi-fi hotspot connection or even a connection at all.
* People nearby may try and hook into your connection if you haven't protected it with a password.