In Windows 8.1 Microsoft added the ability to easily share your mobile broadband, like 4G, by creating a WI-Fi hotspot that other WI-Fi devices can connect to. It’s similar to the hosted wireless network feature with Windows 7, but easier to use and works with mobile network connections only. It broadcasts a WI-F signal, allowing you to connect other WI-F devices, like your phone, tablet, or other laptop, to access the Internet.
Since WI-Fi tethering can be a premium feature offered by cell providers, it’s possible for them to disable or limit tethering usage based upon your mobile subscription, which can even affect the support within Windows.
You can enable the WI-Fi hotspot functionality via the PC Settings in the metro-style interface: open the Settings charm (slide along right of screen or press Win + I), select Change PC Settings, select Network, select Connections, and select the mobile broadband connection. Once you enable it, you’ll see the SSID (network name) and password of the tethered network, which you can change by selecting Edit.
There’s one other big down side to turning your phone into a hotspot: It eats up battery life. Many phones can only run for about four hours or so in Hot spot mode. An additional battery, or a battery case is a good idea if you intend to use Hot spot mode frequently.
If you’re a business traveler, for instance, and you need to use a hotspot all day long, your best bet is to get a dedicated Wi-Fi hotspot. Check out our guide to the best mobile hot-spots on every carrier for that.
- Go to Settings.
- Choose Cellular.
- Tap on Set Up Personal Hot spot.
- Go to Settings.
- Choose Personal Hot spot.
- Tap the button to turn your personal hotspot on.
- Agree to Wi-Fi and USB Only.
- Your hotspot is now active. The password is on your iPhone’s screen. Make sure to turn the hotspot off when you’re done using it!
- Go into Settings in the application drawer.
- Under Wireless & Networks, tap More.
- Tap Tethering & Portable Hot spot.
- Tap Set Up Wi-Fi Hot spot to set your password. Tap Save.
- Tap the slider next to Portable Wi-Fi Hot spot to enter Hot spot mode.
- Swipe down from the top of the screen and choose Settings.
- Choose Networks and Connections.
- Tap Mobile Hot spot.
- Step through the instructions. The hotspot will automatically turn on. Make sure to turn it off when you’re done/ The hotspot screen conveniently keeps track of how much data you’ve used.
- Swipe down to get the notifications bar. Choose All Settings.
- Choose All Settings.
- Scroll down to Internet Sharing.
- Make a note of the Wi-Fi network name and password.
- Tap the slider next to Off to turn sharing on.
- It’s a good idea to use your phone’s Data Sense feature to limit your tethering data.
- To use it, go into All Settings and scroll down to Data Sense.
- Tap Set Limit.
- Under Limit Type, tap One Time.
- Under Days Until Data Expires, tap 1.
- Enter the amount of data you want to use while tethering.
- When you’re done tethering, go back into Set Limit and change Limit Type back to none, or to your regular monthly plan.