How to Turn On Personal Hotspot Tethering on an iPhone

Personal Hotspot allows you to share your iPhone’s cellular data connection with other devices via Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or USB. This can be very useful when you need to get internet access on a laptop, tablet, or other device that is Wi-Fi enabled but does not have cellular connectivity. Setting up and using Personal Hotspot is easy, here is what you need to know.

Requirements for Using Personal Hotspot

Before you can use Personal Hotspot on your iPhone, you need:

  • An iPhone model iPhone 4S or newer
  • A cellular plan that supports Personal Hotspot. Some carriers charge extra fees for this feature.

You also need to make sure Bluetooth and/or Wi-Fi are enabled on the devices you want to connect to your iPhone’s Personal Hotspot.

How to Turn On Personal Hotspot

Turning on Personal Hotspot is simple:

  1. Open the Settings app on your iPhone
  2. Tap “Personal Hotspot”
  3. Toggle on “Allow Others to Join”

When Personal Hotspot is on, a blue band will appear at the top of your iPhone screen indicating an active connection. The Personal Hotspot icon will also display in your menu bar.

Connect a Device to Personal Hotspot

Once Personal Hotspot is enabled on your iPhone, you can connect devices in a few ways:


  1. Go to the Wi-Fi settings on the device you want to connect
  2. Select your iPhone from the list of available Wi-Fi networks
  3. Enter the Wi-Fi password when prompted


  1. Make sure Bluetooth is enabled on both devices
  2. On the connecting device, go to Bluetooth settings and select your iPhone
  3. Accept the connection request on your iPhone

USB Cable

Simply connect your iPhone to another device like a Mac or iPad using the charging cable. Your device may automatically connect or you may need to allow the connection on one or both devices.

Change the Wi-Fi Password

By default, Personal Hotspot uses a random password for security purposes. You can customize this by:

  1. Going to Settings > Personal Hotspot on your iPhone
  2. Tapping the Wi-Fi Password option
  3. Entering a new password of your choice

Be sure to choose a strong password to keep your connection secure. Share the new password with devices that need to connect to Personal Hotspot.

Monitor and Manage Data Usage

Using Personal Hotspot counts against your monthly cellular data allotment. To keep track of how much data you are using via hotspot:

  • Go to Settings > Cellular to see a breakdown of data usage
  • Set app limits for hotspot if needed
  • Disable Personal Hotspot when not in use to avoid excess charges

If you share your hotspot with family members or others frequently, you can assign specific usage limits through your carrier account. This will prevent any one person from using up too much of your shared data.

Save Battery Life

Personal Hotspot uses more battery since it relies on cellular connectivity. To maximize your iPhone’s battery:

  • Use a battery case or portable charger
  • Dim the screen brightness
  • Turn off Bluetooth and Wi-Fi when not needed
  • Set your device to Low Power Mode
  • Disable Personal Hotspot when not in use

Getting a battery case is highly recommended if you will be using Personal Hotspot regularly.

Tips for Using Personal Hotspot

Here are some additional pointers for using Personal Hotspot efficiently:

  • Restart your iPhone if you have trouble initially turning on Personal Hotspot
  • Reset network settings if Personal Hotspot is not working properly
  • Update your iPhone and connected devices to the latest OS versions
  • Move your iPhone closer to devices if the connection seems slow
  • Disable apps refreshing data in the background to preserve bandwidth


With just a few taps, you can easily turn your iPhone into a portable Wi-Fi hotspot to get other devices online. Personal Hotspot is useful any time you need to add wireless connectivity for a laptop, tablet, or other Wi-Fi enabled device on the go. Just be mindful of your cellular data usage and battery life. Following the tips outlined, you can have a fast, reliable connection to keep all your devices connected.

As an iPhone user for over 5 years, I have utilized Personal Hotspot on every iOS device I’ve owned. It has been immensely helpful for getting work done remotely when Wi-Fi networks are unreliable or keeping kids entertained on long car rides. With proper setup and management, Personal Hotspot can be an invaluable iPhone feature for connectivity.