How to tether your Apple iPhone to your laptop for internet access

  • Use your iPhone to get broadband internet
  • Learn how to connect your iPhone to your laptop
  • Be wary of excess usage fees

You wouldn’t believe how many people own Apple iPhones, yet don’t know how to use them as a source of broadband internet for their laptop computer while on the go. Laptops are great, but what if you suddenly need to access the internet and you don’t have a Mobile Wireless USB dongle, or you are nowhere near a Wi-Fi enabled Internet café? This is when tethering your Apple iPhone comes into the equation.

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The Apple iPhone Personal Hotspot:

Apple iPhone plans always come with included internet data, and this data can be used in times of need by creating a ‘Personal Hotspot’ on the iPhone for your laptop to access. Ensure your iPhone plan has a large enough data quota for you to use, as excess usage fees are not fun to encounter.

Creating a ‘Personal Hotspot’ is a very simple process. Once you’ve done it you won’t believe you’d never done it before. Simply hit the ‘Settings’ icon on your iPhone’s screen, and then go down the list to the Personal Hotspot button. Click this and you’ll be shown two options on how to share your iPhone’s internet connection with your computer.

Tethering the iPhone via USB cable:

To be honest, this is how I’ve tethered my Apple iPhone 3GS, as it was so simple and easy to do. Sadly, I’m not a technological genius. Simply plug your iPhone into your laptop via a USB cable, just as you might do when downloading music onto your iPhone from iTunes on your computer, or when you charge the iPhone via a computer’s energy source.

Once it’s plugged in all you have to do is go into System Preferences on your laptop, and then click on Network Settings. Choose iPhone from the list of possible network services listed. Before you know it your iPhone will say ‘Personal Hotspot: 1 connection’, and you can access the internet on your laptop using your Apple iPhone’s 3G data plan.

Tethering the iPhone via Bluetooth:

I have yet to try this method, but the idea is to tether a Personal Hotspot wirelessly via Bluetooth from the iPhone to the computer. The first step is to ‘pair’ the iPhone with your laptop. Next step, you need to tap ‘Pair’ on your iPhone. Once this has been done, enter the code that will now be displayed on your computer. Lastly, create the tethered connection from the iPhone to the computer. You are done.

Check out Apple iPad 2 3G Mobile Wireless broadband plans on the Compare Broadband website. Here are a few examples of good iPad plans currently on offer:

Amaysim Prepaid $9.90 1GB Micro-SIM 3G Mobile Wireless broadband plan for iPad: This plan has a 30-day expiry period, there are no excess usage charges, and you can use your data quota anytime you like. When you need more data, simply recharge like you do with your mobile phone. Call Amaysim on 1300 763 813 for more details about this plan.

Virgin Broadband iPad $29.00 4GB Micro-SIM 3G Mobile Wireless month-to-month broadband plan: This plan is a post-paid option, yet it only lasts a month at a time, so you still have flexibility. You get a hefty 4GB per month that you can use anytime, and your connection will be slowed to 128kbps if you reach your quota, with no excess usage charges incurred. This plan works with both Apple iPad and Apple iPad 2. Call Virgin Broadband on 1300 106 571 for more information about this offer.

Telstra BigPond Prepaid iPad $30.00 3GB Micro-SIM 3G Mobile Wireless broadband plan: Telstra BigPond and its NextG network has the fastest speeds and widest coverage of any Mobile Wireless broadband provider in Australia. This iPad plan offers 3GB that you can use anytime, and as it’s prepaid you never have to deal with excess usage charges.