How to Connect Your Computer to the Internet Using Your Cell Phone as a Wireless Internet Connection or Tethered Modem (2023)

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Using your cell phone as a modem is perhaps the most overlooked of all Internet connection options. But a mobile phone Internet connection, whether as a tethered modem or, using bluetooth, a wireless cell phone Internet connection, is easy to set up, and with a laptop and cellphone you can check email and surf the web from anywhere, any time, with the Internet in your pocket!

Here are the basic instructions for creating a mobile phone Internet connection. The instructions are for a cell phone with bluetooth (which most cell phones these days have), but if your cell phone doesn’t have bluetooth you can buy a cable to connect your laptop to your phone from any cell phone accessory provider. Conversely, if your cell phone has bluetooth but your laptop does not, you can buy a small USB device which will enable bluetooth on your computer.

[By the way, Amazon has an incredible sale on the very phone that we use. Check it out here.]

Ok, ready?

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(Video) Using your phone as WiFi Adapter/Dongle sharing internet to your desktop PC

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The first thing you need to do is to go to Ross Barkman’s excellent GPRS Info Page and make a note of the “username” and “password” for your cell provider and service. Even though they are called “usernames” and “passwords”, you aren’t getting information from someone else’s account – this is the information which your cell phone provider uses to make a connection between your cell phone and their data network.

After making sure that your computer is all set, you should check and see whether your cell phone service provider offers a high speed wireless (GPRS) access option – if so you will want to sign up for it, and be sure to sign up for the “unlimited” option. My carrier, for example, is Cingular, and they offer their high speed “MediaNet” access in an unlimited package for $24.95 per month. The Verizon cell phone Internet connection runs on their 10x network, which I’m told is blazing fast. Alternatively, if your carrier doesn’t offer a GPRS high speed Internet access package, or if you just don’t want to take advantage of it, then sign up for whatever data transfer plan your carrier offers. Just be sure to sign up for the unlimited option, or you will have to monitor the time you are uploading and downloading email and otherwise connected to the Internet very closely.

Ok, now that you are all ready and capable, here’s how to connect your laptop to the Internet any time, any where, using your cell phone. These directions are based on the settings for a Mac laptop, but Windows laptops will have similar settings.

If you haven’t yet paired your bluetooth cell phone with your computer, now is the time to do so. First, make sure to set your phone to “discoverable”. Then, go into system preferences, and to the bluetooth section. Check “support non-conforming phones”, and turn bluetooth on for your computer if it isn’t already turned on.

Next run your bluetooth device set-up (on the Mac it’s called “Bluetooth Setup Assistant”), and follow it through to the end, adding your cell phone as a paired device. If your cell phone is already paired, and after you go through the set-up steps you can’t connect your computer to the Internet with your phone, try unpairing and re-pairing your phone using these directions.

Next, go back to your computer’s system set-up (on the Mac it is “System Preferences”), and go to the Network panel. Select “Bluetooth” from the “Show” drop-down menu.

Click on “TCP/IP” and make sure that the “Configure IPv4” drop-down is set to “Using PPP”.

Now click over to the “PPP” tab, and fill in the “Service Provider” blank with the name of your service provider. Some of this information may already be filled in for you from when you did the Bluetooth Setup Assistant.

(Video) how to connect internet from mobile to Laptop via Bluetooth tethering android to pc

Then add in the account name, password, and telephone number required by your provider. The “username” which you got from Ross’ site goes in the “Account Name” field, and the “password” goes in the “Password” field.

For telephone numbers try the following:

For Cingular/AT&T it will usually be either *99***2# or *99# (try both).
For Verizon, try #777
Sprint is also #777
For T-Mobile, I’m told that the same settings at for Cingular will work.

If these phone numbers don’t work, try doing a Google search for “(name/model of your cellphone) bluetooth modem settings” and you should turn up plenty of leads.

In my case, with my provider being Cingular, and my Sony Walkman phone, my settings look like this:

Service Provider: Cingular Wireless
Account Name: [emailprotected]
Password: CINGULAR1
Telephone Number: *99#

(When I used my old Sony t616, the telephone number *99***2# worked.)

Now, while you are there, take a look at the options under “PPP Options”. You will probably want to leave the advanced options alone, although some recommend unchecking “Send PPP echo packets” and “Use TCP header compression”. Play with it if you like.

But under Session Options, which is the top half of that window, I like to check “Connect automatically when needed”. What this does is it causes your computer to automatically reconnect if you lose the signal while connected through your cellphone.

However, what it also does is it tries to connect you through your phone automatically whenever you open your laptop. I personally find this less of a hassle and worth not having to manually reconnect if my connection gets dropped during a session.

(Video) How To Share your Mobile Data Wirelessly to PC via WiFI Router

Finally, go to the “Bluetooth Modem” section, and select whichever modem seems closest to your phone. When I was using my Sony Ericsson t616, it was the Ericsson Infrared modem script, despite the fact that I was actually using bluetooth. And in fact for my new Nokia 6620, I use the Nokia Infrared script. If you get no results from any of them, check out Ross Barkman’s Modem Scripts and see what he has for you. I’ve never had a problem with the phones I’ve tried and the modem scripts provided by Apple.

Also uncheck “Enable error correction and compression in modem”, and “Wait for dial tone before dialing”.

One last thing which you may want to do is to go to the “Show” drop-down, and select “Network Port Configurations”. This is where you tell your computer which Internet access method to try first, second, and third, and so on. I have mine set to try my built-in wifi first, then my bluetooth connection.

That’s it! You’re all done with the set up – be sure to check “Apply now” or “Save” before closing system preferences!

Now, it could well be that at this point your set-up will just work), so go ahead and try it. It could also be that you will need to add a few settings on your phone. In the case of my t616, I had to add the same settings from the PPP preferences pane (username, password, etc.) into the data connection information on my phone. With my Nokia, it just worked without my putting anything in the phone.

Once you have this up and working, just carry your laptop with you (you do that already, don’t you?) and enjoy accessing the Internet from anywhere, with the Internet in your pocket.

(And don’t forget that if you are looking for a great phone for this, Amazon has that incredible sale on the very phone we use.How to Connect Your Computer to the Internet Using Your Cell Phone as a Wireless Internet Connection or Tethered Modem (5))

So, where is the most interesting place you’ve been while being connected and using the Internet?

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(Video) Share Internet to PC from iPhone | USB and Wireless methods

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How do I connect my computer to the internet using my cell phone? ›

Plug your charging cable into your phone, and the USB side into your laptop. Then go into your phone settings and turn on 'USB tethering'. It'll be under 'Connection & sharing' or something similar (the exact name differs between phone brands). Now wait around 30 seconds and refresh your laptop browser.

How do I use my phone as an Internet connection? ›

Turn your smartphone into a Wi-Fi hotspot.
  1. On iOS devices, go to Settings, then toggle “Personal Hotspot” on. Once you do, you'll be given a Wi-Fi password. ...
  2. On Android devices, the process can differ a little depending on your phone's model. Go to Settings, then look for a menu for networks or connections.

Can I tether my phone to my computer for internet access? ›

You can use your phone's mobile data to connect another phone, tablet, or computer to the internet. Sharing a connection this way is called tethering or using a hotspot. Some phones can share Wi-Fi connection by tethering. Most Android phones can share mobile data by Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or USB.

How do I connect my laptop to the internet without Wi-Fi? ›

How to Connect My Laptop to the Internet Anywhere?
  1. Mobile Tethering. The most readily available way to connect to the Internet on a laptop anywhere is making a hotspot for the laptop from your phone. ...
  2. 4G Mobile USB Modem. ...
  3. Satellite Internet. ...
  4. Public WiFi.
Jan 15, 2021

Can I use my cell phone as a modem? ›

Under the 'Wireless and networks' heading, select Tethering and mobile hotspot and then select USB tethering. The network icon in the taskbar should display a wired connection when it is successful. Congratulations, you have now successfully used your Android smartphone as a modem.

Can I use my mobile phone as a router? ›

For Android smartphones, enter your Settings App on your smartphone and select the “Wireless & Networks” label on your smartphone. Choose the “Tethering & Portable Hotspot” option and enter the “Portable WiFi hotspot settings”.

How do I turn my mobile data into Ethernet? ›

Connect Android to Ethernet - YouTube

What is the difference between hotspot and tethering? ›

With tethering, you can use your existing mobile phone and data plan to share a secure internet connection with another device, typically a laptop or tablet. With true hotspots, you have access to a dedicated device, like a portable Wi-Fi hotspot, that's capable of connecting to the closest cellular tower.

Is USB tethering faster than hotspot? ›

The internet speed obtained in the connected computer is faster. While the internet speed is a little slow using hotspot.

How do I tether my Android phone to my computer? ›

1. Bluetooth Tethering Android to Pc
  1. Pair The Two Devices. On your PC, go to the Bluetooth menu from the settings. ...
  2. Turn On Bluetooth Tethering On Your Phone. First, make sure your Bluetooth and mobile data are both turned on. ...
  3. Connecting Your PC.

How do I connect to the Internet without Wi-Fi? ›

To get internet without WiFi all you need is a Modem to connect to cable, DSL, or satellite for internet access. The modem may be a stand-alone device, or may have a built-in wired and/or wireless router. The router is what connects the network clients (wired or wireless) to the internet.

Can you make your own Wi-Fi? ›

To create your own Wi-Fi network, you'll need a wireless router. This is the device that will broadcast the Wi-Fi signal from your Internet modem throughout your house. Your Internet service provider (ISP) may offer you a wireless router for a small monthly fee.

How do I get my computer to connect to the internet? ›

Computer Basics: Connecting to the Internet - YouTube

Which device connects your computer to the internet? ›

A router sends info between your network and the Internet. With a wireless router, you can connect PCs to your network using radio signals instead of wires. There are several different kinds of wireless network technologies, which include 802.11a, 802.11b, 802.11g, 802.11n, 802.11ac, and 802.11ax.

How can I connect my mobile Wi-Fi to PC without password? ›

Using WPS instead of a Password
  1. Launch the “Settings” app from the Home screen.
  2. Navigate to the “Network and internet settings” section.
  3. Tap on “Wi-Fi.”
  4. Select “Additional settings.”
  5. Tap the “Connect by WPS button” option.
  6. Next, a dialog should open telling you to push the “WPS button” on the router.
Sep 3, 2022

What are the three ways to connect to internet? ›

Internet Connection Types: WiFi, Broadband, DSL, Cable.

How does a computer connect to the Internet wirelessly? ›

A computer's wireless adapter translates data into a radio signal and transmits it using an antenna. A wireless router receives the signal and decodes it. The router sends the information to the internet using a physical, wired ethernet connection.

What are the different ways to connect to the Internet? ›

In this article, we will discuss different types of internet connections.
  1. Dial-Up Connection. A dial-up connection is established between your computer and the ISP server using a modem. ...
  2. Broadband Connection. ...
  3. DSL. ...
  4. Cable. ...
  5. Satellite Connection. ...
  6. Wireless Connection. ...
  7. Cellular. ...
  8. ISDN.
Jul 25, 2022

What are 3 ways that can be used to connect computers to a network? ›

Related. Network technologies allow two or more computers to connect with each other. The most common of these technologies include Local Area Network (LAN), Wireless Area Network (WAN), the Internet via client servers and Bluetooth.

How do I connect to my modem? ›

Connect the modem power cord into an electrical outlet, then connect the other end to the modem. Connect one end of one Ethernet cable into the back of the modem, then connect the other end into the Wide Area Network (WAN) port on the router.

How do I connect my wireless router to my modem? ›

How You Can Connect A Router To Modem Wirelessly
  1. Connect your router to your modem;
  2. Not sure which is the Wide Area Network port? ...
  3. Plugin one end of an Ethernet cable to the WAN port of your router and the opposite end to the modem. ...
  4. Step Three: Download the app and connect. ...
  5. Now you can connect to the wifi network.
Jun 9, 2022

Is it possible to connect to a Wi-Fi without password? ›


Go to "Settings" menu. A drop-down menu will appear. Select "Wi-Fi." If your list of SSIDs is lengthy, scroll to the bottom and hit the "QR scan icon" on the right side of the "Add Network" row.

How can I connect my mobile Internet to Windows 10? ›

Open your phone's settings and go to Network & Internet > Hotspot & tethering (Android) or Cellular > Personal Hotspot (iPhone). turn on USB tethering (on Android) or Personal Hotspot (on iPhone) to enable. Your laptop should now be able to access the internet through your phone's mobile plan.

Where do I find my password for my Wi-Fi? ›

How to find your wifi password on an Android Phone
  1. Go to “settings” on your phone, then “wifi”.
  2. Select “saved networks” and click on your home network.
  3. Choose the share option and enter your password.
  4. A barcode will appear with the wifi password written below.


1. How to Connect Your PC to the Internet Through a Phone with Bluetooth, Wi Fi or USB Cable 📱 ↔️ 💻
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2. iPhone : Share Internet connection with Your PC using USB cable | NETVN
3. Tech Tips: How to tether a phone to a laptop.
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4. How to Tether Android Smartphone or Tablet | How to Tether Phone and Share Its Internet (Hotspot)
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