How to set up mobile hotspot on your Android phone

Set up your mobile hotspot

We’ll be using a Galaxy S23+ for this guide, but the process on your phone is likely going to be very similar. You’re going to want to head to the Settings of your phone and find your mobile hotspot options. This is typically categorized under the data or connections entry, although your phone may have a specific entry for just mobile hotspot settings.

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Image credit: Jared Peters/TalkAndroid

You should see a toggle button to turn on your hotspot, which technically could be the end of our guide. You’ll probably want to change some things though, unless you think you can guess the randomly generated password that most hotspots start with.

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Image credit: Jared Peters/TalkAndroid

Changing your hotspot settings

There are a ton of things you can tweak about your hotspot. Many phones have the options of changing how you share your data connection, such as creating a wireless hotspot or sharing connection via Bluetooth, USB, or Ethernet, which would be better for a more specialized setup where you were only connecting one device through your phone. A hardwired USB or Ethernet tether would be slightly faster than a wireless connection, too. You probably didn’t bring an Ethernet cable to the airport with you, but this option works well for a laptop that has a USB-C connection.

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Image credit: Jared Peters/TalkAndroid

Tapping your mobile hotspot options will show you several other things you can change, the biggest of which will be the password. You’ll want to keep a secure password, but changing it to something that you know and remember makes sense. Additionally, you can change what kind of security your hotspot uses (WPA-2 vs WPA-3, for example) and which band it will try to prioritize. 5GHz is faster, but 2.4GHz is a little more widely compatible and might be necessary to use on older or less advanced devices trying to connect.

You can also track how much mobile hotspot data you’ve used and access any phone-specific features here. Samsung’s newer phones have an option for one-time passwords, for example, which sets up a temporary password that will reset when you toggle your hotspot on and off. Pretty useful if you’re sharing your connection with someone that you don’t want repeated access to your hotspot.

Do keep in mind that while nearly every Android phone on the market supports native mobile hotspot features, actually being able to share your connection is typically tied to your phone plan. Not all plans will support tethering, so if you’ve followed this guide and are still having issues, make sure to check with your carrier and find out if your plan allows you to do this in the first place.

Happy hotspotting.

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