Before I purchased my Nexus S, I was sure that I had heard/read somewhere that it can natively (ie: without rooting the device) provide mobile hotspot tethering to other devices – ie: set it up so that other devices, like my laptop, iPod Touch or iPad, can connect to it as a hotspot, to share my Rogers 3G data account with all my non-3G, Wi-Fi enable devices.
When I purchased the Nexus S at the local Rogers store a couple weeks ago the sales people assured me that this was not possible –that I’d have to pay Rogers a separate, extra $5 fee each month to turn tethering on. Turns out the Rogers guys were wrong – at least in the case of the Nexus S. No doubt this is true for all other non-Nexus branded Android devices. I bought the Nexus S primarily because it is a stock Google Android phone with no carrier-futzing limiting what it can do.
Despite being told it wouldn’t work, I got around to testing it out today. I set up a portable hotspot on my Nexus S called ‘Dale’s Android Hotspot’ – see instructions below. I turned on my iPad, opened the Wi-Fi settings and, voila, it saw the ‘Dale’s Android Hotspot’ (see image on the right). I typed in the password, fired up mobile Safari, and had full Internet access through my Nexus S hot-spot. Email worked too. Wonderful!
This means that when I’m out and about with my laptop or iPad, I can access the Internet from anywhere I can get 3G access (subject, of course, to Rogers wireless data caps and overage fees). Heck, I can even use this hotspot to connect my now SIM-less iPhone 3GS to the Internet.
I’m very happy about this. I’m love’n my Nexus S more and more every day!!
How to Setup the Nexus S as a Portable hotspot:
- Go to the Android’s Settings screen
- Select ‘Wireless & networks’
- Select ‘Tethering & Portable hotspot’
- Click the checkbox beside the ‘Portable Wi-fi hotspot’
- Click on the ‘Portable Wi-Fi hotspot settings’ item
- Click on the ‘Configure Wi-Fi hotspot’ item
- Name the hotspot in the ‘Network SSID field’ – I named mine ‘Dale’s Android Hotspot’
- On the security pull-down menu select ‘WPA2 PSK’
- Type in your desired hotspot password
- Click ‘Save’
That’s it. Now turn on your iPad, iPod touch, laptop, whatever, search for the named hotspot, type in the password and you are off to the tethered races.