One of the most celebrated features of the new Verizon iPhone 4 is its ability to work as a mobile WiFi hotspot. When you consider that the AT&T iPhone only received the ability to tether a few months ago, the Verizon model’s personal hotspot ability is a major selling point.
Of course, like any cool technology, it’ll cost you. Before you use the Verizon iPhone as a personal hotspot for up to four devices, you’ll have to pay Verizon another $20 for the service. That will get you 2GB of shared data, and you’ll have to pay more for each additional gigabyte. Still, it’s a very cool, useful service, and if you travel a lot or if you’re out of town for a month or so, it’s a good feature to enable.
Make sure that iOS version 4.2.5 is installed. Really, there’s no way that it isn’t if your iPhone is right out of the package, but if you’ve jailbroken your Verizon iPhone or something like that, you may need to go back and reinstall this version of the operating system.
Tap on the Settings menu. In the menu, you’ll see a new area called “Personal Hotspot.” Can you guess what’s next?
Tap on Personal Hotspot. In here, you’ll be able to turn on the personal hotspot feature and you’ll also be able to give it a password. Be sure to do this right away, so that you don’t get a bunch of strangers hogging your connection in a coffeeshop and sending your cell phone bill through the roof.
Connect your computer. Open your network options and select “iPhone” from the list of choices. All you’ll have to do is enter your password and you’ll be ready to start surfing the web.
A minor issue. You should know that the personal hotspot feature can be a little problematic: if you receive a phone call while you’re using the Internet through the personal hotspot, your Internet will drop out. This is because Verizon phones can only make phone calls or use data services one at a time. Unfortunately, there’s no way around this for now, but the good news is that as soon as your call is over, your iPhone should switch the personal hotspot back on, and you shouldn’t need to reconnect with your computer.
This is only a minor annoyance, really, unless you’re downloading something big, which you really shouldn’t be doing through your cell phone’s 3G connection in the first place. Nevertheless, it’s good to know about before you start surfing.
Do you have any questions about using the personal hotspot feature of the Verizon iPhone 4? Post them in the comments section below.