Your phone’s hotspot or tethering feature can come in handy when you want internet access on your computer or tablet on the go or if your home internet goes bust. Several carriers offer data specifically for tethering. In many countries, carriers also offer the ability to hotspot for free. With so many plans supporting tethering and so many ways it can be used, we wanted to know how many of our readers are actually using this feature and when they last used it. Here’s how they voted in our poll.
When was the last time you used your phone’s hotspot?
Our survey raked in 1,560 votes at the time of writing. 52% of our readers used their phone’s hotspot/tethering feature in the same week the poll went out. That means they used it very recently compared to other respondents. It’s also a majority of the vote in our poll, showing that Android Authority readers are frequent hotspot users.
Meanwhile, 17% of the voters said they used the feature in the last few weeks, and 5% said they used it within the month.
8% of the surveyed readers haven’t used hotspot on their phones in a few months, while 5% said they last used the feature in 2021! Then there are also those that haven’t used tethering in a few years (5%) and some who have never used the option (8%).
megatomic: Every time I go into the field to work on a customer SCADA system I wind up having to hotspot to download files, get support, etc. It’s a necessity for me.
Paul: I have a taker task to turn it on whenever I connect to my car’s Bluetooth and Android turns it off if nothing connects to it. This way if I’m going on a long trip with the kids their tablets can be online
Mat Kenny: I use the hot-spot feature quite often, it helps make using various devices completely hassle-free, and it’s always worked smoothly
Chris Laarman: 1) I only have mobile plans (cord cutter). When doing something like a desktop OS upgrade, I may well use a smartphone as a mifi, to prevent this task and doing daily things (via my MiFi) to interfere with each other. 2) Fun for this Android audience: my mobile Apple devices can’t upgrade themselves directly through a SIM card, they must download the upgrade through wifi. So I must then use something else as a hotspot (or the MiFi).
Shizuma: While I picked last few years it’s a bit deceptive because of the pandemic, prior to the pandemic I used it every single weekday as I used it for internet on my tablet while at work and used a 20gb+ a month, but with working from home there’s no need since I have 300Mbps fios. I have however kept my legacy plan that has no separate cap for tethering, just my regular monthly cap since I expect that eventually it will go back to being used a lot again.
David Page: Support tablet use and smartwatch (automatically) away from home.
Lamar Taylor: A car crash and a fire took out the WiFi in my area 3 weeks apart. Used my Hotspot from my business phone and got by just fine temporarily. I’ve used my Hotspot at hotels where the free WiFi is super slow. I don’t use it daily but it’s a great feature that comes in handy when needed.
Joe Black: I use it quite often, as my “work phone” has a decent plan I do not have to pay for.
Doug Paice: I use it instead of public or work wifi of I’m connecting a personal device. Also when we’re out and I want to connect my daughter’s tablet to the net. I also just it to tether my raspberry pi when out.
I get 80GB of data total on my phone plan (Telstra, Australia) they don’t count tethering any differently than regular data, it’s all one big pool. I never get close to using it all.
Razin Keelath: Generally I have to use hotspot is when my friends ask me to share my internet. No worries🙌
Walter Kowalski: Been working at home and also have not traveled too many places during the ccp sponsored pandemic. I have completely forgot to use hotspot.
Man with no wifi: I live in a rural area in central Texas and my mobile hotspot is my only Internet access.
Jeff Schmitz: Mainly when working outside the office or my home Internet goes down.
1. Shuttling between different locations, don’t want to permanently pay wired in all.
2. On the road a lot, have a line on each major network. The ones with coverage issues tether to whichever has strong signal.
3. Windows. Until a work-class portable with built in cellular appears.
4. For a bunch of additional very cheap free lines with limited zero data.
5. Public WiFi vulnerable often terrible sometimes not free.
coal686: I’m on Magenta Max, but my wife loves Google Fi. Since they charge for data and I get 40GB per month of hotspot, she tethers on my data when we’re together.
Jeffrey Gouse: I’m on Verizon’s 5G Get More plan, so I get 50GB of 4G/5G hotspot data per month (before throttling). I currently use it at work on a daily basis. I work in an autistic support classroom with one specific student, and it’s honestly easier and less frustrating–for both of us–to use Google Classroom on my near-premium grade Chromebook rather than the school district-issued budget Chromebook.
Resuna: Every time I go to a restaurant with my wife so I can play words-with-friends with her on my tablet.