How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

USB cable to connect your PC and smartphone. For Windows 10 and beyond, USB tethering does not require any driver or application to be installed, however, they were required in the older versions of Windows. Similarly, for Ubuntu version 14.04 LTS.

If you want to share mobile data via USB tethering, you have to turn on your mobile data during the process of tethering through a USB cable.

Does Tethering Use Data or Hotspot?

It is important to know that USB tethering does not use any hotspot data. The process of sharing mobile internet via USB cable is known as tethering. It should be noted that it does not consume any hotspot data, but uses the mobile phone’s general data connection for internet access.

However, you should know that if you use a USB cable to connect your laptop or any other computer, you will be able to access the internet from this device using the mobile data connection. On the other hand, if you are using Wi-Fi for tethering, the hotspot might be consumed as it uses wireless internet connectivity.

Does Bluetooth Tethering Use Hotspot Data?

Just like USB tethering, the Bluetooth tethering does not rely on any hotspot data. You can use your Bluetooth connectivity to share internet connection with other devices like PC or laptop.

So, now let’s assume that you are having Bluetooth tethering enabled with your smartphone and another device connected to your PC via Bluetooth. It should be noted that sharing data through Bluetooth consumes data from the mobile phone’s general internet connection, rather than hotspot data.

How To Enable USB Tethering?

Well, there are two different ways to enable your PC or laptop for USB tethering.

Method 1: Using Phone Setting

The first way is by using the Settings panel on your smartphone. The process of enabling USB tethering via Settings is described below:

1. Open the Settings panel on your phone.

2. Tap “More connection settings” option to expand the menu.

3. Select “Tethering and portable hotspot” option under the Internet connection section.

4. Enable the USB tethering option.

5. Choose the USB connection option from “Portable Wi-Fi hotspot” drop down menu to share mobile data with other devices.

6. Enter the name of your device in “Network SSID” option to identify your device when other devices are trying to connect through Bluetooth.

7. Enter the password in “Password” field to secure your device from unauthorized access.

Method 2: Using Connectify Software

The second way to enable your device for USB tethering is by using the Connectify software. The process of enabling USB tethering via Connectify software is described below:

1. Download and install the Connectify software on your PC.

2. Launch the Connectify software on your desktop or laptop.

3. Click on the “Wi-Fi Hotspot” button to activate the software.

4. Select USB tethering option from the options menu to enable USB tethering.

5. Check the “Automatically share this connection with your hotspot devices” option to connect other devices easily.

6. You can also check the “Share your connection from:” option to enable internet sharing through a wired Ethernet connection.

7. Select the SSID name which you want to share with other devices.

8. Enter the password in “Password” field, if required.

9. Click on the “Start Hotspot” button and wait for a while to activate your hotspot.

That’s it. Now you can access the internet from your device via USB tethering.

Does USB Tethering Use More Data Than Hotspot?

USB tethering vs hotspot, which one is faster? Which one is better in terms of consuming less mobile data and battery?

Well, hotspots and USB tethering, both are different types of internet sharing techniques. They both have pros and cons, so let us see which option is better in terms of speed and data consumption.

Both are technologies of the modern digital era, enabling different devices to connect and share internet data. However, they are quite different in many regards.

Let’s compare these technologies to find out which one is better than the other;

  • USB tethering is a very fast process and requires a high-speed connection. A hotspot is comparatively slower in terms of internet sharing and requires a medium internet connection.
  • The battery consumption is low in the case of USB tethering, whereas, the hotspot consumes more battery.
  • USB tethering is simply a connection between different devices, like smartphones, tablets, PC or laptops, through a USB cable. Whereas, hotspots provide internet through wireless access points. The access point is linked to the gateway or router. These days, hotspots are often found in almost all public places.
  • Multiple devices can access the hotspot easily, while tethering is only limited to few devices, since it may require the installation of software or drive for connecting to a device.
  • Does USB tethering use more data than hotspot? No, not at all, the consumption of data by hotspot is very high as compared to USB tethering which uses less data.

So, whether you talk about hotspot or USB tethering, both of them are modern technologies, both having pros and cons. However, more people prefer hotspots over tethering as almost every device nowadays, is a Wi-Fi device. In case, you have to tether only one device, USB tethering is preferred because it is a fast and more reliable method.

This is the most efficient way to tether your Android smartphone to your router or Ethernet switch. This set up is also advisable if you’re connecting to a public internet or if your connection is limited to only your Android. This article shows you the steps to do this.

  • Internal Wi-Fi card, External Wi-Fi USB adapter (optional).
  • Internal Ethernet card, External Ethernet USB adapter (optional).

Step 1: Purchase Connectify Hotspot PRO or MAX from the Connectify website. While there is a free trial version of Connectify Hotspot, sharing 3G/4G or Ethernet connections as WiFi is only available in the PRO and MAX versions.

Step 2: There are several ways to tether or share your Android connection to your computer. Please see these options below.

Step 3. Connect the Ethernet cable from your computer to the WAN port of the router (or in any port if you’re using an ethernet switch).

Step 4. Open Connectify Hotspot and choose Wired Router.

Step 5: Make sure your Android connection (USB, WiFi, or PDANet+) is selected from the ‘Internet to Share’ dropdown. Icons next to each adapter tell you what kind of Internet connection you’re selecting.

Step 6: Choose Routed under Network Access. Learn more about the difference between Routed and Bridged mode by clicking this LINK.

Step 7: Share Over should be set to your Ethernet Adapter.

Optional: Choose the ‘Ad Blocker‘ option as this feature will save you a lot of data. Learn more about the universal ad blocker in Connectify Hotspot.

Step 8: Click the ‘Start Hotspot’ button to begin sharing your Internet connection with your router.

How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

Thanks for the feedback There was a problem submitting your feedback. Please try again later.

Maybe you’ve gone to a café without WiFi and you need to connect your mobile phone’s data to your PC. Or perhaps, you’ve gone out with your friend and they need to use your mobile data to send someone a message. Whatever the case may be, sharing your mobile’s data to other devices can be very useful at times.

In this article from oneHOWTO, we are going to explain three different ways of sharing your mobile data. We’ll include photos for an easy step-by-step guide. Continue reading to learn how to share your your mobile data with or without Hotspot, as well as with WiFi Hotspot.

How to share mobile data

The mobile data you have on your Android or iPhone can be shared with different devices. This includes other phones, tablets, computers or any other device that can connect to the internet. There are three ways you can share your mobile data: WiFi Hotspot, Bluetooth and USB tethering. Below, we will guide you through all three options.

It’s important to note that our photos are from a Google 3a (Android) phone. The exact display may vary depending on the model and version of your phone. Nevertheless, these three methods work on both Android and iPhone.

Share mobile data with WiFi Hotspot

The easiest way of sharing your mobile data with other devices is through WiFi Hotspot. This option will allow you to connect with up to ten devices at the same time. To share your mobile data through a WiFi Hotspot, follow these instructions:

  1. Open the “Settings” application that appears on the screen or in the terminal’s main menu.
  2. Access “Networks and Internet”.
  3. Select “WiFi Zone / Connection Sharing”.
  4. Tap on the option “WiFi access point / WiFi Hotspot” and activate it.
  5. Choose a Hotspot name and password (optional).
  6. Now connect the other device. To do this you have to open the list of WiFi options, choose the name of the access point from the other smartphone, enter the password (if chosen) and tap on “connect”.

How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

Share mobile data through Bluetooth

  1. Open phone “Settings” on the home screen or in the menu.
  2. Access “Networks and Internet”.
  3. Choose “WiFi Zone / Connection Sharing”.
  4. Select “Share via Bluetooth”.

How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

Share data with USB tethering

This way of sharing mobile data is also very simple. You just have to connect the two terminals with a USB cable. Follow these simple steps:

  1. Connect your phone to your PC or other device using a USB chord.
  2. Open phone “Settings” on the home screen or in the menu.
  3. Access “Networks and Internet”.
  4. Choose “WiFi Zone / Connection Sharing”.
  5. Select “USB tethering”.

How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

FAQs about sharing mobile data

When talking about how to share mobile data from one mobile to another both on an iOS or Android, it’s important to take into account a number of factors. These are the main ones:

  • Rates: there are operators that limit the shared connection, do not allow it or apply an additional charge to the contracted rate. It’s important to check in advance, especially if terminals are going to be connected frequently.
  • Mac computers: Mac computers can also function as a wireless Hotspot.
  • Bluetooth: This type of connection allows data to be shared through PCs and devices from other manufacturers.

With this oneHOWTO article, we hope that you’ve been able to successfully share you mobile data. There may be variations due to the manufacturer, the operating system and model. However, nowadays all phones offer these three ways to share your mobile data. If you have any questions, consult the manufacturer’s instructions or go to your operator.

If you were interested in this article, you may also be interested in:

If you want to read similar articles to How to Share Mobile Data With and Without Hotspot, we recommend you visit our Electronics category.

Why Do I Need Wireless Broadband? What is a portable WiFi hotspot? Can’t I Just Tether My Phone?

Today’s business is conducted on the go. Teams are increasingly exploring remote working options. Engineers need to be on site to direct contractors and suppliers. Sales, services and support teams often travel to customer sites. Marketing teams generate leads at trade shows and conferences. Small businesses need an affordable, flexible connectivity solution. Pop-up stores open up new markets on the fly. Impromptu meetings pop up in the local coffee shop. All need fast, reliable and secure Internet connectivity wherever business takes them.

A common belief that all internet connections are safe and reliable is not the case. Should employees just log on to a guest network, connect to public WiFi or tether off someone’s personal phone? Not a good idea, and we will tell you the best, most reliable options for your company.

It may seem like there’s always a way to connect, but each of these options have their downsides and risks. For ultimate flexibility and reliability, your business can bring high-speed wireless network to employees, with the AT&T high speed wireless data network.

In this guide, you will learn:

How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explainedHow to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

What is AT&T Wireless Broadband?

What is phone tethering?

What are portable WiFi hotspot devices?

What are some advantages of mobile hotspots over tethering for businesses that need mobile internet connectivity?

How does wireless broadband interact with other business Internet services?

The bottom line

  • Phone tethering and wireless broadband are both good options for sharing Internet connections with your workforce. Each one has its ideal business cases.
  • Tethering may be ideal when business demands a simple connection through a single device.
  • AT&T wireless broadband delivered through a portable WiFi hotspot device ensures fast, reliable and secure Internet connections for your company — allowing teams to work productively wherever business take them.

Get the additional bandwidth you need to run your most important business and cloud-based applications.

Includes 10GB AT&T Business Fast Track

Includes 15GB AT&T Business Fast Track

Includes 30GB AT&T Business Fast Track

Includes 50GB AT&T Business Fast Track

For all data usage on the Essentials plan, or after the applicable plan usage threshold (75GB for the up to 12 Mbps plan, 100 GB for the up to 25 Mbps plan, 125GB for the up to 50 Mbps plan, or 175GB for the up to 100 Mbps plan), AT&T may temporarily slow data speeds if the network is busy.

Advertised monthly pricing is only for new plans currently offered to customers as of July 30, 2021. Rates above do not reflect retired plans available prior to that date. What you will see on your bill: Advertised monthly pricing includes (a) a monthly plan charge for data service ($50, 60, $85, $170 or $210, depending on the plan), (b) a monthly device access charge ($20) for access to such service, and (c) a $5 monthly discount when enrolled in both Autopay & paperless billing, which starts within 2 bills after enrollment.

Data throughput speeds are capped at a maximum available data speed, which may not provide you with the highest speed available in a location at a specific point in time. Each plan’s "up to" data speed is not guaranteed to be your actual speed. Actual speeds vary and may be affected by a number of factors, including your proximity to a cell site, the capacity of the cell site, the number of other users connected to the same cell site, the surrounding terrain, AT&T network management practices, the applications you use, and your in-building coverage.

Plans are not intended as a substitute for consumer internet services. Accordingly, plans do not allow access to entertainment and other non-business websites that offer video or audio streaming services & may not be used for entertainment or surveillance video streaming, audio streaming, web hosting, or public or guest Wi-Fi.

1 Available only to small business customers with an AT&T Mobile Business Agreement or qualified legacy small business contract.

2 Data throughput speeds of up to 50 Mbps and up to 100 Mbps requires a wireless router with a Category 18 or higher modem and use enhanced AT&T 4G LTE-Advanced service or 5G/5G+ service is available.

by How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explainedN.L Tayoh March 29, 2020, 4:59 pm 2.7k Views 0 Votes 0 Comments

On this page today, we a going to explain to you how to share an Android VPN connection via Hotspot without root access. Normally, most Apps that gives you the possibility to share your Android VPN connection have support for Hotspot sharing with root access. But what if you do not want to void the warranty of your device just to share your VPN connection? Well, there is a walkaround for this.

Vous pouvez également lire cet article en français.

We shared a guide on how to share your Android VPN connection via different ways with the Hotspot include. But the method we explained there for sharing through WiFi Hotspot required root. So, this guide should help those who want to share their VPN connection without tempering their Android device.

What is required for this to work?

It may seem difficult for some to figure out how, but its pretty simple. Your VPN connection works well on your Android but when shared, the other devices cannot browse. This is simply because the WiFi Hotspot isn’t sharing the VPN connection, but the default connection of your Android.

And the VPN working on your device is making use of a different proxy address and port than the one your normal connection will use. So, when you share your connection to another device, for it to work, the device needs to be tunnelling through the IP address and port via which the VPN is channelling the connection.

To achieve this, we can make use of another VPN app — HTTP Injector. This free tunnel app for Android comes with a very stunning tool. The Hotshare tethering tool incorporated in HTTP Injector makes it possible for you to share the VPN connection.

How does the HTTP Injector Hotshare tool work?

Note that you won’t be connecting the HTTP Injector VPN if it isn’t the VPN which you are using for browsing. You only need to make use of the Hotshare tool if you are using a different VPN for your connection.

Once your VPN is connected, you simply need to launch the Hotshare tool. But after this, simply connecting to the Hotspot created won’t grant you access to the VPN connection. The Hotshare tool will equally display the IP and port through which your VPN is channelling the internet. So, you will need to make use of this IP Address and port to configure other devices to see your VPN connection.

Sharing your Android VPN connection via Hotspot Without root

If you are to share the VPN connection you are using on a device say A to another B, you have to follow these steps;

Creating a VPN Hotspot connection

How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

Share and Android VPN connection via Hotspot without root

  • Connect the VPN app you use for browsing. In my case, I am using Anonytun VPN.
  • Now launch HTTP Injector and click on the “Tool” tab.
  • Next, click on “Tethering Tools”.
  • Choose the first option which is “Hotshare”.
  • Start WiFi Hotspot and then Hotshare. When Hotshare is on, you will then see an IP and a port displayed at the top. We will be needing this.

Connecting to the VPN connection

To connect to the VPN connection and have access to the internet, you will need to connect through the IP address and port. Follow the steps below to set thing working.

If Your second device is an Android

How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

  1. Access WiFi from settings. Select the Wi-Fi name that you want to connect to.
  2. Click on it, enter the password if protected and then scroll down and click on “Advanced options”.
  3. You should see “Proxy” set to “none”.
  4. Dropdown for Proxy select “Manual” and enter:
    • Proxy hostname:
    • Proxy port: 44355
  5. Click “Save” to save and then connect to the Wi-Fi
  6. You will now have access to the VPN connection from your other Android device.

If the second device is a Windows computer.

  • Go to Control Panel > Network and Internet > Internet Options.
  • Click the “Connections” tab at the top of the Internet Options window. Click the “LAN Settings” button at the bottom of the window.
  • Check “Use a proxy server for your LAN” and enter the network address and port of the proxy as follows:
    • Server: (If you are using repeater use
    • Port: 44355

    Connect iPhone/iPad

    1. Tap on the Settings app. When the Settings app loads, you will be at the General Settings category.
    2. Tap on the Wi-Fi settings category and you will be at a screen as shown below.
    3. Tap on the “icon” next to the Wi-Fi network to access the specific settings of the wireless connection.
    4. Tap on the Manual button and fill in the fields under HTTP Proxy as follows:
      • Server: (If you are using repeater use
      • Port: 44355
    5. When you are done setting up your proxy server, tap on the Wi-Fi Networks button and then go back to your Home screen to start enjoying the internet access.

    The bottom line

    There are probably other apps which can help you accomplish this. But using HTTP injector is very easy and simple. And more to that it’s completely free.

    While Wi-Fi hotspots seem to be popping up everywhere, at times Ethernet can still be the best (or only) option. Often, you’ll find hotel room Wi-Fi is weak based on distance to the router, and you might want to use the direct, in-room Ethernet connection instead. But, how can you get your iPad, Kindle, smartphones and other Wi-Fi-only devices onto the hotel’s Ethernet connection?

    With Connectify Hotspot installed on your PC laptop, you can turn your computer into a Wi-Fi hotspot and easily share Internet from your wired Ethernet as WiFi. With just a few clicks, iPhones and other mobile devices can get online, no matter where you are.

    Start a Connectify Hotspot

    Step 1: Download and install Connectify Hotspot .

    Step 2: Make sure your Ethernet connection is selected from the ‘Internet to Share’ dropdown. Icons next to each adapter tell you what kind of Internet connection you’re selecting.

    How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

    Step 3: Give your hotspot a name (SSID) and password. The hotspot name is the network name that other devices will see and connect to using your unique password. Your Connectify Hotspot is a real, working hotspot that you use just like any other wireless network.

    Step 4: Click the ‘Start Hotspot’ button to begin sharing your Ethernet Internet connection with your iPad and other Wi-Fi-enabled devices.

    Connect your Wi-Fi-only Devices

    Step 1: Once the list of available Wi-Fi networks populates on your mobile device, you should see your Connectify Hotspot’s SSID broadcasting the Ethernet network. Connect to that network.

    Step 2: You will be prompted for the password that you gave your Connectify Hotspot. Enter your password to join the network.

    How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

    Getting your smartphone or other Wi-Fi-only devices onto Ethernet is simple with Connectify Hotspot.

    Thanks for the feedback There was a problem submitting your feedback. Please try again later.

    We’ve all been there… you want to use your laptop but are unable to access any secure public Wi-Fi. Or, maybe your friend has run of data and needs to find an urgent online booking reference – and there are no public Wi-Fi networks in sight.

    Well, luckily, many smartphones today allow you to 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. When you use a Personal Hotspot, your smartphone acts like a wireless router for the other devices, transmitting and receiving data for these devices.

    To find your hotspot on an iPhone:

    1. Open your phone’s Settings app.
    2. Tap Personal Hotspot.
    3. On the Personal Hotspot screen, turn on the Personal Hotspot toggle switch.
    4. Take note of the Wi-Fi Password. You’ll use this to connect other devices to this hotspot.

    How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

    To find your hotspot on an Android:

    1. Open your phone’s Settings app.
    2. Tap Network and Internet > Hotspot and tethering > Wi-Fi hotspot.
    3. Turn on Wi-Fi hotspot.
    4. To see or change a hotspot setting, such as the name or password, tap it. If needed, first tap Set up Wi-Fi hotspot.

    How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

    Please note that to use a personal hotspot on an iPhone your phone must be running iOS 4.3 or higher and you will need to have an iPhone 4 or later model.

    Once you have turned on your mobile hotspot the next step is to connect the other device. This is done in a very similar way on both iOS and Android devices.

    To connect an iPad, iPod touch, or another iPhone to your hotspot:

    1. Go to Settings > Wi-Fi, then tap the name of the iPhone or iPad providing the Personal Hotspot.
    2. If you have created a password for your hotspot, which we highly recommend, the other device will be asked to type in this password to their device.
    3. Typing in the correct password should then connect the two devices.

    To connect your laptop simply go straight to the Wi-Fi symbol and follow the steps above.

    When other devices are connected to your iPhone hotspot, a blue bar will appear at the top of the iPhone screen and on the lock screen. On models running iOS 7 and above, the blue bar shows a number next to a lock or an interlocking loops icon – this indicates how many devices are connected to the phone.

    How to share your smartphone’s internet connection hotspots and tethering explained

    To connect an Android to your hotspot:

    1. On the device, open that device’s list of Wi-Fi options.
    2. Pick your phone’s hotspot name.
    3. Enter your phone’s hotspot password.
    4. Click Connect.

    You can share your phone’s mobile data with up to 10 other devices via a Wi-Fi hotspot but don’t forget to turn it off once you are finished to avoid using unnecessary data. As you need to be able to access your network data to use your hotspot, you should also be aware that you cannot use this feature when your phone is in airplane mode.

    All data used by devices connected to your hotspot counts against your data plan, so be careful if your data plan is small. It is also worth noting that in many cases you will not be able to use your mobile hotspot abroad even if you have international data roaming as part of your plan. This is to prevent multiple people in a group using the hotspot instead of buying an international roaming plan.

    Why is it important to create a secure password for your hotspot?

    Using a password to protect your portable hotspot saves you from situations where your internet bandwidth gets stolen by other devices and users. You don’t want to find that all your data for the month has run out because someone was streaming videos using your hotspot. It also restricts the users who can use this hotspot. Once you have given a friend of family member the password it is also a good idea to change it, as once they have the hotspot password, they will be able to connect to your hotspot anytime (as long as you have the toggle set to on).

    We hope you found this post useful. If you would like more information on similar topics, you can read some other helpful posts here:

    Smartphone Mobile HotSpot (SMHS) – also referred to as Wi-Fi Sharing or tethering – lets you securely share your device’s Internet connection with up to 10 Wi-Fi-enabled devices on T-Mobile’s high-speed nationwide network. If you want a plan with SMHS – check our Magenta or Magenta MAX​ plans.

    On this page:

    Use SMHS

    You’ll need the following to use SMHS on your device

    • Wi-Fi-enabled or Bluetooth-enabled device
    • A plan that includes SMHS. Most plans include it, see Cost and eligibility.
    • Coverage as SMHS only works in 4G and 4G LTE coverage: View our coverage map.

    Turn on and start using

    1. On your SMHS device, turn on Personal Hotspot or Wi-Fi Sharing (SMHS).
      • Steps for turning SMHS on vary by device. and look in the Connections & Network drawer for device-specific steps.
    2. On the device you want to share data with, connect to the mobile hotspot network you just turned on.

    If you don’t want to use Wi-Fi, you can use a USB cable to connect to other devices (additional software and setup may be required on your device — you can check the Devices page for steps).

    Check SMHS amount & usage

      Shows you how much SMHS is included with your plan. This appears with your data & add-ons. ​Helps you view how much SMHS you’ve used.


    Cost and eligibility

    • SMHS is included with Magenta, ONE Plan, and Simple Choice plans.
    • The price varies depending on the data allotment of your plan, such as 5 GB with our Magenta or Magenta MAX plan with 40 GB.
    • You can add more high speed data if you need to. Use My T-Mobile or the T-Mobile app to view available options.
    • A data feature is required on your line for SMHS to function.

    What’s Smartphone Mobile Hotspot (SMHS)?

    • SMHS lets you share your phone, tablet, or Wi-Fi Hotspot’s high-speed data with other Wi-Fi enabled or tethered devices.
    • You can share your Internet connection with up to 10 devices.
    • While connected to SMHS you can still make and receive calls and texts on your phone.
    • SMHS on your device is different from location hotspots, like the Wi-Fi you connect to at a coffee shop or airport, and hotspot devices, like the devices sold by T-Mobile.

    Additional details

    • For Simple Choice customers, once you reach your high-speed data allotment, your SMHS and on-device data speed is reduced to 2G speeds.
    • Customers with a Simple Choice unlimited plan will have their SMHS speeds reduced after using 14 GB of mobile hotspot data. In either case, your data won’t stop — you’ll just experience slower speeds until the end of your billing cycle.

    On all T-Mobile plans, during congestion, the small fraction of customers using >50GB/mo. may notice reduced speeds until next bill cycle due to data prioritization.

    Unfortunately, you cannot share a VPN connection over an Android hotspot unless you possess advanced technical knowledge or a “rooted” device.

    Why you can’t share your Android’s VPN connection over a hotspot

    Users have written to us asking if they:

    1. Connect their Android device to a VPN
    2. Enable the hotspot on their Android
    3. Connect another device to the hotspot

    Will the VPN protect the second device’s connection?

    The answer is no, this will not work. The Android operating system (OS) prevents other devices from sharing its VPN tunnel. If you connect your Android device to a VPN and then share its Internet connection to another device with a hotspot, the other device will not be routed through the same VPN tunnel as your Android device. Instead, it will use your native ISP connection.

    The Android OS prevents your Android device from sharing its VPN tunnel with other devices.

    While sharing a VPN connection over a hotspot is technically possible, it involves making modifications to the Android OS. You will need to have a rooted Android device and be a tech-savvy user. You can also share your VPN connection through a hotspot by using specific third-party applications designed to allow VPN tethering, but most of them will also require root access to the Android OS.

    What is a rooted device?

    For security reasons, the Android OS has certain system limitations. To “root” an Android device means to gain privileged access to the core of its OS and modify these limitations. If you root an Android, you can also change certain functionalities via the software code (which is mostly Linux). Furthermore, by rooting your device, you can install software that you normally wouldn’t be able to with a stock Android OS.

    However, the average Android use should not root their device. Most of the OS restrictions that you have on your Android are there for security reasons.

    By rooting your device, you open all of the “gates” to gain full access to the Android software code. However, those “gates” will be open for unwelcome visitors as well. If you do not have an advanced understanding of what you are doing, and you modify the code by following online guides, you could damage your phone or expose it — and your data — to hackers.

    It is also important to note that some countries and mobile companies consider rooting illegal. Also, rooting your device will almost always void its warranty. There are numerous online guides on how to root your Android phone, but ProtonVPN advises you take extreme caution before proceeding. Do not consider rooting your device unless you are a tech-savvy user.