Turn your Samsung Galaxy S4 into a wifi hotspot to share internet with your laptop wirelessly

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Have you ever wanted to browse the web on your Laptop or Tablet but couldn't because there was no WiFi signal around? If you have a Samsung Galaxy S4, you're in luck: through a process called tethering, you can create a WiFi network using your phone as a wireless router.

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There are several important things to remember when tethering. Be sure to read the Tips Tricks & Warnings section after you read through the rest of the guide.

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Turning A Samsung Galaxy S4 Into a WiFi Hotspot

Using your Samsung Galaxy S4 for tethering consists of three major steps: configuring your phone's wireless hotspot, activating the hotspot so your phone will push a signal out, and connecting your devices to the newly-activated hotspot.

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Configuring a WiFi Hotspot on the Samsung Galaxy S4

  1. 1
    Go to your Galaxy S4's Home screen by pressing the Home button.
    HOME MENU press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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  2. 2
    From your Home screen, drag the notification bar from the top of the screen to the bottom.
    This will open your notification panel.
    NOTIFICATION PANEL press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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  3. 3
    From the notification panel, tap on the Settings icon to open the Settings app.
    Settings icon press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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  4. 4
    Within the Settings app, tap on the Connections tab.
    Settings connection TAB button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
    CONNECTION PANEL press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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  5. 5
    In the Connections tab, tap on More Networks to show the Wireless and Networks page.
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  6. 6
    From the Wireless and Networks page, tap the Tethering and Portable Hotspot panel.
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  7. 7
    From the Tethering and Portable Hotspot screen, tap on Portable WiFi Hotspot.
    Portable wifi hotpost press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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  8. 8
    You will be taken to the welcome page.
    Take a second to read through the descriptions. After you've read them, tap the Configure button (lower-right part of the screen) to start configuring your WiFi hotspot.
    Configre hotpost press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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  9. 9
    In the Configure menu, type your desired Network SSID.
    The SSID will be your network's name; you can name it anything you'd like.
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  10. 10
    In the same menu, under Security, you can choose the kind of security you want for your network.
    Pick one of the options, and be sure to set (and remember!) a secure password.
    SECURITY tethering and portable hotpost press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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  11. 11
    Double-check your SSID and security settings, and tap the Save button when you are done.
    You have now successfully configured your phone to share its internet connection via WiFi.
    SAVE tethering and portable hotpost press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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Activate a WiFi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4

After configuring your WiFi Hotspot settings, you can follow these steps to activate a Samsung Galaxy S4 WiFi hotspot.

  1. 1
    Go to your S4's Home Menu by pressing the Home button.
    This is the rectangular button located on the lower-middle part of the front of your Samsung Galaxy S4.
    HOME MENU press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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  2. 2
    From your Home Menu, drag the notification bar from the top of the screen to the bottom.
    This will open your notification panel.
    NOTIFICATION PANEL press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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  3. 3
    From the notification panel, tap on the Settings icon to open the Settings Menu.
    Settings icon press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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  4. 4
    Within the Settings Menu, tap on the "Connections" tab.
    Settings connection TAB button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
    CONNECTION PANEL press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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  5. 5
    From the Connections tab, tap on "More Networks" to show the "Wireless and Networks" page.
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  6. 6
    From the Wireless and Networks page, tap on "Tethering and Portable Hotspot."
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  7. 7
    Tap on the switch to the right of "Portable WiFi Hotspot" to turn your hotspot on.
    The switch will turn from gray to green, indicating the WiFi hotspot is turned on. Your phone is now ready to share its internet connection via WiFi.
    Turn on hotspot tethering and portable hotpost press home button- Configure Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot on Samsung Galaxy S4.PNG
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Connect to a Samsung Galaxy S4's WiFi Hotspot

After setting up and turning on your Galaxy S4's hotspot, you'll want to connect your devices to the network. Follow the steps below to do just that:

  1. 1
    Turn on your Laptop or Tablet's WiFi.
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  2. 2
    Navigate to your device's list of available WiFi networks.
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  3. 3
    A list of available WiFi networks will appear.
    Find the name you gave to your Galaxy S4's network and open it. If you have set a password for the hotspot, enter it when prompted.
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  4. 4
    Repeat the steps above for any additional devices you wish to connect to your new hotspot.
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Hide the device

If you wish to hide your network from view while you're in public or when you just don't want the network to show up for anyone around you, just tap Hide My Device and then Save. The network will still exist, but it won't appear in the list of WiFi networks on any device nearby.

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Optional: Limit access to specific devices only

It is possible to limit access to your hotspot to specific devices' MAC addresses. A MAC (Media Access Control) address is a unique identity code assigned to laptops, tablets, and other WiFi connected devices. Without enabling MAC filtering, any device with your network's password can connect to it. The simple guide below will show you how to allow access only to approved MAC addresses.

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  1. 1
    Tap the name of your wireless hotspot.
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  2. 2
    Change the connection mode to Only allowed devices.
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  3. 3
    Tap the Allowed devices button at the bottom-left corner of the screen.
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  4. 4
    Tap the plus sign in the upper right corner of the screen.
    From here, you can add the MAC address for the device you want to be able to connect to your hotspot. Repeat each step for each new device.
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Tips Tricks & Warnings

  • Tethering will drain your battery quickly. You may want to keep your phone plugged into its charger while you're tethering so it doesn't die, and you'll want to make sure you turn tethering off when you're done using it.
  • The data you use while tethering will count against your data plan. Be sure to watch your data usage carefully so you won't be charged with overages by your cell phone carrier.
  • Set a password! If your network doesn't have a password, anyone within the network's range will be able to connect and browse the web.

Questions and Answers

How do I set up my Sprint Samsung Galaxy S4's hotspot?

Sprint requires that you pay a monthly fee to use your Samsung Galaxy S4 as a WiFi hotspot. Call Sprint's customer service line or visit your local Sprint store to sign up for a tethering plan that fits your needs. Once you've signed up, just follow the same steps listed here to turn your WiFi hotspot on.

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See more questions like this: How do I add Allowed devices on my S4

My hotspot configuration is okay on the phone but my computer is unable to detect this hotspot?

If your computer doesn't have a WiFi chip or card, you won't be able to detect the network. You can buy a WiFi dongle that allows your computer to connect to a WiFi network, though. You can buy one from PC World, eBay, or Amazon.

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How do I turn on the WiFi hotspot to connect my computer to my phone?

I have Verizon and my phone does not have what appears in the images in this article.

Do you have the Samsung Galaxy S4 or a similar Android phone? This VisiHow article is for the Samsung Galaxy S4; if you have an iPhone, a Windows Phone, or an Android from from another manufacturer like HTC or LG, your phone will look different and the instructions will vary.

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See more questions like this: MAC address question - WiFi hotspot won't allow full access to internet

How can I get a free hotspot without paying Sprint for it?

Sprint said I had to pay for a hotspot, but I don't want to.

Unfortunately, you need to pay Sprint for tethering. Using a free tethering application is against the Terms of Service you signed for in your contract and will result in termination of your service and possible fees.

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See more questions like this: How do I turn on WiFi without paying for it through sprint

Can a wireless hotspot be done without paying Sprint?

I need help to see if I can get it done with Sprint knowing or getting any monthly charges.

As stated above, you need to pay Sprint for tethering. Using a free tethering application is against the Terms of Service you signed for in your contract and will result in termination of your service and possible fees.

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See more questions like this: I can not find the wireless and networks page under more networks?

Turning on Hotspot doesn't work on Sprint. Why?

If you don't pay Sprint's monthly fee for the wireless hotspot feature, you won't be able to use it. Call Sprint or visit your local Sprint store for more details on the monthly fee for tethering.

My Samsung Galaxy S4 finds the Laptop but no response or action is made by Laptop.

If you're using Windows, you'll need to go to the bottom-right part of your task bar, find your WiFi settings, and click your Galaxy S4's hotspot network name. If you're using a Mac, go to the top-right of your screen, find your WiFi settings, and click your Galaxy S4's hotspot network name.

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See more questions like this: It's an AT&T Galaxy S4, network unlocked for T-Mobile. I tried to connect the hotspot; it says no data or invalid SIM

Hotspot settings won't appear on my Samsung Galaxy S4?

If you're having trouble finding the hotspot settings on your phone, follow the beginning of this article. If you're still having an issue with setting up your hotspot, it's possible that you'll need to pay an additional fee each month to your carrier to use your mobile hotspot feature.

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See more questions like this: Hotspot missing from my Galaxy S4

How to increase the number of hotspot users on Sprint Samsung Galaxy S4?

There isn't a user limit on the Galaxy S4; if you're running into limits, it's likely that you've hit your tethering data cap. To increase your monthly tethering data allotment, call Sprint to learn about other plans.

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See more questions like this: How do I turn on the hotspot on for Samsung Galaxy S4

How do I connect my Laptop to the internet through my Samsung Galaxy S4?

How do I connect my Laptop to the internet through my Samsung Galaxy S4

So long as the hotspot is configured and activated on your Galaxy S4, you'll just need to find your Laptop's WiFi settings.

If you're using Windows, you'll need to go to the bottom-right part of your task bar, find your WiFi settings, and click your Galaxy S4's hotspot network name. If you're using a Mac, go to the top-right of your screen, find your WiFi settings, and click your Galaxy S4's hotspot network name.

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See more questions like this: I have a Galaxy S4 how do you connect to the internet

Need to use phone as hotspot for about 5 days?

Hi, Thinking about using my Samsung as a personal hotspot for maybe the next 5 days, 8-10 hours each day. Aside from data plan usage, can you see if I would run into any others problems using it this much?

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No problems there! The hotspot feature is meant to be used, so if you're worried about wearing your phone out, don't be! Just be sure to keep your phone plugged in -- using the hotspot feature that much will run down your battery rather quickly.

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Cheapest internet signal for S4?

I have a friend with an S4 who recently let her contract with AT&T lapsed, so she currently has no data plan, and no open WiFi networks in her neighborhood, I would like to at least restore her inter capabilities until she can make a payment, I was wondering what is the cheapest way to do that? WiFi app? or just caving and buying basic internet, I think it is only 20 bucks a month here anyway.

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Your least expensive option sounds like just getting basic internet. You have no risk of exceeding your plan. Alternatively you could use one of the 'pay as you go' plans from Verizon or T-Mobile, but they can quickly chew through $20.

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Was just looking to see if I could use my blackberry with Galaxy 4. Can access internet through blackberry but wanted to connect video chatting with grandson

Have blackberry Q5, Galaxy tab 4 - just curious re above question

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See more questions like this: I cannot find the access point on my U.S. Cellular Samsung Galaxy S4 because am using Straight Talk bring your own phone plan

After I tap Mobile Networks, I go to a screen which has 6 choices

Default messaging app. printing. mobile networks. mobile hotspot. tethering. VPN. say Mobile Hotspot AND Tethering, so I am unsure which to choose with this menu. Any help is appreciated

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Doubt in making S4 as WiFi hotspot?

Unable to see 'WPS' option, how to do that

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Why do I not have the hotspot option not showing under connections tab?

I have a Samsung Galaxy S4 mini and under the Connections-More Networks tab. From the Wireless and Networks page, tap the Tethering and Portable Hotspot, It does not show the option, Tethering and Portable Hotspot. The service I use is Straight Talk, if that is the reason the option is not there. Thanks

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See more questions like this: I don;t have an option called tethering or WiFi hotspot under connections. Does that mean is it not available?

Hi the screen of my Samsung S4 is totally black means I have to change the LCD and ribbon but I want to get all photos and contact from my phone please help?

I want to view all my contacts and photos

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Galaxy S4 does not have a tethering or hotspot option?

When I get to this step, my phone does not have the option to select tethering or hotspot. My carrier is Straight Talk. There is no option for any USB, tethering or mobile hotspot to select.. Please Help!. I have tried: I have tried looking elsewhere on my phone and downloading a few different apps that looked like they could possibly serve me as a hotspot. Let's just say it has taken up most of my time and energy today.. I think it was caused by: I think that the carrier (Straight Talk) must have it's own reasons for failing to include that option. I also feel as though the absence of a hotspot is congruent with the service plan they prefer to stick to, but since it is my data that I pay for I would like the opportunity to use it occasionally or if I so happen to need it! Thank you very much for your consideration and willingness to listen!

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Need support on obtaining password for tethering?

Trying to set up tethering from my S4 onto laptop - went to settings & set up tethering. However, I've not come across a screen to set up a password. WiFi on laptop shows Android availability but is asking for a password which I don't have. Help!. I have tried: Followed online guide, Tried attaching USB cable to see if that would work

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I have service with Consumer cellular?

Now with, a new to me, Galaxy S4 hotspot that worked on my old Samsung no longer works on this S4

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