How to Share Internet With a Bluetooth Phone

By Aubrey Kerr

You can share your cell phone's Internet connection with your Bluetooth-enabled computer. If you have an unlimited data plan with your phone, you may be able to use that connection with your laptop when you travel, or even at home, and eliminate the need for a separate wireless net account.

Step 1

Turn on your cell phone and your computer. You'll be changing settings on both devices.

Step 2

Open the Bluetooth menu on your computer and make sure Bluetooth is on or enabled. On a Mac, click on the Bluetooth logo in the upper toolbar and choose "Bluetooth: On." If you're using XP or Vista, find the logo in the Start Menu or in the bottom right corner near the system clock and make sure it's active.

Step 3

Make your phone "Discoverable." Navigate to the Bluetooth menu on your phone, it should be under "Settings" or "Tools," and choose the Discoverable option. Depending on the phone, it might also be labeled "Make discoverable" or similar. This allows your computer to find your phone.

Step 4

Wait a moment for the passkey. The passkey pop-up box should appear on both devices as soon as they're connected. Make sure the passkey numbers match and press "OK" or "Accept."

Step 5

On your computer, click "Browse Device" (or similar, depending on your operating system). Your phone should be listed. Look for a setting called "phone as modem" or PAM and follow the instructions to connect to the Internet. If you don't see this option, check your phone's user guide for instructions specific to your model.

Tips & Warnings

  • Contact your phone provider to make sure this doesn't violate their terms of service. Some cell phone carriers restrict the amount of data transmitted, or will charge extra fees if the connection is shared with other devices.
  • Bluetooth signals are not encrypted. This means they aren't secure and your data can possibly be seen by other computers as it's transmitted. Avoid transmitting sensitive information over a Bluetooth Internet connection.