How to Use iPhone As a Modem

By Contributing Writer

If you need access to the Internet from your computer when traveling, and can't find a Wi-Fi hotspot, use your iPhone. Your iPhone can provide your computer and other devices access to the Internet using a feature known as Personal Hotspot. This feature makes it easy to use USB, Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to share your iPhone Internet connection. Keep in mind that your cellular plan must allow this feature, so check with your provider before heading out on a trip.

Things You'll Need

  • Windows 7, Vista, XP Service Pack 3 or later, or Mac OS X v10.5.8 or later
  • iTunes 9.2 or later
  • Dock to USB connector cable
  • Bluetooth 2.0 capability with Mac OS X 10.4.11 or later, or with Windows Windows 7, XP Service Pack 3 or later, or Vista

Step 1

Click the "Settings" icon on your iPhone. The "Settings" menu on the iPhone is located on the page where you placed it, typically the first page. The icon is gray in color and has cogs as the design.

Step 2

Click the "General", "Settings," and then "Network."

Step 3

Click "Personal Hotspot," and then slide the option to "On."

Step 4

Make your connection choice. IPhone 4 and higher can connect using Wi-Fi, if your computer has an updated operating system and version of iTunes. If you connect via Bluetooth, make sure both devices are discoverable in Bluetooth. Click "General," "Settings" and "Bluetooth" to pair the devices. Connect via USB by using your dock to USB connector to physically attach your iPhone to your computer.

Step 5

Launch your web browser to access the Internet. Check your connectivity on the right side of the desktop toolbar if you're using a Windows computer, or the signal icon on the upper-right side if you're using a Mac.

Tips & Warnings

  • Once your iPhone and computer are set up, use "Settings," "Personal Hotspot" to modify the hotspot settings.
  • If the Network page displays the message "Set Up Personal Hotspot," your plan doesn't include this feature. Contact your carrier for further assistance.