Share PC or Mac Internet to iPhone: via USB cable, Bluetooth

Share PC or Mac Internet to iPhone: via USB cable, Bluetooth

An iPhone can be used as a tethered modem that may be connected to your computer wirelessly or with a USB cable. This will allow you to share your computer's internet connection with your iPhone for improved connectivity. This article will show you how to share your computer's internet connection with your mobile phone.

How to share internet connection to iPhone with USB? 

Sharing your iPhone's 4G or 5G network connection with a PC is simple, sharing the Internet that your PC is connect to with your iPhone is a lot more complicated and requires a work around. The following method is for Windows PC's. 

  • Go to Control Panel > Network and Internet Settings > Network and Sharing Center
  • Then select change adapter settings and disable the active ethernet adapter by right clicking on the adapter that is currently in use and then choosing to disable it. 
  • You will now need to connect your iPhone to your computer using a USB to Lightning cable. A pop-up asking you if you trust this computer may pop-up, select trust.
  • Now go back to the adapter settings. You should now see your iPhone amongst the list of adapters.
  • Right click on the adapter that was disabled and choose properties from the menu. Then click sharing > enable internet connection sharing. Right click on the Internet adapter and select enable.
  • This should allow you to access the Internet from your PC on your iPhone. 

Can you share internet connection from PC to iPhone via bluetooth?

You may be aware that you can use your iPhone as a hotspot for your PC with 4G or 5G via bluetooth, but it is also actually possible to do the inverse and share your internet connection from your PC to your mobile device. 

  • On your Windows computer, go to Start > Settings > Network & Internet > Mobile hotspot.
  • Then to share your internet connection, choose your WiFi network, then select share over. You can choose to share your connection over Bluetooth. 
  • Select Edit and create a new network name for the shared connection and save.
  • Now turn on the Mobile hotspot. You should now be able to find the new network on your mobile device, connect and access the internet. 

How to share Internet connection to an iPhone via wireless network? 

This section is specific to creating an ad hoc network for an Apple device (i.e. iPhone, iPad, or iPod) using a Windows computer. So to do this, you will need a windows operating system, LAN internet connection, and WiFi card. There are three steps involved in creating an ad hoc network: creating your network base, enabling LAN sharing, and connecting your devices to your network.

Create a WLAN network

Creating an ad hoc network (WLAN) will allow you to exchange files, share printers, or share internet access.

  • The first step in creating your ad hoc network is to go to your Network and Sharing Center by going to Start > Network > Network and Sharing Center. Click the Manage Wireless Networks button located in the left bar. Then, click Add.
  • In the window that opens, select Create Ad Hoc Network, followed by Next. Then, choose a Network Name — this will be the SSID of the network that you are connecting to your device.
  • In the Security Type, select No authentication (Open). Finally, select Save this network, and click Next.
  • Let the utility work. If it asks you to share your connection, you should accept the request and proceed directly to Step 3. Otherwise, proceed to Step 2.

Allow LAN sharing on Windows

Now, we are going to instruct Windows to allow LAN sharing. This will allow your computer to access the connection from your device.

  • Go back to the Network and Sharing Center by going to Start > Network > Network and Sharing Center. On the left-hand side, click Change Settings Map.
  • Right-click on Local Area Connection, and select Properties. Then, go to the Sharing tab.
  • Check Allow other network users to connect through this computer's Internet connection, followed by OK.

Connect to the network

It is now time to ask the PC to connect to the ad hoc network.

  • Head to the Network and Sharing Center, and click Connect or Disconnect.
  • In the window that opens, click the network name you created and click Connect.
  • Go into the application settings of your iPhone, iPod, or iPad, and tap WiFi. Make sure your WiFi is enabled, and tap on the network name you chose in step 1.
  • Once connected, test your internet connection by simply opening an Internet browser application.

How to use your MacBook as a hotspot

Your Apple laptop can also act as a wireless hotspot, allowing you to connect other devices, including your iPhone, to it. However, it is important to know that you cannot share a Wi-Fi connection to a network that you are already connected to. In order to convert your Mac into Hotspot you need to use Ethernet connection to your Mac.

  • Tap the Apple menu and open System Preferences > Sharing.
  • In the menu, find the option Internet sharing. You will see that this feature is set to Off.
  • In the Share your connection from pop-up menu, select your Ethernet.
  • In the To computers using list, select the port other computers use to access the shared internet connection. For example, if you want to share your internet connection over Wi-Fi, select Wi-Fi.
  • If you chose Wi-Fi in the To computers using list, click Wi-Fi Options, configure the internet-sharing network, then click OK.
  • Network Name: Type a name for the shared connection.
  • Channel: Click the Channel pop-up menu, then choose another channel if you don't want to use the default channel.
  • Security: If available, click the Security pop-up menu, then choose an option.
  • Choose WPA3 Personal if all computers that use the shared connection support WPA3.
  • Choose WPA2/WPA3 Personal if some computers that use the shared connection support only WPA2.
  • Password: Enter a password. If you want to see the current password, select the Show password box below the password.
  • Click Done.
  • Turn on Internet Sharing. Click Start. 

Can I share Internet from Mac if I don't have Ethernet?

If your MacBook doesn't have an Ethernet port,  you can buy a USB Wifi Adapter dongle and select it instead of the Ethernet connection while making a Hotspot. 

How to share Internet from Mac via Bluetooth

In the case you don't have Ethernet nor can't get a USB Wifi Adapter, there is a way to share Internet from Mac to iPhone via Bluetooth PAN (Personal Area Network). However, with this method, your connection will be not as fast as Wi-Fi and may not be compatible with some devices. 

  • In order to share Internet from Mac via Bluetooth, turn on the Bluetooth function on your MacBook and make sure you select Bluetooth PAN in the box To computers using. With the exception of this parameter, the process of creating a Hotspot is the same as using Ethernet.
  • To connect your iPhone to the Hotspot, turn the Bluetooth on the smartphone.
  • Open the Settings > Cellular Data (or Mobile Data) > Personal Hotspot.
  • Now open up the Bluetooth pane in System Preferences and scroll down until you see your iPhone, then click on Connect
  • A code will appear on both of your devices. Tap on Pair on your iPhone to pair both devices. Tap Pair and enter the code shown on your computer. You will see a blue Bluetooth icon in the top left of your smartphone screen indicating the devices are connected.
  • On your iPhone, go to Wi-Fi and find the Mac you want to link to. Tap on Join the Personal hotspot. Enter the password.
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