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Using the Personal Hotspot on your Verizon iPhone

#1 User is offline   Macworld 

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Posted 22 February 2011 - 11:26 AM

Post your comments for Using the Personal Hotspot on your Verizon iPhone here
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#2 User is offline   Javair 

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  Posted 22 February 2011 - 01:04 PM

How Fast are the times mentioned here? I guess I assume that web pages load slower than when a computer is connected to a cable modem, or an Apple Airport WiFi connection. Right? Can one watch video on this tethered connection just fine?
If that were true, then we really could cut up our cables.
Someone clear up the speed thing for me?
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#3 User is offline   Glenn_Fleishman 

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Posted 22 February 2011 - 01:11 PM

View PostJavair, on 22 February 2011 - 01:04 PM, said:

How Fast are the times mentioned here? I guess I assume that web pages load slower than when a computer is connected to a cable modem, or an Apple Airport WiFi connection. Right? Can one watch video on this tethered connection just fine?
If that were true, then we really could cut up our cables.
Someone clear up the speed thing for me?


From the article: "In Seattle in two indoor locations, I was unable to beat 500 Kbps, while my AT&T iPhone topped 1 Mbps."

Verizon's network cannot provide sustained transfers of more than 2 Mpbs in ideal circumstances, and the more typical range is several hundred Kbps to just over 1 Mbps.

Further, you get charged by the GB, so watching video would be a problem.

Bluetooth, USB, and Wi-Fi all operate faster than an iPhone can send and receive data to and from the Verizon mobile broadband network.
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#4 User is offline   SheilaM 

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  Posted 22 February 2011 - 01:42 PM

So you have to have the cellular data on for the hotspot to work, does that time count on the 3g data plan and the hotspot data plan?..and when you are using another hotspot, a free one from say McD's, does that wifi time count in the 2gbs of time?
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#5 User is offline   Glenn_Fleishman 

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Posted 22 February 2011 - 01:59 PM

View PostSheilaM, on 22 February 2011 - 01:42 PM, said:

So you have to have the cellular data on for the hotspot to work, does that time count on the 3g data plan and the hotspot data plan?..and when you are using another hotspot, a free one from say McD's, does that wifi time count in the 2gbs of time?


I included an explanation of this in the article, but it's brief and I can see how it's not entirely clear if you don't know all the ins and outs of data plans:

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Verizon charges $20 per month for Personal Hotspot and includes a 2GB pool of data separate from the unmetered data usage available for apps, e-mail, and surfing. Additional gigabytes (partial or whole) are $20 each.


You have to have a Verizon mobile data plan when you buy and activate an iPhone on its network. That plan is $30 per month, and Verizon only offers that plan (with unlimited data) for the iPhone 4 at present.

To use the Personal Hotspot feature, you have to enable it as a separate feature by calling Verizon Wireless's customer service. It costs an additional $20 per month, and includes a separate pool of 2GB of data.

Anything you do on the phone itself (apps, etc.) is included in the unlimited data plan. Any Personal Hotspot use (a device outside the phone using it) draws down data from the 2GB plan. Exceed 2GB, and you are charged $20 for each 1GB thereafter, even if you use only part of a gigabyte in the remaining time in the billing cycle. Unused data does not roll over: neither the 2GB pool nor parts of unused gigabytes purchased beyond that.

The Personal Hotspot feature only works over the cellular network. If you use your phone to connect to a Wi-Fi network, you pay any (or no) charges associated with that Wi-Fi network to the Wi-Fi network operator. McDonald's and Starbucks run free networks. You cannot use the iPhone's Personal Hotspot feature to share a Wi-Fi network to other devices, however (this is noted early in the article).
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#6 User is offline   SheilaM 

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  Posted 22 February 2011 - 02:54 PM

Thx, I did understand all those things. I guess I wanted to make sure that when I am using my own wifi in my house (hotspot off) that I wasn't using up that data. I understand now that the hotspot has to be actually on for you to be charged. I have had my Iphone since the 7th-never had a smartphone. The only thing I was/am a bit disappointed was that you have to have 3g on to send a photo, even in just plain texting. I thought something was wrong with my phone because it wasn't working on just the phone or wifi..called verizon and they told me the 3g has to be on--that kinda hinders spontaneity, as I don't always have my 3g on. I guess I'm trying to figure out how much I will/can use before they take away the unlimited plan.
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#7 User is offline   Glenn_Fleishman 

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Posted 22 February 2011 - 03:02 PM

View PostSheilaM, on 22 February 2011 - 02:54 PM, said:

Thx, I did understand all those things. I guess I wanted to make sure that when I am using my own wifi in my house (hotspot off) that I wasn't using up that data. I understand now that the hotspot has to be actually on for you to be charged.


Both turned on and having another device connected. You're never charged from the hotspot bandwidth pool for bandwidth used by apps on the phone itself.

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I have had my Iphone since the 7th-never had a smartphone. The only thing I was/am a bit disappointed was that you have to have 3g on to send a photo, even in just plain texting. I thought something was wrong with my phone because it wasn't working on just the phone or wifi..called verizon and they told me the 3g has to be on--that kinda hinders spontaneity, as I don't always have my 3g on. I guess I'm trying to figure out how much I will/can use before they take away the unlimited plan.


I suspect it will be just like with AT&T. If you signed up for unlimited today, you will keep unlimited service until a. Verizon stops offering it and b. you then change your plan. Anyone who signed for unlimited AT&T iPhone service before June 2010 can keep using unlimited data indefinitely unless they change their service plan.

All text/multimedia messaging relies on cellular networking, as silly as that is.

This post has been edited by Glenn_Fleishman: 22 February 2011 - 03:02 PM

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#8 User is offline   rickfletcherusa 

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  Posted 22 February 2011 - 05:27 PM

Could I use my 3G iPad I purchased from AT&T to run a navigation app on the iPad connected via hotspot off my Verizon iPhone?
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#9 User is offline   Glenn_Fleishman 

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Posted 22 February 2011 - 05:35 PM

View Postrickfletcherusa, on 22 February 2011 - 05:27 PM, said:

Could I use my 3G iPad I purchased from AT&T to run a navigation app on the iPad connected via hotspot off my Verizon iPhone?


Absolutely. The Personal Hotspot feature looks precisely like any normal Wi-Fi network to any device equipped with Wi-Fi. There's no filtering or restriction. But as I note, you can easily use a ton of data, because normal thinking (on your part) or throttling (in iOS on 3G networks) aren't in effect! Beware.
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#10 User is offline   AllenWarrenJr 

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  Posted 22 February 2011 - 06:43 PM

I still have my Verizon MiFi active because I wanted to make sure the Personal Hotspot worked correctly. From my experience using the WiFi option on my iPhone (To use with my iPad) the Personal Hotspot feature is noticeably slower than my Verizon MiFi. I thought is was the same thing. I'm definitely getting rid of one of them.
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#11 User is offline   Fredric 

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  Posted 22 February 2011 - 11:16 PM

I don't have the Verizon iPhone yet, but have 'heard' that one can only use Facebook via WiFi. If that is true, then I assume that the iPhone must be connected to an external WiFi source. If that is the case, then I suppose I could use my Verizon MiFi as that source. Am I correct?
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#12 User is offline   Glenn_Fleishman 

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Posted 22 February 2011 - 11:21 PM

View PostFredric, on 22 February 2011 - 11:16 PM, said:

I don't have the Verizon iPhone yet, but have 'heard' that one can only use Facebook via WiFi. If that is true, then I assume that the iPhone must be connected to an external WiFi source. If that is the case, then I suppose I could use my Verizon MiFi as that source. Am I correct?


FaceTime, not Facebook -- FaceTime is the live video chat feature designed by Apple. I can see how you might mistake one for the other in passing!

(And, yes, you can use FaceTime via a MiFi. Also, Skype for iPhone supports Skype-to-Skype video chat.)
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#13 User is offline   Fredric 

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  Posted 22 February 2011 - 11:40 PM

Thanks Glenn. I was just about to go back and correct it. Very helpful article.
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#14 User is offline   carlamcclellan 

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  Posted 08 December 2011 - 11:59 AM

Can you stop incoming calls while on the hotstop?
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