Many readers ask me how to use their iPhone’s Personal Hotspot or Android’s Tethering & Portable Hotspot feature with Straight Talk WirelessUnfortunately in most cases you can’t even turn it on and even if you can your not supposed to use it. Straight Talk’s Terms of Service agreement explicitly prohibits the use of this feature.
For those of you who do not know, Personal or Portable Hotspot is a feature that lets you share the cellular data from your phone with your laptop, tablet, or other devices so they can connect to the internet. With Personal Hotspot, you connect your other devices to smartphone using Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or a USB cable and use the cellular data connection on your phone to get on the Internet.
If you find that the feature does work for you, use it at your own risk. I don’t use it myself, others report using it with no issue, others have said that if Straight Talk detects you are using it they may disable your account.
If you really want or need hotspot, consider switching to another prepaid wireless carrier. AT&T’s, Verizon’s, Cricket Wireless’, and Total Wireless’s support Personal Hotspot and Tethering & Portable Hotspot. And in 2017, many of these other prepaid wireless plans over as much or more high speed data as Straight Talk and our competitively priced.
As I said though using Straight Talk’s Terms of Service specifically states you can “tether” other devices to your phone and share the data. From TERMS AND CONDITIONS: STRAIGHTTALK WIRELESS see section 6.
Turning on Personal Hotspot
As you can see in my video below, I tried using Hotspot with four different combinations. I tried to use it with iPhone and my Google Nexus 5x (Android) using both Straight Talk’s AT&T and Verizon Networks. Out of the four combinations, I was only able to get hotspot working on my Nexus 5x using Straight Talk’s Verizon network. When I tried to use hotspot with the Nexus 5X and Straight Talk’s AT&T network, I could see the Tethering & Portable Hotspot options in Settings, but when I tried to turn it on a message saying “Account not set up for tethering: to enable go to att.com/mywireless or dial 611. Since my wireless company is Straight Talk and not AT&T, I not able to use AT&T’s mywireless to enable tethering.
I also tried to turn on Personal Hotspot on my iPhone SE using Straight Talk’s Verizon network. I was able to go into Settings > Cellular and choose Setup Personal Hotspot. Unfortunately, as soon as I tried to turn it on a message saying “Set Up Personal Hotspot: To enable Personal Hotspot on this account, visit http://mobile.vzw.com/hybridClient/mvn/hotspot appeared. Since my wireless company is Straight Talk and not Verizon, I not able to use Verizon’s My Verizon Mobile to enable tethering. Finally I tried to turn on Personal Hotspot on my iPhone 6s using Straight Talk’s AT&T network. I didn’t get very far. The Setup Personal Hotspot option in Settings is missing.
So I was only able to get Portable Hotspot to work with my Nexus 5x using Straight Talk’s Verizon network, and even then I’m still breaking my service agreement if I use it.
So what should you do if you really want to use hotspot? Well if hotspot is an important feature for you, consider switching to a prepaid wireless serivce that supports the feature. For people that want to use the Verizon network, Verizon Wireless prepaid supports hotspot. For those who want to use the AT&T network, I’m currently looking to see if I can find a alternative. It looks like AT&T GoPhone may let you add data as well.
See my video below.