Using Personal Hotspot with Straight Talk

Straight Talk Does Not Support Hotspot

Straight Talk does not support using Portable Hotspot or Personal Hotspot. Even though some Straight Talk customers are able to turn on and use Hotspot, using the feature violates the Straight Talk’s terms and conditions of service.

Before going any further, this article is not about how to enable or use hotspot with Straight Talk. I don’t know any apps, tips, tricks, or hacks to enable Hotspot on your phone if it isn’t already working. If that is what you are looking for this isn’t the article for you. That said, in the rest of this article I’ll explain more about Straight Talk and Hotspot.

Personal Hotspot or Portable Explained

For those who don’t know portable or personal hotspot lets your phone share it’s cellular data internet connection with your computer, tablet, or other devices. With hotspot, you’ll connect your laptop or tablet to your phone using Wi-Fi and be able connect to the internet just like using your Wi-Fi at home or the office. Not everyone needs Hotspot as a feature, but for those who do its a great way to connect your other devices to the internet when Wi-Fi isn’t available. If you use iPhone this feature is called Personal Hotspot. If you use a Samsung or other Android phone its called Portable Hotspot.

Using Personal Hotspot Violates Straight Talk’s Terms and Conditions of Service

Straight Talk doesn’t offer Hotspot as a feature. However, many of my readers have reported they are able to enable and use hotspot with Straight Talk. I’ve tried it out in the past and I was able to use hotspot with my Android phone with Straight Talk’s verizon towers. I was not able to use it with iPhone nor with Straight Talk’s AT&T towers. I have not tried it with their T-Mobile towers.

Most recently some readers have told me that their data services have been suspended or even had their accounts terminated for using hotspot. Most, if not all, that I have heard from are currently using the Straight Talk’s unlimited $55 plan and have used 100s of GB of data with Portable Hotspot. Many report using it for one or more months before getting shut down by Straight Talk.

Straight Talk has recently updated plan description for the $55 Unlimited Plan. It says At 60 GB, we reserve the right to review your account for usage in violation of Straight Talk’s terms and conditions..

If you look at straighttalk.com, Hotspot isn’t listed as a plan feature. According to the Straight Talk’s Terms and Conditions and Service, using Hotspot violates the agreement. Check out 7. UNAUTHORIZED USE OF SERVICE under I. STRAIGHT TALK WIRELESS SERVICE. Obviously this was written by their legal team but it pretty much says you cannot use Hotspot.

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My Experience Trying Hotspot with Straight Talk

I made a previous video about Straight Talk and Hotspot back in 2016. I tried using Hotspot with four different combinations of phones and Straight Talk towers. I tried both iPhone and Android on Straight Talk’s AT&T and Verizon towers. I found that I was only able to get Hotspot to work with my Android phone using Straight Talk’s Verizon towers. Before writing this article I tried to use Hotspot with iPhone and Android with Straight Talk’s ATT towers and still did not work. I currently do not have a Straight Talk number active that uses the Verizon towers. When I do, I’ll try it with my iPhone and Android phones and update this article.

Choose a Prepaid Wireless Service That Supports Hotspot

I think it would be great if Straight Talk supported hotspot. Perhaps they will add it at some time. However, until then, I recommend that if you need hotspot then use a prepaid wireless service that supports hotspot. See my article ….

So what about you? Are you using Straight Talk and Hotspot? Leave a reply below and share. Be sure to say what phone you have and if your using Straight Talk’s AT&T, Verizon, T-Mobile, or Sprint towers.

174 Comments

  1. Nikki Melton | | Reply

    I’ve used my hotspot since December of 2017 for my PlayStation and other phones and not once was my data terminated. Now today all of a sudden after almost a year it’s not showing I have net on my phone which is a cheap lg running off of att towers. I called and he says I violated terms n conditions what a crock

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      But you did violate the terms of service. It took them 10 months to figure it out. It would be great if they offered unlimited hotspot service for $55 per month. I’m not aware of any carrier that offers full speed unlimited hotspot wit their phone service at any price. Check out my video on net buddy, perhaps that is a service you might be interested in but you’ll still need to pay for a phone service.

    • JZ | | Reply

      Same thing happened to me. I just bought another unlimited plan a few days earlier than planned and was good to go. I just dialed things back a bit this month and try to stay under 60 gb for school work

  2. Skul | | Reply

    You obviously read that part you have in the red box wrong. In parentheses it says ‘excluding’ hotspot not including. I read the terms and conditions on the site the other day and it specifically says that you can have up to 5 devices connected to your hotspot.

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      I disagree with you. first, the part bout five devices, is in section IV. STRAIGHT TALK MOBILE HOTSPOT AND STRAIGHT TALK BRING YOUR OWN TABLET. It applies only to tablet and dedicated hotspot plans, not phone service. Second,
      (vi) access to the internet, intranets, or other data networks except as the device’s native applications and capabilities permit (excluding all hotspot applications),
      This means you can use internet with all of your devices native applications and capablilities EXCEPT for hotspot.

      third, the straighttalk.com says “*TETHERING TO ANOTHER DEVICE IS PROHIBITED. OTHER LIMITATIONS APPLY. Please refer to your terms and conditions.”

      And finally, I completely disagree with you that any of this is “obvious”

  3. Charlotte Schneidewind | | Reply

    I am worried that I am doing something wrong. I truly don’t know how I did this but I turned on my hotspot and gave permissions for three devices. My straight talk LG cell phone, my android tablet and my husbands android tablet. They all work and we get on every.morning for a little while to newspapers. I do not have a straight talk hotspot plan. While I was visiting with my neighbor about it he said I was doing something illegal. Am I going to get into trouble doing this?

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      Well, I pretty much describe all this in the article and the video. I wouldn’t say it’s illegal, it just violates the terms and conditions of service, meaning Straight Talk would suspend or terminate your service if they choose to. If you read through the comments here and on the YouTube video, some people using hotspot with the unlimited plan have been told to stop or terminated. But I’m talking about people using 50+ GB of data with hotspot. If you are using far less data, i doubt you will have a problem.
      Straight Talk isn’t going to have you arrested or sue you, they just want to prevent people from overuseing their data.

  4. Shadowolf | | Reply

    What I don’t get is this if I stream movies to my laptop or Xbox wouldn’t I still be using the same data just on a bigger screen it’s hard to hear and watch a movie on a phone

    • Shadowolf | | Reply

      Forgot to tell u I still use the same or about the same amount of data about 30 to 40 gigs a month

      • Bob Thompson | | Reply

        Hey,
        Well since you a T-Mobile customer, you’d be subject to T-Mobile’s terms of service regarding hotspot, not Straight Talk. And while I think it would be great if Straight Talk supported hotspot, but they explicitly do call this out in their terms of service. As consumers,we decide where we spend our money for wireless service so if we don’t like the TOS we can look else where. We really dont know why ST doesn’t support hotspot. Perhaps they need to pay verizon, att, tmobile, etc for all that bandwith. Or perhaps, their business relationship between the companies prohibits hotspot. Check out my article and video on prepaid companies that do support hotspot Prepaid Wireless and Portable or Personal Hotspot

        Finally,if Hotspot on Straight Talk works with your phone and you use it, the worst that will happen is that they will contacts you and tell you to stop using it, temporarily suspend you, or terminate your service (I think the way the do that is you simply no longer have any data, even if you keep paying). Some people use hotspot without issue, others are forced to stop. I wrote this article so that people can make informed choices.

  5. Erick | | Reply

    I have an unlocked samsung galaxy note 4 that has a bring your own phone sim card for at&t. My hotspot works great where I live. Funny thing is that I originally used an iPhone 4s that didn’t work with the hospot and only got 3g coverage. I bought the note 4 and put the same sim card into it that was in my iPhone 4s and immediately got 4G LTE and the hotspot worked. I will be upgrading to the unlimited plan so I don’t have to use the awful DSL where I live. I will just make sure not to hit 60 gbs in a service term. Wasn’t sure how strict straight talk would be with that part of their terms of service until I read your article. Thanks

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      That’s cool. just remember I am sharing what other readers have been telling me. We are assuming that they are only looking at people under the 60GB on unlimited.
      Regarding your iPhone 4 it does not support LTE. AT&T played a little trick on customers, they changed the network connection indicator to say “4G” when you had a HSPA connection because technically the speeds on HSPA were fast enough to qualify as 4G speeds. on and android phone you see an H or H+ for that type of connection. However with the Straight Talk ATT network, they never made that change so the same connection would show 3G. Keep an eye out about for an article and video about a home service that uses the AT&T LTE network.

  6. PETER K | | Reply

    I’m on ST AT&T service, I’ve found if you use a Nexus or Pixel device……hotspot works. I’ve been using it for years.

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      Cool. I was not able to get it to work with my Google LG Nexus 5X with Straight Talk’s ATT network, only with Straight Talk’s Verizon network. It’s still against the terms of service, but the people I hear from that get suspended or terminated are using 100s of GB on the unlimited plan.

  7. Shadowolf | | Reply

    I’ve been using the hotspot on my major ZTE model z899vl for a year for my Xbox they even fixed my nat setting so I could play now I’m being told it’s not allowed so confused

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      I am not sure who fixed your NAT issue, but using hotspot have always Straight Talk’s Terms and Conditions of service. The fact that the hotspot feature works out of the box for some customers leads to confusion. Are you saying Straight Talk customer service helped you fix a Network Address Translation issue? what did they tell you to do?

      • Shadowolf | | Reply

        I understand there thinking if your sharing with others but I use only for me on Xbox or my laptop so movies r easier to watch I would use same data using my phone as far as my nat settings i was using t- mobile not straight talk my bad

  8. John Alexander | | Reply

    I’m a current ATT customer thinking about switching over. Contacted 4 different Straight Talk representatives trying to find out about bringing my own phone, and as to whether my existing hot spot feature on my phone would continue to work, and couldn’t find one that spoke clear enough English for me to understand, let alone them having a clue about whether hot spot would work or not!

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      Hi John,
      Unfortunate that Straight Talk customer service isn’t able to answer these questions. I hope the answer was clear in my article. Using Hotspot is against their terms of service, even though the feature works for some people.

      If you want to switch to a prepaid service that supports hotspot and uses the att network. ATT prepaid and Cricket Wireless are two options. Its a free option with ATT prepaid and costs $10 per month more with cricket. For both services, if you are on an unlimited plan, they restrict hotpsot to 10GB of high speed data.

      If you are willing to switch to the a prepaid service that uses verizon, t-mobile, or sprint towers you have more options.

      Which Straight talk plan were you interested in? how much data do you need?

  9. Debbie | | Reply

    If I buy the $45 plan and wish to share data that I pay for,why would Straight Talk care? Isn’t that my business?

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      No. Not really. Straight Talk sets their terms of service you agree to them when you sign up. If you disagree with the terms you have the option to choose a prepaid wireless carrier that offers hotspot as a feature. As far as I know their terms violate no consumer or FCC law. If they did it would be a different story.

      I don’t know the reason for their policy. Perhaps it’s agreement they have with ATT, Verizon, and T-Mobile, the companies’ they buy service from. Or maybe they pay for all the data you use and they know you’ll use more with hotspot and that costs them more. I don’t know.

      As a consumer, you have the power. You are spending $540 per year on Straight Talk. If you want hotspot choose a carrier that supports it.

      Now all that said, I know for some people using Straight Talk hotspot works on their phone and I have not heard from anyone using the $45 plan and being shutdown for using hotspot. I have only heard from people on unlimited plan using 100s of GB of data being shutdown.

      If you tell me which Straight Talk towers and phone you use I may be able to recommend an alternative that supports hotspot.

  10. Mdrk | | Reply

    This, my inquiry, is off-topic.
    BACKSTORY: My iPhone 7 was an ATT device when my son bought it new and then used it for a year or so. Then he gifted it to me. It was completely reset and removed from my sons Apple ID; plus l phoned ATT had ATT unlock it. Then I put a Straight Talk ATT SIM card in it and activated it, very easily. It’s working fine in my somewhat rural, mountainous area. I haven’t traveled with it at all, yet. ATT doesn’t have the best local reputation for good signal strength, but this iPhone 7 is working better than my old iPhone 6s+ on prepaid Verizon [which is a service that’s reputed to be very good, locally].
    MY QUESTION: Why can’t I properly open dogpile.com search engine while using Safari, Firefox, or Chrome? I’ve found that I can open dogpile.com seemingly only when using WiFi. I don’t have an internet [or tv] service subscription, and I love using dogpile, so … What gives?

  11. Justin snider | | Reply

    Older post but

    I used straight talk ultimate unlimited and read carefully on at&t towers. It said not hotspot unless your plan allows and something like before 60 gigs they don’t look into it. I’m on a Blu Vizo 5r it’s a big cheap phone. For one month I used 55gigs almost all hotspot Xbox one s smart TV and computers. Worked great better that the DSL I can get in my area really reliable too. So it worked out.

    I’ve just today switched to T-Mobile towers ( lost phone cancelled sim and had the extra T-Mobile sim from the book pack, found phone had to use T-Mobile sim. Can’t get hotspot to work at all.

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      None of Straight Talk’s phone plans support hotspot. There is some unclear language in their terms and conditions of service, but if you ask them they will tell you they do not support it. You could get another AT&T SIM and use hotspot again but if you read through the comments it seems a number of people had their data service suspended or their service terminated. I was never able to get hotspot to work with ST’s ATT towers myself, only the Verizon ones.

  12. Jennifer Kain | | Reply

    how does one determine which carrier’s towers will be used with a phone?

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      Do you have the phone already or are you looking to buy a phone from Straight Talk?

  13. Cable Guy | | Reply

    when i left T-Mobile for their terrible coverage (and i mean terrible, cant go 5 miles outside of the city without losing connection), i bought the cheapest straight talk phone they had, the ZTE Majesty Pro, just as a temporary phone until i could afford a better smartphone. to my surprise it came with a hotspot feature that works perfectly fine and i began to carry my old S7 (from T-Mobile) along. the ZTE would be just for calls and text but thd hotspot is always on so i could continue doing everything else on the S7. i also still have my S6 (from Sprint) that i have set up for my son to play Pokemon GO with me. 2 smartphones with no service playing pokemon go (anything requiring data) through a $30 phone. the connection is surprisingly fast and much better coverage than overpriced T-Mobile with 5 mile within the cities. anyway i dont use it for streaming videos or downloading stuff, just mainly for Pokemon go and web surfing. never exceeded the 10gb limit

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      Great story, thanks for sharing. You are right about T-Mobile, in some places it works great with amazing speeds, but you never know when you are going to hit an area without coverage. My guess is your ZTE phone is using Straight Talk’s verizon towers. Since hotspot is against their terms of service, they could shut you doen at any time. But, I doubt the care about people using hotspot on the 2 GB or 10 GB plans. Keep an eye on my straight talk deals and promotion page if you want to get a good deal on a new or reconditioned Straight Talk phone. Straight Talk Deals and Promotions. Today is the last deal of their 50% off promo (max $100 savings).

  14. Justin | | Reply

    I have a straight talk phone with hotspot used it for ten months straight Talk disabled my data at 5am this morning bc I was using my hotspot with an unlimited high speed data plan they told me your not allowed to use hotspot and that’s y the turned my data off and only way get it back on is to pay my bill early and not use the hotspot it bs!!!

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      Hi Justin,
      I am surprised to hear it took 10 months to shut you down. I understand the appeal of having unlimited bandwidth to use with both your phone and perhaps even replace your need for broadband at home all for $55 a month. But, as stated use of hotspot is a violation of their terms of service. As far a I know, this policy does not violate any consumer laws so it is their right to have this policy in place. However you are the customer and you have a choice for wireless service and how you speed your money. I think Verizon Wireless prepaid is the only company to currently offer unlimited hotspot with their unlimited plan. From what I know, they have a max download speed of 600Kbps though. Depending on what you use hotspot for, this may be fast enough for your needs.

  15. Helen | | Reply

    I have a Samsung galaxy j3 pre paid straight talk 55$ refill card and I am trying to share the hotspot but cant find it to turn it on

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      Hi Helen,
      Perhaps you could take a second look at the article.

  16. Jade | | Reply

    Follow up to my original post below.

    Both phones at their 5th month.

    Phone1 avg 60gb monthly
    Phone2 avg 180gb

  17. Rita Young | | Reply

    I have a stylos 3 and yes they turned my data off for the rest of the month because I used my phone as a hot spot with my tablet. I knew it was against the rules but I was just trying to see if I could get away with it, lol. It didn’t work.

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      Hmm. just curious. Do you think you used a lot of data?

  18. Venitra | | Reply

    Straight talk has hotspot

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      It’s against their terms of service.

  19. david | | Reply

    one plus one works as a hot spot out of the box. $85 to $150 on Swappa. Works great in mine.

      • david | | Reply

        ATT.

  20. Jennifer Bryant | | Reply

    Last year I bought an unlocked ZTE Zmax 2 at Walmart & used the Straight Talk BYOP kit (I chose to use the AT&T SIM enclosed since the T Mobile SIM was my only other option…). The mobile hotspot feature showed up in my settings menu from day one. Needless to say that phone’s screen is now destroyed after being shattered..ANYHOO.. I bought a Straight Talk branded Samsung Galaxy J3 Luna Pro (that uses Verizon’s network or whatever) & mobile hotspot isn’t available to be used anymore. I’ve been on the Unlimited $55 plan for years & through many phones via Straight Talk & that was the only reason I ever had hot spot. 🙁 I guess the trick to having it was the unlocked phone.

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      Hmm. You had hotspot on the AT&T network?

      • Danielle Davis | | Reply

        I have a blu Vivo XL 3 the hotspot on the phone did work on the $45 a month plan then I bought the $55 a month plan and the hotspot stopped working but the internet still works on my phone

        • Bob Thompson | | Reply

          I am surprised that hotspot worked in the first place with the XL 3. Did you rely on hotspot? would you consider changing carriers to get hotspot?

  21. Nikolas | | Reply

    I use my phone as a Hotspot for my Xbox and I used 250 gigs before they shut me down lmao. I didn’t know. They should clarify that they don’t want people using Hotspot more openly. I’m using AT&T towers with the unlimited plan

  22. Heath | | Reply

    I got the $55 plan 2 weeks ago for the 1st time. Was useing hot spot all the time with lower plans before that, I’m from kansas and work in a tiny town in the south east part of the state. Checked my data today and I was at 106GBs lol cuz I use youtube and play my Xbox 1 online all the time. Was working just fine untill today wen I got on youtube it started to lag like a bitch, but so far I can still play games just fine. Had no clue about the hot spot thing breaking their rules untill I called them just a bit ago. So they might be catching on this a lil bit. Use it while you can. I have the newst stylist Android phone.

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      I have heard a lot of similar stories. Just curious, do you know which towers your phone is using? Verizon, ATT, or T-Mobile? I assume Verizon.

  23. Daniel Abare | | Reply

    I had 2 phones on straight talk with mobile hot spot. The lg fiesta 2 that I broke because I broke it an my new phone lg stylos 3. Only problem my phone has a hard time working in my trailer an wants to drop my data at times inside it

  24. Jessica | | Reply

    I have the LG Stylo 2 and had been using the hot spot for months. Last night I lost all data connection and was told I wouldn’t get it back until my new plan took effect. Which would be 2 days from them. Or I could use the plan I had in reserve and get it back immediately. The csr said that I violated the terms and conditions. That there is a 60gb limit to the truly unlimited $55 plan.

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      At 60 GB, they reserve the right to review your data usage. Hotspot is against the terms of service, and can get your data suspended for the remainder of you plan or permanently

  25. Charles | | Reply

    I have had Straight Talk for a few years and been using their $55 Unlimited plan since they started it. I regularly use 80 – 100GB of data a month. I’m a truck driver, so, my entertainment is my phone (Youtube, Netflix, etc). I’ve never been cut off and rarely have an issue with throttling.

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      Cool. Do you tether or use hotspot or do you consume all that data on your just your phone?

    • Karen | | Reply

      Which phone are you using? I need a hot spot for my college kid.

  26. Dustin | | Reply

    It took st 3 months to notice my kids were streaming daily ..cut me off ..had to buy new plan..I argued my phone had a tether option in phone from purchased with it did..its an LG from Wal-Mart..not sure of model..and Verizon towers…I would pay for this feature if it was offered..as no internet or cable is provided to my location

    • Bob Thompson | | Reply

      Yes. many similar reports. I have been trying to find out why they don’t just disable it on their android phones that use the Verizon towers.

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