Personal hotspot isn’t working on your iPhone and you’re not sure why. Personal hotspot lets you turn your iPhone into a Wi-Fi hotspot that other devices can connect to. In this article, I’ll explain why iPhone personal hotspot is not working and show you how to fix the problem for good!
How Do I Set Up Personal Hotspot On My iPhone?
Two things are required to set up a personal hotspot on your iPhone:
- An iPhone running iOS 7 or later.
- A cell phone plan that includes data for mobile hotspot.
If your iPhone and cell phone plan meet the qualifications, check out our other article to learn how to set up personal hotspot. If you’ve already set up personal hotspot, but it’s not working on your iPhone, follow the steps below to fix the problem!
Turn Cellular Data Off And Back On
Personal hotspot uses cellular data to turn your iPhone into a Wi-Fi hotspot. When other devices connect to your personal hotspot and browse the web, they use the cellular data on your cell phone plan. Sometimes turning cellular data off and back on can fix a minor software glitch preventing personal hotspot from working on your iPhone.
Check For Carrier Settings Update
Your wireless carrier and Apple regularly release carrier settings updates to improve your iPhone’s ability to connect to your carrier’s network. Go to Settings -> General -> About to see if a new carrier settings update is available. If one is, a pop-up will appear within about fifteen seconds. If no pop-up appears, then a carrier settings update probably isn’t available.
Restart Your iPhone
Restarting your iPhone is a common solution for a variety of problems. All the programs on your iPhone shut down naturally when you turn it off, which can fix minor software glitches and errors.
To turn off an iPhone 8 or earlier, press and hold the power button until slide to power off appears on the display. Swipe the red and white power icon from left to right to turn off your iPhone. Press and hold the power button again to turn your iPhone back on.
To turn off an iPhone X or newer, simultaneously press and hold either volume button and the side button until slide to power off appears on the display. Slide the red and white power icon from left to right to shut down your iPhone. To turn your iPhone on again, press and hold the side button until the Apple logo appears.
Update iOS On Your iPhone
iPhones running iOS 7 or later are capable of using personal hotspot, as long as its included with your cell phone plan. Outdated versions of iOS can lead to a variety of software problems, so it’s important to always keep your iPhone up to date.
Open Settings and tap General -> Software Update to check if a new iOS update is available. Tap Download and Install if an iOS update is available. Check out our other article if you have any problems updating your iPhone!
Check Your Carrier Account Settings
Even if mobile hotspot is included with your cell phone plan, you sometimes need to turn it on in your account settings on your carrier’s website. Head to your carrier’s website and log into your account. If you see an option to enable mobile hotspot, turn it on.
Reset Your iPhone’s Network Settings
Resetting the network settings on your iPhone erases all of its Cellular, Wi-Fi, APN, and VPN settings and restores them back to factory defaults. Resetting all the Cellular settings to factory defaults could fix a complex software issue if iPhone personal hotspot is not working. Rather than trying to track down that software problem, we’re just completely erasing it from your iPhone!
To reset network settings, open Settings and tap General -> Transfer or Reset iPhone -> Reset. Then, tap Reset Network Settings. You’ll be prompted to tap Reset Network Settings again to confirm your decision. Your iPhone will turn off, perform the reset, and turn back on.
Contact Your Wireless Carrier
If personal hotspot still isn’t working, there’s most likely a problem with your cell phone plan or the hardware of your iPhone. We recommend contacting your wireless carrier before going to the Apple Store. If you go to the Apple Store first, they’ll probably just tell you to talk to your carrier.
If your cell phone plan recently changed, or if it needs to be renewed, it could be the reason why iPhone personal hotspot is not working. Here are the customer support numbers of the four major carriers in the United States:
- AT&T: 1-800-331-0500
- T-Mobile: 1-800-866-2453
- Verizon: 1-800-922-0204
If you have a different wireless carrier, go their name plus “customer support” to find the phone number or website you’re looking for.
Visit The Apple Store
If you’ve contacted your carrier and there’s nothing wrong with your cell phone plan, it’s time to reach out to Apple. You can contact Apple support online, over the phone, or by setting up an appointment at the brick-and-mortar location near you. It’s possible that an antenna inside your iPhone has become damaged, preventing you from using cellular data for a personal hotspot.
It’s Getting Hotspot In Here
Personal hotspot is working again and you can set up your own Wi-Fi hotspot again. Now you’ll know what to do next time iPhone personal hotspot is not working! If you have any other questions, leave them in the comments section below.