Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Telecommuting Essentials: When Internet Goes Down - Use Your Smartphone Hotspot

As an avid telecommuter, I recently realized that many of my friends, co-workers and colleagues do not realize the full power of the technology that they wield every day! 

I quickly began figuring this out when my business coach's internet access shut down and she couldn't contact her clients.  She went down the street to a FedEx Center to use their computer and let us know that her internet service would be down for a couple of days.  Even more recently, a friend went MIA from Facebook for a week because her internet service was down.

My question to these problems are . . . wait, you both have smart phones?!  

It seems that we are walking around clueless of our own power and what we have in our pockets.  Did you know that if you have a smartphone with a data plan, you can create a WiFi Hotspot?  This WiFi hotspot can let you share your phone's data connection with a tablet, a laptop or even a desktop computer.  Which means, if your primary internet connection goes down for any reason, you can use your smartphone as an internet provider instead.  It's called wireless tethering and it's a great tool to know about and use.

If you are even thinking of working from home, you should learn to master this little concept, tool and opportunity.

Okay, before I give you instructions on how to do this.  Be warned:
  • You use much more data at a faster rate on your laptop or tablet, so you really need to be aware of your data usage.  You don't want to go over your allotted data usage limits.  Usually, your service provider will send you a little text or e-mail when you use up a certain amount of data usage, but it's best if you monitor this yourself.  In the Settings Feature of every phone, there is a place where your phone will tell you how much data you used and what is left for the month.  Check this often!
  • DO NOT stream HD Video through your smartphone hotspot!  HD Video eats up data faster than a SUV goes through gasoline. Just don't do it!
  • If you are in a business or have a telecommuting job that requires reliable internet access, you should definitely think about calling your service provider and asking about unlimited data rates. The ability to create a WiFi hotspot could be a job-saver for you. If you are self-employed (own your own business) this extra expense could be written off as a tax deduction (legitimate business expense).  This particular expense is worth it, in my opinion.
Turning on your WiFi Hotspot through your smartphone is different for every device, so my instructions on doing this may be a little different for your particular device.  Google your particular phone and operating system and the term "wi-fi hotspot" to find accurate instructions on how to turn on your WiFi Hotspot.

Turning on your iPhone 5 (OS 7) Hotspot
  • Go to Settings
  • Choose either [Cellular] or [Mobile Data]
  • Select Personal Hotspot
  • Personal Hotspot  (flip ON - Your button indicator should be green)
  • It will give you a password [but you can configure your own]
  • The Hotspot name will be whatever your phone is called
  • Below WiFi Password are instructions on how you can connect to your hotspot using WiFi, Bluetooth or USB cable.

Turning on your Android Hotspot
With an Android, you might have to play around a little because each one is different.  I tried this on a three different friend's android phones and turning on the WiFi Hotspot was different on each one.

  • System Settings
  • under wireless and networks go to "More Settings"
  • Mobile Hotspot [toggle ON]
  • Select: Tethering and/or Portable Hotspot
  • Hit the toggle next to portable WiFi Hotspot to activate
  • Once it's activated, tap on the text to the LEFT of the toggle
  • Takes you to the mobile tethering section
  • Tap on CONFIGURE button in button right
  • Set the name, password and protection type (I recommend WPA2 PSK) of WiFi hotspot.
To help you further, I found other articles that have useful information about creating a WiFi Hotspot with your smartphone:

Wiki-How: How to Make your IPhone a HotSpot

How to Turn on WiFi HotSpot Internet Sharing

Hotspot: Share Your Phone's Mobile Date with Other Devices

 Stay powerful and influential my friends!

Do me a favor . . . Click one of the icons below and share this article with friends! Leave a COMMENT by clicking on the little orange "comment" below right by "written by Telemill" notation. It's the little things you do that make the biggest difference. Thanks.


  1. Saved my life a few times crunching out contracts for offers with deadlines. I also used it with my Blu-ray Dvd player to watch Netflix, lol.

  2. Ok kiddies, don't try the Netflix streaming at home, very dangerous to your pocketbook!

  3. Hi Telemill, I have been trying to start a telecommuting job for sometime now without success... And out came your post from nowhere about telecommuting, and couldn't help reaching out to you for support... I will love to discuss this with you

    1. Hi Telemill, I have been trying to start a telecommuting job for sometime now without success... And out came your post from nowhere about telecommuting, and couldn't help reaching out to you for support... I will love to discuss this with you

    2. Hi Austin, I sent your a link to my blog post that list a couple of dozen companies that usually have telecommuting jobs available. I hope you got it and I hope it helped. I'm always open to talking to ANYONE about work-from-home/telecommuting ideas and opportunities. Drop me a line at

  4. hardware based video conferencing as the industries which are relying on video communication are now switching to software based video conferencing. As the recent surveys conducted by Gartner and Wainhouse, it is evident that in mere future all hardware based video conferencing will be replaced by software solution.


Let me know what you think! Really, I am interested.