One of our favorite iPhone features is about to get some muscle with iPhone iOS 13. HotSpot. Wait. What? That HotSpot? Isn’t HotSpot already a thing on iPhone? Yes. And Apple plans to make it better on iOS 13 and even iPadOS 13.
Apple made HotSpot a must-have component for those of us with iPad or Mac that need an internet connection when there is no nearby Wi-Fi or internet service provider. We use it all the time, and when on the road it makes iPad and Mac-life much easier. Yes, you can ride in a car and do real work on a Mac with a HotSpot on your iPhone.
The newest personal HotSpot should fix our biggest gripe. As it is now, whenever an iPad or Mac– connected to our iPhones via HotSpot– goes to sleep, often the HotSpot connection dies, too. Yes, it’s easy to reconnect, but it’s just something extra to fiddle with. Besides, you know Apple is all about the user experience, right?
Mostly. Have you seen the battery charging connector on the Magic Mouse? Hey, Tim. What’s with that? I’m kinda glad Jony Ive is moving on.
OK, what iOS 13 and iPad 13 bring is what is called persistent HotSpot. Simply put, that means the HotSpot connection to your iPhone or iPad with an LTE data connection will stay on. And that means your Mac or iPad or whatever is connected to your cellphone connection via HotSpot will also stay connected when the devices go to sleep, and that means you still get incoming messages and email.
Getting there is a bit complicated because you have to dig through Settings on iOS 13, but it is intuitive. Select Personal HotSpot in Settings, then select Family Sharing, then toggle Ask For Approval or Automatic. Yes, there are some caveats. This is Apple so there must be a gotcha, right?
Your cellular-connected iPhone or iPad must be on iOS 13 or iPadOS 13. You’ll need Bluetooth on. Wi-Fi, too. And, each device must be signed in to iCloud with the same Apple ID. That will help to prevent nearby moochers from scooping up some of your data.
Nathan and I are on the road often and we travel with a full load of equipment so anything that keeps all our Apple gear connected is much appreciated. HotSpot 2.0 will help.