How to use your BlackBerry 10 smartphone as a mobile hotspot

Mobile Hotspot
By James Richardson on 11 Apr 2014 11:37 am EDT

Having the ability to instantly turn your BlackBerry device into a mobile hotspot can certainly come in handy. For most folk that utilize this function I would imagine it's to access the web on either a laptop or tablet - unless of course you are using a PlayBook and can just use BlackBerry Bridge.

There may occasionally be the scenario where you are out with a bunch of friends and for whatever reason they can't get a signal on their smartphone but you can. Just switch on your mobile hotspot and your buddies can connect to your BlackBerry and use its data.

How much you actually use the feature may well come down to the data plan you have with your carrier. Clearly, if you only have 500mb per month for example you'll want to keep things to a minimum, but as more and more of us seem to be on plans with larger allowances these days it's the perfect back up plan if you need to use it.

Switching on your Mobile Hotspot is super easy. Just follow these simple steps:

  • Open Settings - Pull down from top bezel
  • Select Network and Connections
  • Choose Mobile Hotspot and toggle on and you're done

You can choose a password to ensure only the people you want to use your connection can do so and in addition you'll be shown how long the hotspot has been active for and how much data has been sent and received - clever stuff. You will also see a hotspot icon at the top left of your display so you'll know when it is on or off.

Many existing BlackBerry 10 users will probably be aware of this option but for newbies it's a handy tool to have built into BlackBerry 10.

Reader comments

How to use your BlackBerry 10 smartphone as a mobile hotspot


You are exactly right - something to be aware of. I can't believe that some carriers can double charge you for using your data - makes me boil!
Once for the data plan to begin with.
Second for using your data plan from another device.
Its the same damned data plan!!!

Don't confuse hotspot with "tethering".

Not the same thing.

I am sure a carrier could disable your ability to hotspot, mine does not. (Rogers Canada)


AT&T disables hot spot too. If I want to use my phone as a hot spot, then I need to change my plan to allow my device to operate as such.

Posted via CB10

I have AT&T with 10GB plan and wi-fi hotspot all the time with my iPod Touch with no restriction or additional data charges from AT&T.

No, I understand. On Bell Canada, I had my wife use mobile hot spot on her 9900 due to our flaky home (rural) internet. She was on a work phone, and was dinged large fees, and was told that 'mobile hot spot was not included in her plan'. I could not believe it.
Now to be fair, I have not looked into the details, but still I think one has to be aware.
Interestingly, I'm on Bell at work with a z30, and the option for mobile hot spot is not there.

The biggest note to make on this is why does CB keep referring to playbook. It's dead. Leave it there

Posted via CB10

I'm on Telus with 6 GB/mo, and I use the hotspot just about every day for my Windows tablet. Works great, and I've never exceeded the limit, even with the odd video.

Often when I'm in coffee shops with free wifi, their Internet is so slow, I switch to my hotspot anyway. It's much faster.

Posted via CB10

CB app adds "rel=nofollow" at the end to discourage spammers, but that causes links to break because of the space character in between...

"No Q10?" -> "Buy from Chen... "

Just call verizion. Quoted this article but was told if he activated hotspot for free a would loss unlimited data. Or I could pay $30 for the service. Add to my unlimited iPhone no prob. BlackBerry gets short stick again!!!

VZW ("Big Red") is a money grubbing carrier. Admittedly, they have one of the best services. :-(
TMO and HotSpot features work beautifully together at no extra cost. (yeah, TMO!)

I believe Verizon only charges unlimited data customers for mobil hotspot. For those of us with data limits, it's an included service, because if the hotspot causes us to go over our limit (a very real possibility), we get charged for the additional data. Verizon gets its $$ either way.

Typed on my Q10, SQN100-2, OS

It makes perfect sense to not allow free hotspotting on unlimited plans. Essentially you could become an ISP to numerous devices all for the cost of your cellular plan. At least Verizon is fair; AT&T charges an additional fee to access limited data.

Edit: Upon further review, it looks like AT&T may now allow it without additional fees. I'll have to check into this further...

They don't disable it on their More Everything plans.

However, beware if you accept a "Loyalty" plan from retention. They WILL disable the feature when you change plans.

A little escreen jiggery pokery will turn it back on though.

Posted via CB10

If you use it often you can also add the hotspot toggle to your quick settings pull down menu.

PROUD to be the 1%! Z10 on T-Mobile, 32 GB PlayBook - Posted via CrackBerry 10

Yeah they are great but only drawback is the speed and i don't think they ever going to have lte

 Slicing using my 

Not really. Two different ways of doing the same thing. One is wireless and can connect several devices. The other is a wired connection to one other device.

Posted via CB10

Mobile hotspot turns your phone into basically a wireless router. Other wireless devices can connect so they have access to the Internet. It just all goes through your mobile carrier data line (which you pay for).

Internet tethering is a direct wired connection between your phone and one other device, like a laptop, usually with a USB cable. Your phone is more like a direct modem in that case. Data still goes through your carrier. Internet tethering has been around for BlackBerry phones for years. My old Pearl 8100 had that capability.

Mobile Hotspot is newer in only the last few years.

Posted via CB10

Internet tethering is achieved by Bluetooth as well via the BT PAN profile. Because of the shorter range provided by BT, it's probably more secure. Speeds? They're the same because the throughput speeds on BT v3 is faster than any congested LTE system right now. What you're referring to is DUN (Dial-Up Networking) which is no longer offered on BB10. Mobile hotspot, or wi-fi tethering, has been around for as long as BT PAN (Personal Area Networking). Windows Mobile devices used the WMWiFiRouter app to accomplish this long before there were any Android devices. As tablets started becoming ubiquitous, the ad-hoc methods used by WM and Joiku (Symbian) were made obsolete because newer devices supported infrastructure APs only. Most newer phones have mobile hotspot capability built in but are usually crippled by the carriers. I prefer Bluetooth because the battery drain is much less and it's easier to set up.

I have unlimited Verizon but it appears I have to get with Verizon to enable this feature.

 BlackBerry Q10 

Same here with Sprint where I'm on an unlimited plan. When I needed it, called em up had em turn it on, and it worked pretty flawless. It's limited to 2Gb/mon and it was a 10 or 20 bucks extra.

Posted via CB10

On virgin mobile UK and have used this many times in meetings where other people haven't got Internet access so I've given them access to my BlackBerry hotspot.

Am thinking I don't really need my dongle with this feature as I have unlimited mobile data

Posted via CB10

I heard that when you use mobile hotspot it uses double data because It has to receive the data from the carrier and then send it to the other device... anyone know if this is true or just a myth?

Posted via CB10

That's a myth. The carrier only sees, and cares about, what goes through their pipes.

A direct wireless connection between your phone and another phone/laptop/tablet/whatever is invisible to them. And really, they only care about the data that travels into and out of your phone to their towers taking up their bandwidth.

Posted via CB10

The outgoing network connection is a WAN type connection, between you phone and PC or other connected device it's a LAN (Local Area Network) connection, which will not be counted towards your data allowance again

"No Q10?" -> "Buy from Chen... "

So does that mean you don't count both "Data Sent" and "Data Received" on your Mobile Hotspot page towards your monthly bandwidth?

Posted via CB10

Interesting...when I was using Android, I officially signed up for this service through Verizon. Yes, they charged me extra to use the service I was already paying for. The interesting thing was that at the same time I downloaded and purchased an app (which the name escapes me) and it worked great while the Verizon service was slow and buggy. Oh well...

Posted via CB10

been using this on T-Mobile for years and works great.
I just upgraded from the Z10 to the Z30 and now I am having issues with it. On a fresh reboot it will work just fine, then it stops working after a while, I then have to reboot the phone for it to work again.

Instead, try turning off and on your antenna. After the antenna comes back on and connects to your carrier (4G LTE, I assume), turn on the mobile hotspot.

Hope it helps, Damiand.

I have done that before and it did not help. I am able to connect to the hotspot but not able to surf. I can surf on the phone but not on anything that connects to the wifi. The only thing that seems to work is a reboot.

I've had that or similar problem. Just play with turning off data service only, mobile network, go on flight mode for a few seconds, or just restart the hotspot. Find out what fixes it for your particular case.

Sometimes another device is connected to my Z10 hotspot on the WLAN, but does not actually have any outgoing connection, Opening a webpage on the Z10 often fixes that, afterwards browsing then works on the connected devices, too. (tired, sorry)

"No Q10?" -> "Buy from Chen... "

Even if you have a PlayBook and can use Bridge, this feature is way better. Bluetooth is slower and many things do not work over Bridge by design.

Everything works when you just use mobile hotspot and it's faster :)

Posted via CB10

I have a 6GB pkg so I use hot spot every day at work for my windows tablet. Love it and so fast on LTE!

Posted via CB10

Just to be safe, call your carrier first and ask if there's an extra charge for this feature. I have an unlimited data plan from Sprint and I've been with them for a long time. Last time I checked with them they told me there is an additional charge. It's ridiculous, although I don't use this feature. But I think it's stupid to charge an extra.

" Initiated from my QNX10 "

I am with TMo and I don't have issues, it's great. My cousin and use it all the time. When I am in Mexico, where she lives, she turns it on her Z10 and when she is in the U.S. I turn mine on. It's great!

Posted via CB10

When are we going to have a magazine for BlackBerry smartphone just like iPhone and Android where people can learn blackberry os. I would love to see it happen sooner than later. BlackBerry community is very helpful but we supposed to have books or magazines available with each software releases or upgrade including new phones. I from South Africa and whenever I go to CNA an outlet with all kinds of magazines ranging from health to beauty, games to software, gadgets to accessories I don't see any thing for blackberry os. For those who are into publishing and writhing of books and handout please do something for the sake of blackberry and their die hard user.

Why a magazine when we have Crackberry? Just point/tell them to go to Crackberry.. the best BlackBerry resource anywhere.

Yes I've been SQUIRCLFIED!

There is way to activate your mobile hot spots function without going through your carrier.

I think it is fundamentally wrong to charge twice on the data usage.

I used to have this option but it looks like Telus has removed it, when I installed the first 10.2.1 update.
Anyone with Telus still have access?

I'm using a hotspot on my Z10 on an old "real" unlimited 2-dollar-a-day Optus plan. The new "unlimited" 2dollardays plan only allows 500 or 1000MB per day, but you can have 4G.

I rather have more data, real unlimited on 3G+, Optus doesn't have any 4G services in Tropical North Queensland yet, Townsville maybe, I don't know.

"No Q10?" -> "Buy from Chen... "

They also limit hotspot throughput to 2Gb per month. Guess they're fearing excessive download through devices typically connected to a hotspot such as computers. So yeah, in reality an unlimited plan is based on a usage mix and the assumption the average person is normally getting nowhere near excessive usage that the plan in theory should cover.

Posted via CB10

Fudge.. that was supposed to be in response to all3n7's comment. Not time to fix. Hope he sees it.

Posted via CB10

I use it for my home Internet. Main problem is the phone gives out IP addresses to all connected devices, and it's not very good at it. Best to give fixed IP addresses to all connecting devices.

Posted via CB10

I've used the Mobile HotSpot a few times on my z10. Please be cognizant that when activating the HotSpot, you may want to have the phone remain plugged into a power source. HotSpot drains the battery HUGE. I'm sure it is like that for other phones as well, but I don't have a point of reference.

Thanks for the tip. Of course in times of emergency an outlet may not be present.

Posted via CB10

I just tried this on my AT&T Z10 and worked flawless wish I would of know this 2 days ago when my home Internet was down! Now I know thanks Crackberry users!

This is standard stuff on any modern smartphone. Even my old, totally outdated Gingerbread Android has got it.

Zzzzwiped from a Zedevice....

Free tethering or free Hotspot..... that's what I love about android, the ability to configure it without having to pay extra

Posted via CB10

Cool, I can see this being useful especially in emergencies. Anyone know if Verizon restricts this?

Posted via CB10

Good article. But understanding the carrier response is important. Heat I think is more troublesome for me is actually accessing hot spots and Internet sites with a minimum of trouble. BlackBerry does not remember password s et.

Posted via CB10

On MTS in Manitoba and they disable this feature , too bad as I have unlimited data.

Brought to you by the letter Z and the number 10

I have a Z30 with MTS in Manitoba. My hot spot feature works fine. Worked fine on my Z10 as well. No "add on" either. Just normal data plan.

Posted via CB10

I wish I could use the hotspot but since I still have unlimited data with Verizon I refuse to pay for it. I find it easier to download file and just transfer them

Posted via CB10

I was traveling in the UK last month for 3 weeks and didn't have a roaming contract so I purchased a Samsung Galaxy Youth phone when I got there for £29 and then paid £10 for a pay as you go service that had 300 talking minutes unlimited UK text and 3GB data plan which I used as hot spot for my BlackBerry. This gave me full Internet access while I was there on the road. Of course I had WiFi access when I got back to my room, so this was only needed while moving around.

My carrier (Rogers) wanted to charge me $100 for 100 MB Data roaming

Go figure...

Posted via CB10

Here in HK we have unlimited plans and Hotspot van be used freely.
I use it quite a bit on my Z30 and my wife on her Q10.
We use it when out with the kids to stream kids videos etc. when we are in restaurants for example.

I also use it when mates are in town to give Internet access.

I think it is great but it is sometimes pretty "scary" how super hot my Z30 gets when on Hotspot...!
Anybody else has the phenomenon?

Posted via CB10 / Z30

Use my z10 often as a hotspot. Included within my VZW 6 gig data plan cost. Works well in 4g LTE areas. Can hook 10 devices to it .

Works very well! Use it couple times a week for my buddies iPhone... ya that's right. His iPhone didn't get signal on the mountain where I had 3 bars... Long Live Blackberry!

Posted via CB10

I discovered I could use it months ago with a thousand Naira or $6 for 3GB a month or if you exhaust it before then, it auto roll. Isn't that wonderful?

Posted via CB10

I have been using this feature to the max as my wife is having her Ipad and my data plan is unlimited so whenever we go out I will be her ISP.. :)

Posted via CBten using my Qten's awesome keyboards!

I love that feature. I have 2GB a month on verizon, but I have this tiny mobile hotspot that I connect my phone to and I've not even used part of my data! turning on your mobile hotspot is a very good idea though.

Posted via CB10

Carriers cant tell if you using your hotspot on a blackberry.

This was also confirmed by tmobile - ee

Not sure about other phones

Posted via CB10

What is even worse is if you are on AT&T like I am and you are grandfathered into an unlimited plan, AT&T won't let you use the hotspot function!! I am so sick of then punishing me for not switching to a limited plan.

Posted via CB10

I use it at work like all colleagues and we all have same problems which occurs sporadically :
- When a call/sms is received, the hotspot disconnects itself (this happens frequently )
- still connected, the attached device (pc) looses the internet.
For the above cases, the only way to restore the normal usage is to restart the BB :(
Devices firmware
Could it be a carrier issue ?

On extra charge for Hot Spot. Use HS all the time with wifi only iPad flight planning and latest av wx, filing, etc. Great function! Love TMO and z10....iPad sucks.

"Dogs bark but the caravan moves on."

I am virtual company, working from various different locations. The hotspot capability makes it easy to connect my laptop to the internet when no Wifi! Brilliant!

Posted via CB10

I'm on Verizon and I have a grandfathered unlimited plan. If I activate the hotspot it automatically cancels my unlimited plan. It sucks. I wish a developer would build an App like Androids Foxfi. I'd pay good money for it.

Posted via CB10

I've been using the Hotspot feature from Day 1 (usually around 3 - 4 hours everyday). Does it affect the battery life? I don't use the Hotspot feature as often now but I think my Q10's battery is not as efficient people say it is.

Posted via CB10