How To Enable Tethering On The Nexus 4 and Nexus 5

Having the ability to be able to turn your mobile into a Wi-Fi hotspot can be a very useful feature, and luckily this is very easy to do on the Nexus 4 and Nexus 5 and should only take about 30 seconds to do. Below you can see the simple steps to take to enable the built-in feature as well as a step-by-step walkthrough. I am using a Nexus 4 (bought via the Play Store) using Jelly Bean 4.2.1. I have also tested this on the Nexus 5 running KitKat 4.4, in which the steps are the same

Settings>Data usage (More)>Tethering & portable hotspot>Set up Wi-Fi hotspot

Firstly, to get to your settings simply hold and slide your finger from the top of the screen downwards

Nexus 4 Tether

Now select the icon at the top right corner

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Select Settings

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Under Data usage select More

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Now select Tethering & portable hotspot

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Select Set up Wi-Fi hotspot

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This is where you are able to change your SSID (Service set identification), type of security and password. By default the SSID will be AndroidAP. Change this to what ever you want your hotspot to be called. If you want to leave the security to Open you can. but bear in mind that anyone will be able to access the internet via your mobile if you have your Wi-Fi hotspot left on. It’s best to add security to it, so select WPA2 PSK (orWPA PSK) You can change any of these settings whenever you wish.

Nexus 4 Tether 7

Now create a password with at least 8 characters (try to use upper and lowercase along with some numbers and/or symbols) Now hit Save

Nexus 4 Tether 8

Once you hit Save you will be taken back to the Tethering & portable hotspot window, which is still disabled

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Simply check the box to enable your hotspot and away you go

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A few things to bear in mind are to check that you are able to use tethering with your data plan, which shouldn’t be an issue with most, but it’s best to check. I am using Three (UK) as my pay-monthly carrier and haven’t had any issues yet, but not all suppliers are the same. If you are on a limited data plan then try to restrict how much you use this feature as it’s quite easy to chew through data. Also, remember to disable your hotspot once you are finished using it, especially if you elected to use an Open connection when you set it up, allowing anyone to use your data.


  • Mike

    Thanks for the concise instructions! It worked like a charm!

    • Richard Gailey

      Hi Mike, glad it helped.

  • Marmen

    Can anybody on T-Mobile comment? Is it allowed on a prepaid plan?

    • XNYC

      I have had no issues with T-Mobile on their $30/month prepaid plan, tethering occasionally (unllimited data). However I had one instance when after leaving it on for a long time it blocked me and directed me to purchase a hotspot & data plan (!@!? ). This disappeared after stopping and restarting the Nexus.

  • KJ

    Hi Richard,

    Thank you for the detail walk through. Its really very help & simple since you have shared screen shots. I recently got nexus 4 & was looking for help on couple of things and tethering/hotspot was one of them.

    i was wondering if you could help/guide me with the following as well:-

    – can add/download ringtones & set them for incoming calls & other notifications?
    – is it possible to set-up different levels of vibration? for example while i am in office i am want to set up a mild vibration vs when i am at playground/outdoor & want to set-up a louder vibration (i know that we can set-up ring tones when outdoor, but i wanted to set up a louder vibration)

    – how do i ‘eject’ USB connection (once i am done transferring files etc.)? When i right click on ‘KJ Nexus 4 (my phone name)’ i dont see an option ‘eject’ or remove like we when we plugged in pen/portable drives?

    Thank You

    • Richard Gailey

      Hi KJ,

      For changing the default notification, you will need to locate a ringtone or sound file that you want. Then go Settings>Sound>Default Sound Notification. Complete the action (choosing the file) by either Media Storage or if you have it installed (very recommended and free on The Play Store) ES File Explorer. In this screenshot, I am using ES File Explorer (ESFE). Simply browse to your Notifications folder, select your tune and that’s it.

      Alternatively, you can place the tune/sound file directly into the Nexus 4 when connected to your PC. You’ll also see a separate Ringtones folder as well.

      As far as changing the Vibration levels, that will require a rooted device and a paid app (as far as I know). If you do have a rooted device then check out Trinity Kernel Toolbox which costs £2.29 and is on The Play Store. I haven’t used it myself, but it seems to do what you require.

      For rejecting the Nexus 4, I also couldn’t see a safe way to eject the device (Windows 7) although I assumed that it is optimized for quick removal. You will see when your files have been copied over, so just remove the connecting USB once you are done.

      Sorry about the haphazard way of inputting the screenshot URL’s, but can’t access the editor at the moment. Hope that helps?

  • Rumplesticskin

    What about tesco mobile? will that work with like 2/5 GB of data?

  • Rumplesticskin

    On xbox live?

  • Athro POS

    Thanks a lot…

  • Anonymous

    Very nice, thanks for the effort

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