HotSpot using iPhone 5 only with 256KB SIM Cards

iPhone Tethering is a technique in which an iPhone is used as a wireless modem to provide Internet access to a computer or other Wi-Fi-enabled device, like an iPad or iPod touch.

Tethering is a general technique available on many cell phones and smartphones that can access the Internet. With the right software and data plan from a cellphone carrier, it allows the user to connect their phone to a computer and use the phone’s 3G Internet connection to provide wireless, always-on connectivity to the computer. The iPhone supports tethering via Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and USB.

Tethered connections are generally slower than broadband or Wi-Fi connections, but are more portable. Tethering also often requires a monthly data plan subscription in addition to the standard phone contract.

To use iPhone tethering, you must have an iPhone 3GS or higher, running iOS 4 or higher, with a data plan that supports tethering.

While tethering is the general name for this functionality, Apple’s implementation of it, and how its onscreen iOS functions are labeled, is called Personal Hotspot.

Since I took the iPhone 5, i saw a very strange thing : i can’t using any more the HotSpot feature. Basically, I can activate the HotSpot from Settings / General / Cellular (or Network) / Personal HotSpot without any problems. But, when I try to connect another device to my iPhone, the HotSpot menu disappears at all. I’m using a NanoSIM Vodafone 128 KB.

I tried to talk with my service provider (Vodafone Italy), I tried to talk with my local Apple Care, but nobody knows what could be the problem. Yesterday I used a H3G Italy Nano SIM Card (256 KB) and everything worked perfectly. So, why my HotSpot disappeared?

Simple : because Vodafone Italy has restricted this feature for 128 KB SIM Cards. In order to be used the HotSpot feature, I have to upgrade my Nano SIM Card to NanoSIM 256 KB.

IF you have a 256 KB SIM Card , there are two way to restore the HotSpot menu :

The easy way

Some cases of disappearing Personal Hotspot can be solved very simply: by just turning Personal Hotspot back on. To do that:

  • Tap the Settings app
  • Tap General
  • Tap Network
  • Tap Personal Hotspot (or Enable Personal Hotspot, depending on which appears)
  • Move the Slider to On.

The hard way

In some cases, though, the problem is more complex: the Personal Hotspot menu isn’t there at all! In that case, do this:

  • Tap Settings
  • Tap General
  • Scroll all the way to the bottom and tap Reset
  • Tap Reset Network Settings
  • This will reset any of the networking-related settings on your iPhone that you may have changed. The iPhone will restart and, when it does, Personal Hotspot should once again be available in the Network section of Settings.

The HardCore way

There are many carriers that are asking extra money for this feature, especially in United States. For example both AT&T and Verizon, the iPhone carriers in the U.S., offer data plans that include tethering starting at an additional US$20/month over the user’s existing data plan. AT&T’s unlimited data plan is not available for users with tethering enabled.

 IF you DON’T have a 256 KB SIM Card , there only one way to restore the HotSpot menu :

The easy way

Ask your service provider for a replacement. Some of them are asking for a small fee, but most of them are replacing free of charge your SIM card.

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    Cristian Iosub