Tethering: Use your phone’s data connection

Your Surface may be able to use your phone’s Internet connection

Applies to

Surface Book, Surface Pro 4, Surface Pro 3, Surface 3, Surface Pro 2, Surface Pro.

Applies to

Surface 2, Surface RT.

Applies to

Surface Pro 3, Surface 3, Surface Pro 2, Surface Pro.

Applies to

Surface 2, Surface RT.

Operating system:

Before you get started

Sharing your cellular data connection with another device is sometimes called tethering (connecting one device to another).

Before you get set up, here are some things you should know:

  • Sharing your data connection, whether through your phone or through your Surface, could result in extra charges. For more info, see Manage your mobile broadband data usage.
  • By default, tethered and mobile broadband connections are metered. Apps and updates may not download over a metered connection.
  • To share a connection through a phone, tethering must be included with your current phone plan. If you have your Surface connected to a mobile broadband network and want to share that, you can create a mobile hotspot. See Set up a mobile hotspot for details.

Sharing your phone’s Internet connection

For tethering info:

Surface won’t tether wirelessly?

If you're having problems wirelessly tethering your Surface, changing a setting can resolve the problem.

Note
Before you try the next two solutions, be sure that you've turned on Internet sharing with your phone and that you've connected your Surface to the phone through your wireless network.

There are two solutions for this problem:

Switch Airplane mode on and off

Toggling the Airplane mode switch on and off resets the driver that allows your Surface to tether. To do this:

Step 1: Go to Start Windows logo, and select Settings > Network & Internet > Airplane mode.
Step 2: Under Airplane mode, slide the switch from Off to On and then from On to Off.

Install Surface and Windows updates

When updates become available, they are installed automatically, but you can check for updates manually. Here's how:

Step 1: Go to Start Windows logo, and select Settings > Update & security > Windows Update.
Step 2: Select Check for updates. If updates are available, they will install automatically.
You may need to restart your Surface after the updates have installed.

Before you get started

Sharing your cellular data connection with another device is sometimes called tethering (connecting one device to another).
Before you get set up, here are some things you should know:

  • Sharing your data connection, whether through your phone or through your Surface, could result in extra charges. For more info, see Manage your mobile broadband data usage.
  • By default, tethered and mobile broadband connections are metered. Apps and updates may not download over a metered connection. Metered Internet connections: FAQ has more info about this.
  • To share a connection through a phone, tethering must be included with your current phone plan. If you have your Surface connected to a mobile broadband network and want to share that, you can create a mobile hotspot. See Set up a mobile hotspot for details.

Sharing your phone’s Internet connection

For tethering info:

Surface won’t tether wirelessly?

If you recently updated your Surface to Windows 8.1 RT Update 3 and are having issues wirelessly tethering your Surface, changing a setting can resolve the problem. There are two solutions for this issue:

Switch Airplane mode on and off

Toggling the Airplane mode switch on and off resets the driver that allows your Surface to tether. To do this:

Step 1: Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and select Settings.
(If you're using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, and select Settings.)
Step 2: Select Change PC settings > Network > Airplane mode.
Step 3: Under Airplane mode, slide the switch from Off to On and then from On to Off.

Install Surface and Windows updates

When updates become available, they are installed automatically, but you can check to see if any updates are pending and install them yourself. Here's how:

Step 1: Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and select Settings.
Step 2: Select Change PC settings > Update and recovery > Windows Update > Check now.
Step 3: If updates are available, select View details.
Step 4: Choose the updates you want to install, and select Install.
You may need to restart your Surface after the updates have installed.

Before you get started

Sharing your cellular data connection with another device is sometimes called tethering (connecting one device to another).
Before you get set up, here are some things you should know:

  • Sharing your data connection, whether through your phone or through your Surface, could result in extra charges. For more info, see Manage your mobile broadband data usage.
  • By default, tethered and mobile broadband connections are metered. Apps and updates may not download over a metered connection. Metered Internet connections: FAQ has more info about this.
  • To share a connection through a phone, tethering must be included with your current phone plan. If you have your Surface connected to a mobile broadband network and want to share that, you can create a mobile hotspot. See Set up a mobile hotspot for details.

Sharing your phone’s Internet connection

For tethering info:

Surface won’t tether wirelessly?

If you recently updated your Surface to Windows 8.1 and are having issues wirelessly tethering your Surface, changing a setting can resolve the problem. There are two solutions for this issue:

Switch Airplane mode on and off

Toggling the Airplane mode switch on and off resets the driver that allows your Surface to tether. To do this:

Step 1: Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and tap Settings.
(If you're using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, and click Settings.)
Step 2: Tap or click Change PC settings.
Step 3: Tap or click Network, and tap or click Airplane mode.
Step 4: Under Airplane mode, slide the switch from Off to On and then from On to Off.

Install Surface and Windows updates

When updates become available, they are installed automatically, but you can check to see if any updates are pending and install them yourself. Here's how:

Step 1: Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and tap Settings.
Step 2: Tap or click Change PC settings.
Step 3: Tap or click Update and recovery, and tap or click Check now.
Step 4: If updates are available, tap or click View details.
Step 5: Tap or click to select the updates you want to install, and tap or click Install.
You may need to restart your Surface after the updates have installed.

Before you get started

Sharing your cellular data connection with another device is sometimes called tethering (connecting one device to another).
Before you get set up, here are some things you should know:

  • Sharing your data connection, whether through your phone or through your Surface, could result in extra charges. For more info, see Manage your mobile broadband data usage.
  • By default, tethered and mobile broadband connections are metered. Apps and updates may not download over a metered connection. Metered Internet connections: FAQ has more info about this.
  • To share a connection through a phone, tethering must be included with your current phone plan. If you have your Surface connected to a mobile broadband network and want to share that, you can create a mobile hotspot. See Set up a mobile hotspot for details.

Sharing your phone’s Internet connection

For tethering info:

Surface won’t tether wirelessly?

If you recently updated your Surface to Windows RT 8.1 and are having issues wirelessly tethering your Surface, changing a setting can resolve the problem. There are two solutions for this issue:

Switch Airplane mode on and off

Toggling the Airplane mode switch on and off resets the driver that allows your Surface to tether. To do this:

Step 1: Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and tap Settings.
(If you're using a mouse, point to the upper-right corner of the screen, move the mouse pointer down, and click Settings.)
Step 2: Tap or click Change PC settings.
Step 3: Tap or click Network, and tap or click Airplane mode.
Step 4: Under Airplane mode, slide the switch from Off to On and then from On to Off.

Install Surface and Windows updates

When updates become available, they are installed automatically, but you can check to see if any updates are pending and install them yourself. Here's how:

Step 1: Swipe in from the right edge of the screen, and tap Settings.
Step 2: Tap or click Change PC settings.
Step 3: Tap or click Update and recovery, and tap or click Check now.
Step 4: If updates are available, tap or click View details.
Step 5: Tap or click to select the updates you want to install, and tap or click Install.
You may need to restart your Surface after the updates have installed.

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