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  1. #1
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    personal hotspot on iPad

    I've tried two different carriers - RedPocket and USMobile - that both claim to support hotspot/tethering with GSM on iOS and in both cases have been completely unable to activate it on my iPad Mini 5 (software fully up-to-date). Clicking on "Set Up Personal Hotspot" always gives me this message: "To enable personal hotspot on this account, visit (a URL for AT&T appears here but I'm not allowed to type it out apparently)"

    I've already wasted lots of time with both companies' tech support. Both claim that hotspot is enabled and should work. Their go-to solution seems to be for me to edit my APN settings by going to "Settings - Cellular - Cellular Data Options - Cellular Network" and are invariably unable to comprehend that the "Cellular Network" option simply doesn't exist on my iPad. Is this a setting available on iPhones that is missing on the iPad? Most of the information I can find online also refers to this option and I'm flummoxed that it's completely non-existent.

  2. #2
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    personal hotspot on iPad

    Is your iPad network unlocked, was it refurbished, and was it purchased outright or from a carrier store?

    My iPad is older, but I have to turn ON Cellular Data before other options appear. If that doesn’t work, you can try a network reset. General -> reset -> reset network settings.

    But a lot of these admin type options are limited by your carrier. If I put a different sim in any of my devices, different options come up, and that is dictated by the carrier. But a network reset might help with that if they’ve sent a push to your device.

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    Last edited by minij; 08-09-2020 at 10:13 PM. Reason: Providing additional info.
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  3. #3
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    It was bought brand new directly from Apple, and yes it's unlocked. I've never heard of an iPad being tied to a specific carrier, at least not anytime recently.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by snail22 View Post
    It was bought brand new directly from Apple, and yes it's unlocked. I've never heard of an iPad being tied to a specific carrier, at least not anytime recently.
    Like I said, mine is older. I added to my original comment, that might help you.


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  5. #5
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    That makes sense about different options for different carriers, it just seems strange that the tech support for both carriers insist this option should exist when it doesn't. At this point I've done more network resets than I can count.

    So you're saying you do have the "Cellular Network" settings option on your iPad? Are you also able to enable hotspot? What carrier and network do you use?

  6. #6
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    For info only, all iPads are unlocked regardless of where they were purchased. The only exception I have ever heard of is a carrier in Japan sold theirs with a carrier lock for a while.

    My RedPocket sim will not even display the Personal Hotspot option if it is set as the data carrier though on my iPhone 11 Pro Max.

  7. #7
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    My iPad unlimited plan (prepaid, $34.99/month) on ATT doesn't allow hotspotting. The only time I have ever seen the hotspot option was when I had Unlimited Plus(?) on ATT Postpaid a couple years ago. It was supposed to match the corresponding phone. I made a change in plan, it was supposed to match, but in spite of hours on tech support I was never able to get it to stick past a month renewal so I gave up.

    So it doesn't surprise me when it doesn't work on a MVNO. Yet another separation layer.
    iPhone 11 is my current primary phone. But I have more phones than lines. Back to only Prepaid with the changes in the economy.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by snail22 View Post
    That makes sense about different options for different carriers, it just seems strange that the tech support for both carriers insist this option should exist when it doesn't. At this point I've done more network resets than I can count. So you're saying you do have the "Cellular Network" settings option on your iPad? Are you also able to enable hotspot? What carrier and network do you use?
    what plan do you have ?? and does it include hotspot use ?? not all plans do allow hotspot use. you can setup your hotspot by following the instructions here - https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204023

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by october262 View Post
    what plan do you have ?? and does it include hotspot use ?? not all plans do allow hotspot use. you can setup your hotspot by following the instructions here - https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204023
    Right now the prepaid one that doesn't offer hotspot. I had only wanted it for occasional use like when at hotel. Too often wi-fi at hotels flakey.

    If I couldn't get it to work, I didn't want to continue to spend the extra money on postpaid. So I went prepaid, and for several months moved my iPad to the $10 plan on T-Mobile. I bought a hotspot, so in case of emergency I'll just move the SIM over.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by snail22 View Post
    That makes sense about different options for different carriers, it just seems strange that the tech support for both carriers insist this option should exist when it doesn't. At this point I've done more network resets than I can count.

    So you're saying you do have the "Cellular Network" settings option on your iPad? Are you also able to enable hotspot? What carrier and network do you use?
    I do, once I turn ON cellular data, but no option to set the APN within Cellular Network. I’m on the grandfathered free for life 200MB/month Tmo plan. And I can turn on the hotspot.

    That said, on my phone with Mint sim, I can’t set the APN anymore. I can only set the APN on my Truphone sim.

    So if your carrier is insistent it should work, then make sure you’re on a plan that allows for hotspot and confirm with them they programmed your sim correctly for that freature.


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  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by kevink1 View Post
    Right now the prepaid one that doesn't offer hotspot. I had only wanted it for occasional use like when at hotel. Too often wi-fi at hotels flakey.

    If I couldn't get it to work, I didn't want to continue to spend the extra money on postpaid. So I went prepaid, and for several months moved my iPad to the $10 plan on T-Mobile. I bought a hotspot, so in case of emergency I'll just move the SIM over.
    Wait you’re asking why a setting isn’t available on a sim that doesn’t have that feature enabled anyway? I think you just answered your own question.


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