hotspotting

Can I use a smartphone with my home security system?

Samsung Galaxy S10E

Episode 1615

David from Whittier, CA

David has a vacation home and has WiFi cameras in it to view remotely. His problem is that when the service goes down, it could be days before it gets repaired. Could he use a cellphone and TING? Leo says that cellphones can be used as a "hotspot" and they can use their data plan to reach you when you need to view it. The question is, would TING let you do that? Other mobile services do, but they charge you and cameras use a lot of bandwidth. So check to see if they only work on movement. In principle, that could work.

Can I Watch YouTubeTV With Chromecast?

chromecast

Episode 1581

Tony from Riverside, CA

When Tony goes camping with his RV, he'd like to broadcast YouTube TV from his phone to his TV. Leo says that in theory, Chromecast will work because he's connected via WiFi. However, it requires being on the same WiFi network, so if the phone is using WiFi, it can't really do that because he will need internet for the Chromecast. Getting a "MyFi" router may be the solution, but it would have a separate cellular connection. But the good news is, it also has its own bandwidth data allotment. Get a MyFi from your carrier, then the phone can join that, and the Chromecast can be on it.

Can I still stream music if I cancel my internet service?

Phone and computer

Episode 1557

Alan from Jacksonville, FL

Alan is trying to cut the cord on his internet. He wants to know if he can use Bluetooth with his music service. Leo says no, Bluetooth only works up to 30 feet away. He could cut the cable, but he'll still need to pay for internet access somehow. He could rely on his phone's internet access and stream his music from there. He could also put his phone in "hotspot" mode and run the laptop through that.

How can I add LTE to my tablet?

Cellular tower

Episode 1540

David from Florida

David has a tablet that he wants to add LTE internet access to. Can he do that? Leo says that it supports Wi-Fi, so he can use it with a MiFi card and connect that way. He can also hotspot with his mobile phone, depending on whether or not his carrier supports it. But he'll probably have to pay extra for that privilege. Leo also uses a Google Fi card with his tablet. They work in a lot of different devices.

How can I turn my smartphone into a hotspot?

Episode 1536

Mark from Los Angeles, CA

Mark wants to use his Android phone as a hotspot. Leo says that it's under the Internet settings under "Hotspot and Tethering." His phone carrier must support it, usually for an extra charge. But he's having issues using any security with a password. Leo says that's not good. It shouldn't be disabled. Leo wonders if that phone doesn't support WPA2. None is not a good choice. If there's WEP, that wouldn't be great, but it's better than nothing. But he'll ideally want WPA2 with PSK (pre shared key).

How can I make my phone hotspot mode secure?

Wi-Fi

Episode 1536

Mark from Los Angeles, CA

Mark wants to use his Android phone as a hotspot. Leo says that it's under the Internet settings under "Hotspot and Tethering." And his phone carrier must support it, usually for an extra charge. But he's having issues using any security with a password. Leo says that's not good. It shouldn't be disabled. Leo wonders if that phone doesn't support WPA2. None is not a good choice. If there's WEP, that wouldn't be great, but it's better than nothing. He'll ideally want WPA2 with PSK (pre shared key).

Why are the maps on my iPad so inaccurate?

Apple iPad

Episode 1530

Dave from Sarasota, FL

Dave loves to drive when he travels, but the most recent car he has doesn't have a CarPlay option. How can he use an iPad as a CarPlay alternative for maps? Leo says a Wi-Fi iPad doesn't have GPS and as such, the maps are going to be inaccurate. Wi-Fi does triangulation of Wi-Fi signals that it can read, whereas GPS uses location based on a triangulation of GPS signals and cellular towers, which is far more accurate. He'd be better off using an iPad that has LTE.

How can I stream to my TV from my phone?

Google Chromecast

Episode 1510

Dave from Hermosa Beach, CA

Dave has a mobile phone and he wants to know how he can stream to his TV from it. Leo says to get the Google Chromecast. This will allow him to pull up a video stream on his phone, and then hand it off to the Chromecast to put it on the TV. He'll need internet and Wi-Fi to make it work. If all his internet access is through his phone, then he could use a hotspot with his TV if it supports that, and then Chromecast that way. But he'll take a bandwidth hit on his phone.

Why doesn't my hotspotting work?

ZTE Z988

Episode 1436

Joe from West Palm Beach, FL

Joe is having trouble with his ZTE Z988 phone and hotspotting. He keeps turning it on and after a minute, it drops. Leo says to call T-Mobile and let them know his hotspot feature isn't working, because it sounds like they haven't activated it. But it's also possible that it's not available with that phone and his new carrier. There can be some hardware limitations too. But if he's getting data anyway, then that's not it. It probably just needs activation.