How to Use an iPad 3G to Connect a Laptop to the Internet

Updated April 17, 2017

The iPad 2 comes with the most recent version of iOS, which includes a feature called "Personal Hotspot." Available for 3G devices, this utility allows you to turn your iPad into a hot spot for your Wi-Fi-enabled devices. In order to use this service, you will need a 3G data plan and be able to connect to the 3G network in your current location.

Go to "Settings," "General" and "Network" to view your iPad's network settings.

Tap the "Personal Hotspot" option, which should be the third option, below "Data Roaming."

Slide the button to "On," and select a password for your personal hot spot connection. Plug your iPad into your computer to share the connection via USB (and also alleviate draining your iPad battery), or connect via Wi-Fi or Bluetooth. You will be prompted as to whether you want to turn on Bluetooth.

Select the personal hot spot on your laptop's network settings, if you're not sharing the connection via USB. Enter the password for the network to access the connection.

Turn off the Personal Hotspot on the settings page when you're done using the connection.


You will not be able to access the Internet on your iPad while other computers are using the Personal Hotspot feature.


Keep in mind any data limits on your 3G plan; if you surpass the bandwidth of your data plan you may be charged overages per MB or GB, depending on your provider.

Things You'll Need

  • 3G data plan
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About the Author

Ashley Poland has been writing since 2009. She has worked with local online businesses, supplying print and web content, and pursues an active interest in the computer, technology and gaming industries. In addition to content writing, Poland is also a fiction writer. She studied creative writing at Kansas State University.