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get around tethering chargesMany Android users have noticed that their service providers are trying to squeeze more money out of them. Most notably, many service providers have decided that tethering is no longer free and included in your contract. They prefer to charge an extra fee for the privilege of tethering, even though tethering is an expected right of an Android user and was previously available and included in the download limits of the phone contracts.

While the backlash against these fees is yet to make them go away, users can at least use workarounds in the meantime. There are some great tethering applications available for Android which will get around the problem for now. EasyTether is quite notable because it’s available for all operating systems, easy to use and doesn’t require root access.

Get EasyTether

Download and install EasyTether Lite in order to see if it works for you. Later you can upgrade to the paid version of EasyTether if you want the extra features, like HTTPS, instant messenger and XBox tethering. Personally, I find the paid version of EasyTether (€ 7) costs exactly the same price as one day of tethering access through my provider. That’s value for money.

Disable Regular Tethering Methods

Firstly, turn off any other automatic tethering options your phone has set up, such as Mobile Broadband Connect (Verizon) and Internet Sharing (Sprint). In order for this to work, we need to disable your normal tethering method.

Download Computer Software

EasyTether works on Windows (Windows 7/XP/Vista), Mac (10.4+ including 10.7) and Linux (Ubuntu 10.4+/Fedora 13+). Simply go to the EasyTether drivers site to find the right software for your computer. EasyTether recommends that your phone not be plugged in to your computer while you install the drivers.

Set Up EasyTether On Phone

Plug your phone in and open the EasyTether application. Choose your operating system and tell the application that you’ve already installed the software.


get around tethering charges

This next step will depend on your operating system, but essentially it involves setting up a new network for EasyTether on your computer. The phone application will guide you through the steps for your operating system.

With Mac OS X it will automatically detect the new network interface and you can set things up by following the prompts. If it isn’t automatically detected, try rebooting the system or setting it up manually as follows.

avoid tethering fee

Find the network called EasyTether and ensure it uses DHCP to configure IPv4.

On your phone, you should enable EasyTether to allow USB tethering.

get around tethering charges

Test It Out!

Sadly, EasyTether only works when connecting the phone to the computer via USB cable, which is a pain if your cable comes loose while you’re using the connection. But it works! For me this worked straight away, and worked whether the phone was using a Wi-Fi connection or 3G. At no stage did I get prompted by my service provider to pay extra for tethering, so this means success!

More Great Android Hacks & Apps

To get your Android into perfect shape, take a look at these articles:

What’s your opinion on additional tethering fees? Should tethering be automatically included in smartphone contracts? Which tethering application do you use? Let us know in the comments!

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