Get Connected: Hotspots, Public Wi-Fi & Cell Phone Tethering Tips

Wednesday, April 8, 2020
Cell Tethering

Now that our classes have transitioned to a remote learning format, we know internet access is more important than ever. We've compiled a list of public Wi-Fi hotspots in our area that you can access from the safety of your car. We've also provided instructions on using your cell phone as a Wi-Fi hotspot.

Public Wi-Fi

Click here to view locations in Google Maps.

  • 2557 S Gilbert Rd
  • 200 S Arizona Ave
  • 290 S Arizona Ave
  • 1935 S Val Vista Dr
  • 1961 S Val Vista Dr
  • 3510 E Baseline Rd
  • 1914 S Power Rd
  • 6810 E Guadalupe Rd
  • 511 W Guadalupe Rd
  • 1700 E Elliot Rd
  • 1804 E Elliot Rd
  • 9010 S Priest Dr
  • 7102 W Orchid Ln

Free Wi-Fi at Businesses

These local establishments are known for Wi-Fi signals that may extend into parking lots and nearby outdoor spaces.

Public Wi-Fi Safety

  • Don’t enter sensitive information. Use ‘https’ (secure) websites as much as possible. 
  • Forget the network in your Wi-Fi settings when you are done working.
  • Enable two-factor authentication on frequently visited sites when possible.
  • Learn more:

Cell Phone Hotspots: iPhone or iPad

If you have an iPhone or an iPad with a connection to a cellular provider, you can set up a Wi-Fi hotspot anywhere and share internet access with a laptop or other mobile device. To set up/enable the Personal Wi-Fi Hot Spot built into your Apple iOS Smart Device, follow the instructions



First, tap on the Settings icon on your home screen.



Then, in the Settings menu, tap Personal Hotspot.

In most cases when the Personal Hotspot screen appears it will already have the Personal Hotspot slider set to enabled (the button will be green); this is because the Personal Hotspot enables as the screen is opened. If however, the slider is not enabled, tap it to turn it on.

Once the Personal Hotspot slider is enabled, it will be green and you may proceed to the next step.

If your Wi-Fi on your phone is not enabled, enabling the Personal Hotspot will prompt you if you wish to enable Wi-Fi; tap Turn on Wi-Fi to enable the connection so that will be able to connect your laptop or computer to this mobile Hot Spot that you have enabled on your phone.


The Wi-Fi Password will be listed below the slider.


On your laptop or desktop computer, you will be able to

connect to the Personal Hotspot using the instructions below(also appearing in the screenshot to the left). Please note, the name of your device may be something other than “Personal iPhone” depending on your particular setup:



1. Choose “Personal iPhone” from the Wi-Fi settings on your computer or other device.

2. Enter the password when prompted.


Cell Phone Hotspots: Android

To set up/enable the Mobile Hotspot built into your Google/Samsung/LG or other Android Smart Device, follow the instructions below:


First, tap on the Settings icon on your home screen.


Then, in the Settings menu, tap the Connections icon.


Once in the Connections menu, scroll near the bottom of the

menu and tap Mobile Hotspot and Tethering.

From the Mobile Hotspot and Tethering menu, tap the Mobile Hotspot slider to enable this feature.

The Mobile Hotspot slider will turn blue once enabled.

With the Mobile Hotspot enabled, the instructions to connect to the hotspot will appear in the Mobile Hotspot menu as shown on the left:


Connecting with password

1. Turn on Wi-Fi on the device (PC, laptop etc.) you want to use internet.

2. Find My Hotspot in Wi-Fi network list.

3. Connect to My Hotspot by entering hotspotpassword as

the password.

4. Enjoy the Internet using your personal Mobile Hotspot.


As an alternative, there are also instructions using a QR code to connect, if that feature is enabled, though this is optional.


Below the instructions to connect, the password for the hotspot and Wi-Fi sharing (disabled by default) will also be listed.

At the bottom of this screen, a list of devices that are connected to the hotspot will be listed, though this will likely be empty (as shown) if this is your first time enabling this feature.

This and the next step are optional and are an alternative for the first steps of this process. You may also open the Mobile Hotspot menu from the icon on the Swipe Down menu if available.

From here, you may tap the Tethering or Mobile HotSpot item to set it up.


Cellular Provider Information

In response to COVID-19, most cellular providers have increased access to internet services. Here’s

a quick overview of the major providers in Arizona (as of April 1, 2020):


  • Waive domestic postpaid wireless plan overage charges for data, voice or text for residential or small business wireless customers incurred because of economic hardship related to the coronavirus pandemic.
  • Keep our public Wi-Fi hotspots open for anyone who needs them.
  • Not terminate the service of any postpaid wireless, home phone or broadband residential or small business customer because of their inability to pay their bill due to disruptions caused by the coronavirus pandemic.
  • Waive any late payment fees that any postpaid wireless, home phone or broadband residential or small business, U-verse TV or DIRECTV customer may incur because of economic hardship related to the coronavirus pandemic.
  • See for more information.


  • Adding data for new and existing customers to capped and unlimited voice and data plans for a limited time.
  • Offering 2GB of data, with unlimited talk and text, for $15/mo.
  • Waive the reactivation fee and the Automated Phone System fee that applies to service payments.
  • Offer BridgePay, which lets you split your current bill into two payments, giving you an additional 7  days to pay. 
  • See for more information.


  • Most consumer customers on metered data (not Unlimited) plans will receive Unlimited data for 60 days (or a minimum of 2 bill cycles).
  • Sprint will provide an additional 20 GB Mobile Hotspot per month per line for customers that already have Mobile Hotspot in their plan for 60 days (or a minimum of 2 bill cycles).
  • Sprint will also provide 20 GB Mobile Hotspot per month per line to any customer that has a capable handset and does not have Mobile Hotspot today for 60 days (or a minimum of 2 bill cycles).
  • See for more information.

T-Mobile & Metro by T-Mobile

  • ALL current T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile customers as of March 13, 2020 who have legacy plans without unlimited high-speed data will get unlimited smartphone data for the next 60 days (excluding roaming).
  • Starting March 20, 2020, providing T-Mobile and Metro by T-Mobile customers on smartphone plans with hotspot data an additional 20GB of smartphone mobile hotspot (10GB per bill cycle for the next 60 days) for each voice line. (T-Mobile Connect excluded).
  • Working with our Lifeline partners to provide customers extra free data up to 5GB of data per month through May 13, 2020.
  • See and for more information.

U.S. Cellular

  • Eliminated overage charges for those of you on legacy plans, including Shared Connect and other postpaid and prepaid plans with data limits, so you can use the data you need without worrying about your bill.
  • To further enhance your experience, if you are currently on a limited 2GB or 6GB plan, your plan will not be throttled to 2G speeds at those thresholds.
  • Additionally, extra data provided beyond your plan will be delivered at speeds that are suitable for standard definition video quality.
  • If you’re on an Unlimited Everyday or Even Better plan, we’ve provided you an extra 15GB of hotspot data to adjust to any shifting and varying work arrangements.
  • See for more information.


  • Give 15GB of additional high-speed data for wireless consumer and small business customers that will be automatically applied to consumer plans from March 25 through April 30, 2020. No customer action is necessary.
  • Offer a new affordable internet option for low-income households, starting April 3. Click for the latest news release.
  • Waived late fees and overage charges for 60 days from March 16 to May 13 for customers and small businesses who let us know they are unable to pay as a result of economic hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and we will not terminate service to those customers.
  • Current customers who have Lifeline service (low income) as of March 20 will have all billing charges waived for 60 days (two billing cycles) beginning with their March 22, 2020 bills.
  • See for more information.