News

Google is Rolling Out Instant Tethering for Chrome OS to Non-Pixel Phones

By Nitish Singh / January 26, 2019

Instant Tethering for Chrome OS was one of the most important updates that bolstered the platform’s offline usability. However, the feature was limited to Google’s Pixel phones only. Pixel phone owners could instantly connect to a Chrome OS device and tether cellular internet when outside of Wi-Fi range. The feature was originally part of the Pixelbook only and was later pushed to other Chrome OS devices.

Two years since its first announcement, instant tethering is finally rolling out to non-Pixel Android phones. Internet user Wouter who tipped the update was the first to reveal details about the update. His OnePlus 6 was able to connect to his Chromebook on the v71.0.3578.94 Beta. Instant Tethering was automatically activated, and whenever he was moving out of Wi-Fi zones, he was getting internet access on his Chromebook via his phone’s network. Others with Chrome OS devices also reported the same with some users being required to enable instant tethering manually.

Chrome OS Instant Tethering

Image Courtesy of Android Police

If you own a Chrome OS device you can turn on the chrome://flags/#instant-tethering flag and see if it works as it has proven to be successful for some users. If you are successful, you will be able to see your phone under the Connected Devices setting on your Chrome OS device. Simply disconnect your Wi-Fi, and your device should prompt you to connect to your phone if you want to share your cellular data.

According to Google’s support pages, the feature requires Chrome OS 70 or later as well as a device running Android 7.1 and above. You also need to be logged in to the same Google account on both devices and have access to a cellular plan that supports tethering. While users were always able to use their phones or other cellular devices as mobile hotspots, instant tethering makes the process much quicker as your phone gets its hotspot enabled just for your Chromebook automatically once you are outside a Wi-Fi zone.

What do you think about the Instant Tethering feature on Chrome OS? Let us know in the comments below. Don’t forget to share this on socials through our own Facebook and Twitter.



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