Turn Your Phone Into a Free WiFi Tethering Hotspot With FoxFi (No Root)

FoxFi WiFi Tether (No Root)

UPDATE: If you have already been using FoxFi/PDANet+, and it stopped working after you upgraded your phone, please click here.

Ready…Set…Take #2 (This is my 2nd time around writing this post, because I fell asleep in the middle of writing it the first time and for some reason it never autosaved) Can you say FRUSTRATING!?!  Anyway, I’m hoping I can do my original justice, so here goes nothing.

For a small endangered species of smartphone users (those with unlimited data), coming across a free wi-fi tethering app that actually works is like finding the Holy Grail of smartphone apps.  To top it off, it’s even more exciting when you don’t have to root your phone to use it.  If you have no idea what the word “root” refers to, you can either A. click the little grey link above to find out or B.  Ignore it, and keep reading on, because it’s probably something you would not be interested in doing anyway.  I’m gonna go out on a limb here and say you’re going with option B.

Personally, I have searched high and low for a reliable tethering app, and the one that I keep coming back to is FoxFi.  No, I am not being paid to promote this application in any way by its developers in case you are wondering.  I like it so much, I paid for the premium version.  Here are some advantages of FoxFi, as taken from the developer’s site:

  • No rooting required, avoid hassle and risk of bricking
  • No need to install anything on the computer
  • Supports connection from any tablets including iPad, Kindle, Nook etc.
  • Supports connection from PS3, XBox, WII etc.
  • Supports multiple connections at the same time
  • Secured with WPA2. Avoids the security risk of enabling USB debugging.

FoxFi usage is covered under the same phone data plan you have and no tethering plan is actually needed.  So you can see why the unlimited data feature coupled with this app make for a grand old-time.  Currently WiFi mode may not support some phone models, and the developers are working to expand the supported list. However Bluetooth/USB mode will work for all phones. To check and see if WiFi mode can be supported on your phone visit http://foxfi.com/devices.

The app is completely free, but currently it has a usage limit that requires you to restart FoxFi to continue using free mode. I found this annoying and well worth the $7.95 that the full version costs, which has no usage limits.  You can also rename your network to something really uncool like “iheartJustinBieber4Ever” (I just threw up a tad in my mouth typing that) and then go on to create a security password to keep your pesky neighbors from hijacking your data connection.  Everyone has neighbors that get their electric, water, and cable turned off on a regular basis right?  No? Then again, maybe that’s just me.

Please note that some model phones running Jelly Bean have locked-down the WiFi hotspot feature, and because of this FoxFi will ask you to install a user certificate on those phones. The side effect is that the Android system will require you to set a screen lock first (and only allows Pattern, PIN or Password) when you install any user certificates. If you are 100% opposed to having to have a sreen lock on your phone, then use the app in USB mode.  To undo the screen lock you have to remove the FoxFi certificate first (simply click “clear credentials” in security settings).  Also, on HTC phones, you may require to use the app via bluetooth.

In case you are wondering, yes this app currently works for the Samsung Galaxy S3 and Samsung Galaxy Note 2.  I’m actually using it right now to write this blog post, because maybe just maybe, I’m speaking from personal experience when I talk about those “neighbors” who periodically get their utilities turned off.  Don’t judge me.


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102 thoughts on “Turn Your Phone Into a Free WiFi Tethering Hotspot With FoxFi (No Root)

  1. pilar

    Queе tal,
    Es interesante este blog. Hay otros articulos no mme convenϲieron demasiado, en cսalquier caso, la gran mayoгa son bastante interesantes.

  2. sherrie

    I live in a boat an we get free open WiFi well the management has blocked my PC some how van u help me get it back somehow???

  3. Kirk

    Being charged $390 for at&t data on shared plan with wife 30GB. I’m a truck driver and use about 25GB a month. My question to you is will I be able to get a cheaper plan if I use foxfi? All carriers unlimited plan (except sprint) is 5GB of data. Not truely unlimited! I tried sprint but the coverage sucks!

    1. Casey Post author

      Hi Kirk,

      The whole idea of FoxFi being awesome is for the people that actually have unlimited data, because instead of using their carriers/device’s mobile hotspot feature, they can tether right from their phone by bypassing it and it will pull from the data plan, but this doesn’t matter if it’s unlimited. If your current plan is not unlimited with AT&T, then you will not be able to go down in data, because you will be using the same amount of data, whether it’s through the mobile hotspot or through the tethering app.


    2. Casey Post author

      Hey Kirk,

      I responded below. I am under the impression you do NOT have unlimited data? You have a 30GB plan? I hope I understood your question and answered it properly. If not, please let me know


  4. pioloy

    guys I have a galaxy s4 mini and I tried to make it a hotspot for my kindle fire HD , the connection is strong but the internet webpages say could load pages .what should I do ???

    1. Casey Post author

      Hi Pioloy,

      Are you using a tethering app or your devices hotspot? If the connection is strong, and the mobile hotspot is in fact running, than the problem is with the kindle. It may not be connected correctly. Have you connected via the security key?


    1. Casey Post author

      Hi Chris,

      I had an HTC thunderbolt back in the day, and while Wi-Fi did not work with Fox Fi, I was able to use it via Bluetooth connection, and it worked perfectly. I did not have Virgin Mobile though. If you are going to try it, try the free version first (foxfi or pdanet+). You can also try Easy Tether. I have heard good things about that, but to be honest can not vouch because I have not tried it personally.


  5. Adam

    I use foxifi on a note 2 and also used it on DROID bionic from Verizon, worked faster than my at&t wifi, I use it for Netflix and gaming on ps3 and X box and my kids my hot spot with there phone I would pay $20 if I had to

    1. Casey Post author

      Hey Adam,

      It is well worth it for sure. I have used it numerous times, and have never had a problem at all. Speed is awesome, and with my carrier’s connection I always have service, so I always have my hotspot if needed in a jam – For example, say when having to take a conference call from an Atlantic City hotel = ) That has never happened btw. lol


  6. justin cobb

    Any heads up on when they will have support on the Lg optimus f6? Please let me know asap and any other paid apps that will work. I am with metro pcs and unlimited data and wanting to use it for my xbox360

    1. Luisetow

      Is exactly the set up I have and it works perfect, you can even download foxfi for free from thepiratebay.se

  7. James

    I have a verizon samsung Galaxy S III 4.1.2 version and I just want to know if I used foxfi, if turned on the hotspot, I will be using data right?? But it will be used by a different phone # that takes the data, do I still have to pay the data, I don’t know. I’m being paranoid about it because I only have 3 GB which I’ve already used it up and is currently still using it. I did some testing but adding more data usage doesn’t make me feel reassured. I want to use it for my ps vita to link with a future ps4 so that I can use it at work or somewhere because my work doesn’t provide internet and I will have alot of free time to use it.

    1. Casey Post author

      Hi James,

      Yes you will be pulling from your data package that you currently have. It comes in handy for those that would like to avoid the cost of a fee for enabling your phone’s mobile hot spot through your carrier, although with a lot of the new share plans there is no fee now. Where it happens to be worth its weight in gold is for those people that have grandfathered unlimited data plans, because:

      1 – They can pull from their pool of data, which happens to be unlimited and
      2 – They will not have to pay any fee to have their mobile hotspot enabled through their carrier.

      Here is an example:
      Let’s just pretend that I happen to have unlimited data, and with the plan that I am on if I wanted to have a mobile hotspot enabled on my device and keep my current plan which involves unlimited data, I’d have to add on the mobile hotspot feature, which would cost $20 and give me 2GB for MOBILE HOTSPOT USE ONLY. The rest of the data that MY PHONE uses would still pull from the unlimited. Another option I would have would be to switch to one of those Share Everything plans, which would give me a particular allotment of data for ALL the lines on my account. This would involve me losing my unlimited (they will have to pry it from my cold dead hands lol), but the $20 fee to enable the hotspot would not apply (yippee!<–sarcasm). All plan data and mobile hotspot data would pull from this single allotment for all lines on the share plan. In this case, a tethering app is the answer.

      So, if you are using a ton of data, downloading a tethering app, whilst being on a LIMITED data plan, will not solve the issue you are trying to solve. You are still using the same amount of data whether it is being used by your phone or by some other device.

      Also, to answer your question, yes, when you are using your phones mobile hotspot and connect other devices to it, the other devices are using your phone's data connection. As a side note, a PS4 is gonna use a TON of data, because you are streaming constantly with online play. Not a good idea unless you have unlimited data. In addition to this, unless your carrier has an asweome connection (I shall remain neutral) you'd have a lot of lag as well.

      Hope that helps!


  8. Pingback: Comment on Turn Your Phone Into a Free WiFi Tethering Hotspot With FoxFi (No Root) by James

  9. Sarah

    Super thanks for creating this page & giving the knowledge. All of my questions have been answered about FoxFi! Especially the last question about the app using your package data.
    I do have a limited amount of data, 5GB & I am going though it like crazy. Do you know of any apps/downloads/programs.. that I can use to still access the web when my data does max out? I have two days left in the cycle lol & not sure I will live that long with 0 internet access :)

    1. Casey Post author

      Hi Sarah,

      You’re welcome, and thanks for taking the time to comment. I don’t know of any programs that would provide additional data separate of your plan data. To be honest, I do not think that they exist, although if someone could prove me wrong I would love it! There is an app called Onavo Extend Data Savings, and while it isn’t exactly what you are looking for it may be a way to get more out of your data plan without you having to change the way you use your phone. I do not have experience with it, but if this one doesn’t work for you, you may want to google “apps that help to conserve your data”. Another way that you could benefit is by connecting to Wi-Fi when you are able to, for example when you are home. This is very helpful if you are streaming anything, as streaming uses a ton of data. Toodles = )



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