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Smart phone tethering allows business owners to connect their laptops to the Internet via a smart phone, expanding the reach and computing power of both devices.
Smart phone tethering offers users a number of advantages. Smart phones offer high-speed connections from virtually anywhere, but have smaller screens and keyboards than full-featured laptops. Laptops are fast and powerful, but sometimes you may need to work in an area or venue without a reliable broadband or Wi-Fi connection.
Smart phone tethering helps users bridge these gaps. The most common approaches allow a smart phone to act as a broadband wireless modem by connecting with the laptop, either through a USB cable or via a Bluetooth connection (if the laptop has built-in Bluetooth capabilities).
For casual users, adding a tethering option to their smart phone's data plan may offer an affordable option to a dedicated "aircard" mobile broadband plan. If most of your computing takes place in a location with a reliable Internet connection or Wi-Fi access, tethering can serve as a valuable backup for times when you need to get online from the road.
Tethering can also help users save money over the often-expensive broadband access plans available in many hotels. Purchasing Internet access for as little as two days in some hotels can cost more than a month's worth of access through a tethered smart phone connection.
In addition, because your wireless data is transmitted over your carrier's wireless broadband network, a tethered connection is more secure than it would be at a public Wi-Fi hotspot. Data is sent quickly and securely, without being exposed to the casual snooping or other security risks possible at unsecured public hotspots.
Smart phone tethering has been possible for several years now, but used to require considerable technical expertise to connect the devices and configure the necessary settings. In addition, using a smart phone as a modem often precluded people from receiving phone calls or text messages, which wasn't an acceptable trade-off for many business travelers.
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