I have a MacBook Pro (running OS X and Windows) with a broken Wi-Fi card. I plan to get the Wi-Fi card fixed soon, however I want to back a few things up on the Internet before I hand off my Mac to the Genius Bar.

The last time I had this issue, I had an Android phone and was fairly easily able to download an app (FoxFi, if I remember correctly) and share my Wi-Fi connection with my laptop via a USB cable.

From reading answers to similar questions, it seems that according to Apple a Wi-Fi connection cannot be shared. I understand why a Wi-Fi connection might not be possible if you're using the antenna to broadcast a Wi-Fi hotspot, but why would you not be able to share a Wi-Fi connection over USB? It seems like it must be technically possible for an iPhone and not something that would be restricted due to carrier concerns about cellular tethering.

I basically want to use my phone as a Wi-Fi USB dongle and don't want to buy a USB dongle because I'm planning to fix my Wi-Fi soon anyway. Also, I don't have easy access to Ethernet at the moment.

Note: I do not want to use cellular data, only Wi-Fi. I would prefer a solution that doesn't involve jail breaking my iPhone. I do not wish to enable hotspot if I have to pay for it (I am on Verizon, which does not allow free cellular tethering).


2 Answers 2


You can use your iphone as USB wifi adapter only when using cellular data or jailbreak.

Another way to solve the problem 1

  1. Plug in wifi-adapter from this list
  2. install drivers by instructions
  3. Use external wifi adapter

Another way to solve the problem 2

  1. Find a utp cable.
  2. Connect a mac and a router with the found cable

First, turn tethering on. Then, plug your phone via USB. Open system preferences on your Mac. Click network, then check the left side for your iPhone. If it's there, you're good to go. Else, click the '+' button. Set the name to whatever you want and set Interface to iPhone USB. The, restart tethering on your phone.

  • So the question is how do I "turn tethering on" for wifi? I don't want to use cellular hotspot (b/c I don't want to pay for it) and I don't want to jailbreak.
    – Gunnar
    May 20, 2014 at 18:17
  • 1
    Sorry for the misunderstanding. There is no way to do that unfortunately without jail breaking
    – Alex
    May 20, 2014 at 18:18
  • Thanks, very frustrating that this kind of thing is so easy on Android and impossible on the iPhone.
    – Gunnar
    May 20, 2014 at 18:28
  • It can be, but under normal circumstances, there really wouldn't be any want/need to do that. And I actually just researched it a bit more, and it is a hardware limitation, not software. The phone has only one WiFi card. It would need two: one for incoming WiFi and one for outgoing. You can get usb WiFi adapters for less than $5 on amazon though.
    – Alex
    May 20, 2014 at 18:33
  • 1
    Ooh ok, you would just need to jailbreak then
    – Alex
    May 20, 2014 at 18:52

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