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I have a MacBook and an iPhone around. On the ground I have no phone signal, therefore there's no way to turn the hotspot on.

I put my iPhone on a long piece of wood and bring it in the air at a height of ~6 meters. There my iPhone gets phone signal and internet.

Is it possible to turn the hotspot on using some kind of bluetooth communication from the ground level?

Is there any other way to do it?

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Yes, you can turn on the hotspot from the MacBook by choosing the phone in the WiFi menu, where it is displayed with a special icon. The feature is called "Instant Hotspot" and is accomplished using Bluetooth.

  1. sign in to iCloud on both devices
  2. Enable continuity (a.k.a. Handoff) on both - https://support.apple.com/en-us/HT204681
  3. Enable wifi and Bluetooth on both macOS and iOS

This requires you to be using the same AppleID on the phone as on the MacBook. You'll also need at least iOS 8.1 on the phone and OS X Yosemite or later on the MacBook.

If you open System Report on your Mac and select "Bluetooth", it should be listed whether Instant Hotspot is supposed by your hardare.

  • How can I make sure my phone bluetooth is seen by the MacBook? Last time when I tried no phone was visible in the wifi menu, even the bluetooth was activated. – Ionică Bizău Mar 15 '17 at 11:16
  • Test it on the ground before you place the phone in the air. If it works there, it's a range problem. – jksoegaard Mar 15 '17 at 11:17
  • I guess if the phone hotspot is not active, it won't even appear in the menu. I don't think it's a range problem. – Ionică Bizău Mar 15 '17 at 11:18
  • @IonicăBizău I'm editing the answer to have more steps. If you have range issues, it's either external Bluetooth interference or it is a hardware malfunction. Handoff in this case works for me at ranges of 10 meters or so usually. How long is your "stick"? – bmike Mar 15 '17 at 11:19
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    That worked. I think it was because I used hotspot for the first time with this prepay sim. I was saying Please contact your carrier before. Then after using hotspot in a place with a stronger signal, now it is working here as well. This very message was sent via my improvised antenna which uses my iPhone: i.imgur.com/HiRgAZV.jpg 🎉 – Ionică Bizău Mar 15 '17 at 14:06

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