I can successfully tether my Mac (10.7.3) to my iPhone4 (5.0.1) via wifi, no problem, been doing it for months.

However, when I try to tether via bluetooth instead, I can't seem to see the internet from my mac. Network Settings reports a green light for Bluetooth PAN, but my browser can't connect to anything at all.

My Mac reports very similar IP addresses for both, starting with 172.20.10 and differing only in the last octet.

Any idea why I can't successfully tether via bluetooth?

  • 1
    Have you tried disabling the other network connections (on the mac) one by one in the network preference pane? It could be as simple at the default route not being set properly or needing to set the bluetooth PAN connection to be a higher preference than whatever other network connections are available.
    – bmike
    Commented Feb 20, 2012 at 17:31
  • is the tether activated via cydia tweak ?
    – Eli Y
    Commented Feb 20, 2012 at 17:32
  • no jailbreaking involved, using real pay-out-the-nose at&t tethering. No other network connections are green in the network control panel, wifi is turned off and I'm not plugged in to anything.
    – emmby
    Commented Feb 20, 2012 at 21:25

4 Answers 4


This fixes what i presume to be a corrupt internet sharing preference file. It will also remove all other network settings such as wifi access-points and their passwords so keep that in mind. Other data such as pictures and contacts will be completely safe.

  1. On your iPhone, go to Settings -> General -> Reset and choose Reset Network Settings.
  2. The iPhone will ask you to confirm and then restart.
  3. In Settings -> Internet Sharing reenable it and choose to turn on bluetooth if a dialog asking to do so appears.
  4. Reconnect to your wifi-network if applicable.
  5. You're probably done, try connecting. If it doesn't work go on.
  6. In Settings -> General -> Bluetooth tap the blue arrow beside your computer and choose to forget the device.
  7. On your computer go to System Preferences -> Bluetooth and remove your iPhone from the list.
  8. Go to System Preferences -> Network. In the Location drop down choose Edit Locations.... Add a new location and press done.
  9. Make sure the new location is selected and press Apply.
  10. Go back to System Preferences -> Bluetooth and re-pair your phone to the computer.
  11. Connect to your iPhone's bluetooth network.
  12. Back in System Preferences -> Network if you do not have a Bluetooth PAN interface add it by pressing the + button in the lower left.
  13. Press Apply and cross your fingers.

Doing the first five solved it for me, after one year of broken bluetooth-tethering.

  • Fantastic! Lifesaver. The first five steps didn't work for me, but all 13 did.
    – emmby
    Commented May 23, 2012 at 0:35

After the iPhone 5 wouldn't connect after pairing, and before I did all this, I powered the i Phone5 down and powered it up again. Magically it worked with nothing further required.


A self-assigned IP may be another problem when using Bluetooth PAN with internet sharing. One way to get around that is to manually assign an IP to the PAN with the same subnet and router as the primary wi-fi network.


In addition to the 13 steps above, having the personal hotspot on on my iPhone 4s, worked for me.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .