How to fix iPhone Hotspot not showing up on Android in iOS 17

By Dave Johnson - Senior Staff Writer
2 Min Read

A friend of mine is an Android user. He was visiting me and did not have an Internet connection and wanted to use my iPhone’s hotspot, also called tethering, to connect to the Internet. However, the Android phone was not seeing the iPhone’s hotspot and, thus, was not connecting to it. I was trying to share hotspot from my iPhone 15 Pro running iOS 17. In this article, I explain what we did to fix this problem. If you are having a similar issue, this may fix the problem for you as well.

Using Personal Hotspot on iPhone

If you own an iPhone, like the iPhone 14 Pro Max or the iPhone 15 Pro Max, you also have a hotspot, which allows you to connect your Mac, iPad, PC, smart TV, Android phone and other devices to the internet. This is useful when you don’t have access to Wi-Fi, but still need internet.

iPhone hotspot works just like the Wi-Fi in your home. All you have to do is turn the hotspot on and connect to it with your other device using the hotspot password. Your iPhone — acting as the hotspot — then shares its 4G or 5G cellular network with other devices, giving it an internet connection and allowing you to browse the web. This is a really easy process; first, turn on Personal Hotspot on iPhone by going to Settings > Cellular > Personal Hotspot or Settings > Personal Hotspot and then the other user should be able to connect to it just like a Wi-Fi connection.

iPhone hotspot not appearing in Android device’s list of Wi-Fi options

If iPhone Hotspot is not showing on Android phone, here’s how to fix the problem.

Turn on Maximize Compatibility on iPhone

When we experienced this problem, we tried some basic troubleshooting steps to fix it: restarting the iPhone, restarting the Android phone, turning on and off Airplane Mode, changing the iPhone’s name and more. None of them worked.

We ended up fixing the issue by turning on Maximize Compatibility in iPhone settings, and then the Android phone connected quickly. Here’s how to enable Maximize Compatibility on iPhone:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap Personal Hotspot.
  3. Move the Maximize Compatibility slider to on/green.

Please note that this option is only available on iPhone 12 models or newer, iPad Pro 11-inch (3rd generation or newer), iPad Pro 12.9-inch (5th generation or newer), and iPad mini (6th generation).

What is Maximize Compatibility on iPhone?

By default, iPhone 12 models and newer support Personal Hotspot over 5GHz Wi-Fi. Since some older devices can only use a 2.4GHz connection and this could lead to compatibility issues, Apple introduced "Maximize Compatibility" option that lets you switch to 2.4Ghz when needed.

It’s important to note that turning on Maximize Compatibility might reduce internet performance and Wi-Fi security for devices connected to the hotspot.

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By Dave Johnson Senior Staff Writer
Dave Johnson is a staff writer for GeeksChalk based in New Jersey. He covers news, how-tos, and user guides for iPhone, iPad, Mac, and Apple Watch.
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