Using iPhone to tether to Powerbook

Discussion in 'iPhone Tips, Help and Troubleshooting' started by iaddict, Dec 8, 2008.

  1. iaddict macrumors 6502

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    May 15, 2007
    #1
    Okay, my son has to have internet for college. He lives off campus and currently has an att usb connect card that he uses for his laptop. Is it possible, legal, etc for him to get an iPhone and tether it to his powerbook so he doesn't have to pay internet for both? I guess professors are getting crazy with sending emails at odd times of the day and expecting students to have 24/7 access to everything they send out.
     
  2. abijnk macrumors 68040

    abijnk

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    #2
    Can he do it? Yes. Is it legal? Debatable. He would have to jailbreak and use the tethering app there.
     
  3. Hutch1 macrumors 6502a

    Hutch1

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    #3
    The other issue is 24/7 with an iPhone tethered is basically impossible because it won't charge enough well tethered. Tethering is good for use in a quick pinch but the connect card will serve him better.
     
  4. kornyboy macrumors 68000

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    Knoxville, TN (USA)
    #4
    Wirelessly posted (iPhone: Mozilla/5.0 (iPhone; U; CPU iPhone OS 2_2 like Mac OS X; en-us) AppleWebKit/525.18.1 (KHTML, like Gecko) Version/3.1.1 Mobile/5G77 Safari/525.20)

    There are also rumors that AT&T and Apple are working on a deal to allow people to do this for an extra fee each month if you are in the US.
     
  5. iaddict thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #5
    24/7 connectivity

    No, what I was trying to say I did a poor job of. He needs to have access all the time. While he's on campus, it makes sense to have it through his phone but, if it were also possible to have a plan to tether it to his computer, then he wouldn't be paying twice for access to the internet, once on his phone and once through the computer. It just is getting too costly for the amount of time he actually uses his computer for the internet.
     
  6. abijnk macrumors 68040

    abijnk

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    #6
    We understand, and we are telling you it is doable, but not a good idea.

    The biggest problem, as Hutch1 pointed out, is that tethering uses too much battery life. The amount of battery expended by tethering is more than the iPhone can take in at the same time. So, while he would be able to logon whenever he wanted to he wouldn't be able to stay connected all the time.

    Also, if email is the main concern, then why doesn't he set up his school account on his iPhone so he can get emails there?
     
  7. iaddict thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #7
    no iPhone

    We were considering purchasing an iPhone if it would make it easier and less costly for him in the long run to have access to the internet that way. He was considering a Blackberry but I was wondering if the iPhone would be a better way for him to go.
     
  8. question fear macrumors 68020

    question fear

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    #8
    Right, but what people in the thread seem to be asking is, if he mainly needs internet to answer emails why not get an iPhone/blackberry/etc and just get unlimited data to answer emails 24/7?
     
  9. abijnk macrumors 68040

    abijnk

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    #9
    Oh, I missed the part where you don't currently have an iPhone. My answer is still the same though. :)
     
  10. iaddict thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #10
    Okay, so I understand....

    Either way, you are telling me that tethering isn't a good idea, I think. So, if we are going to get a new phone, which is better to go with for checking email - an iPhone or a Blackberry. Also, are both plans going to cost the same or will he pay more for one than the other?

    Thanks to all for your help. I am certainly not up on all these new tech things.
     
  11. abijnk macrumors 68040

    abijnk

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    #11
    Both plans are going to cost about the same, so it really comes down to personal preference between the phones. I would suggest he go to the AT&T store and play with the different phones to make his decision.
     
  12. iaddict thread starter macrumors 6502

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    #12
    Does one offer more for the money than the other? I know I can pick up a Blackberry curve at Sam's for 51.00 with an upgrade but didn't know if the iPhone has features that I can't get on the Blackberry? We live about 40 miles from nearest store so I'm just trying to get a little more info before heading that way.

    Thanks
     
  13. abijnk macrumors 68040

    abijnk

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    #13
    That can really be a matter of personal choice. They can pretty much do the same thing, its just different levels of service. The iPhone has a stronger app base and a much better browsing experience to the curve. Also, the iPhone is a lot easier to sync with macs than blackberries are (I hated trying to sync my blackberry). However, the blackberry has what is universally considered the best email capabilities (this is due to their push services through Blackberry Internet Service). Then there is the matter of touch screen vs. physical keys, which is a purely personal option.

    Good luck with your choice!
     
  14. 2A Batterie macrumors 6502a

    2A Batterie

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    #14
    Actually, the Curve has a much better application base. Keep in mind that BlackBerry has been around for quite some time and has a huge amount of third party apps.
    I've had the Pearl and currently have the Storm, both on Verizon, and tethering isn't a problem at all. In fact, tethering on the Storm is incredibly fast.
     
  15. ppc750fx macrumors 65816

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    Aug 20, 2008
    #15
    1) Is it doable? Yes. It's very easy.

    2) Is it legal? If you haven't signed a contract stating you won't tether, then yes. It may be against your provider's policies, but again, unless you signed something stating you won't tether (and/or won't violate the carrier's rules), then it is legal.

    3) Is it a good idea? That depends. First, see #2. I'm on a prepaid plan with O2 at the moment. Their terms and conditions prohibit tethering, but given that I at no time agreed to said terms and conditions (no, "implicit agreement" by simply using the service doesn't count), there are no legal issues for me. They might cut me off if they find out/care, but given that I don't use a lot of data, there's no problem. I've not found battery life to be an issue either, but I mainly only tether for short periods (such as needing to do some quick remote work in an airport, etc.)

    Really, I've found that carriers don't care whether or not you tether, provided you're not using it as your primary connection. If you're tethering to play games, stream music, and download movies, then yes, they'll care. If, on the other hand, tethering is just a "make do" solution for when there's no WiFi, chances are they won't care, even if it violates their terms of service.
     

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