Get online with your Android phone

When you don’t have access to Wi-Fi, Instant Tethering uses your Android phone’s mobile data to automatically connect your Pixelbook to the internet through a simple notification shown on your Pixelbook.

Instant Tethering requirements

For your Pixelbook, you'll need:

To learn how to connect your Android phone and sign in with a different Google Account, see Related articles.

For your phone, you'll need:

Compatible Android phones
  • HTC U11, U11+
  • HTC U12+
  • Huawei Mate 10, Mate 10 Pro
  • Huawei Mate 20, Mate 20 Pro, Mate 20 X
  • LG G7 ThinQ
  • LG V30, V30+, V30S ThinQ, V30S+ ThinQ
  • LG V35 ThinQ
  • LG V40 ThinQ
  • Motorola Moto Z
  • Motorola Moto Z2 Force
  • Motorola Z3
  • Nexus 5X
  • Nexus 6, Nexus 6P
  • OnePlus 5, 5T
  • OnePlus 6, 6T
  • Pixel, Pixel XL
  • Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL
  • Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL
  • Samsung Galaxy S7, S7 Active, S7 Edge
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 8
  • Samsung Galaxy S8, S8+
  • Samsung Galaxy Note 9
  • Samsung Galaxy S9, S9+
  • Samsung Galaxy S10, S10+, S10e, S10 5G

Use Instant Tethering

  1. If you haven't already, connect your phone to your Chrome OS device. To learn how, see Related articles.
  2. When you unlock your device and there is no internet connection available, you should see a notification that a data connection is available from your Android phone (this notification will appear once per user session).
  3. Select Connect to use your phone's mobile data to get your device online.

Turn off Instant Tethering

To disconnect from Instant Tethering once you have an internet connection, tap Disconnect in the notification on your device or phone.

To disable Instant Tethering on your Chrome OS device:

  1. At the bottom right, select the time to open your status area.
  2. Select Settings Settings.
  3. Under "Connected devices," select the arrow Right arrow next to your Android device in "Connected devices."
  4. Select the toggle next to "Instant Tethering" to turn it off.

Troubleshoot issues with Instant Tethering

If you're having trouble using Instant Tethering, try these steps to see if one of them resolves the issue:

Step 1: Check to make sure your phone has Bluetooth turned on.

At the top of your phone's screen, a Bluetooth icon Bluetooth shows when Bluetooth is on. 
To turn on Bluetooth:
  1. Open your Pixel phone's "Settings" app Settings app.
  2. Tap Connected devices.
  3. Tap the toggle next to Bluetooth to turn it on.

Learn more about connecting via Bluetooth on your Pixel phone.

Step 2: Make sure Google Play Services notifications are enabled on your phone.

  1. Open your Pixel phone's "Settings" app Settings app.
  2. Tap Apps & notifications and then All apps.
  3. Find Google Play services and tap to open.
  4. Tap App notifications.
  5. Check that app notifications are "On." If not, tap the toggle to enable.

Step 3: Check that you're signed in with the same Google Account as your phone.

For Instant Tethering to work, your Pixel phone must use the same Google Account you're using on your device.

You can see the account you're using by selecting the time at the bottom right to open the status area. Your signed-in account appears at the top of the status area.

If you're signed in with a different account than the one you use on your phone, you'll need to sign out and sign back in using the same account as your phone.

To learn how to sign in with a different Google Account, see Related articles.

Step 4: Check that your phone has an active SIM card.

If not, contact your mobile service provider to get one.

Step 5: Verify that your phone has reception.

If your Pixel phone isn't getting sufficient cellular reception, try Instant Tethering once you've moved to a location with better reception.

Step 6: Restart your phone's Bluetooth and turn your device off and on again.

To restart your Pixel phone's Bluetooth:
  1. Open your Pixel phone's "Settings" app Settings app.
  2. Tap Connected devices.
  3. Tap the toggle next to Bluetooth to turn it off. Tap it again to turn it back on.

To turn your device's power off and on:

  1. At the bottom right, select the time to open the status area.
  2. Select "Power" Power icon to turn off your device. (Note that you need to power the device off. Simply restarting won't help resolve this issue.)
  3. Press the power button on the side of your device to turn it back on.

If you're still having issues with Instant Tethering after trying the above steps, contact support by selecting Contact us in the top right corner of the page.

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