USB tether S8 versus S3

jwilliamcupp

    I've just upgraded my Samsung Galaxy S3 to an S8 and I have a problem with USB tethering.  First, let me explain that I know using the WiFi hotspot kills using WiFi access on the phone (because it's the same radio).  However, that is NOT what I'm asking about.

     

    On my Samsung S3 I used to use WiFi access on the phone and USB tethering all the time.  I did this because my laptop has a lousy WiFi card installed that sometimes works and sometimes doesn't.  I would be at home, on my WiFi network, pull in data on the phone from the WiFi and send that to the laptop via USB tethering.  The data was not coming in the cell phone network because I wasn't running up my data connection usage at all.

     

    (Aside, when I turned on "WiFi Hotspot" on the S3, it would alert me that WiFi would be disabled.  A different thing entirely than I'm talking about.)

     

    Now I want to use my S8 the same way as I used my S3.  But I can't.  When I plug the USB cable in and activate "USB Tethering" I get the notice that WiFi will be disabled.  The only way to feed data to the laptop from the phone is to get the data via the cell connection.  Why is that?  Is there a work-around that will permit me to get data from the WiFi network and connect to the laptop by USB, so as to use the S8 as an auxiliary WiFi connection for the laptop?

      All replies

      • thelimerunner

        Re: USB tether S8 versus S3

        As far as I can tell on the Galaxy S8/S8+ Wifi sharing is only available while using the Mobile Hotspot. I cannot find anywhere in the settings to enable it for use with the USB tethering. You could try disabling your cellular data connection, but leaving the wifi on and then use the USB tethering and see if you're able to have it share the wifi that way.

          • jwilliamcupp

            Re: USB tether S8 versus S3

            I just tried this:

            1. Activate airplane mode.  Cell signal, Bluetooth, WiFi all turned off.

            2. Turn WiFi back on (airplane mode still active; no Bluetooth nor Cell signal).

            3. Connect USB cable.

            4. Activate USB Tethering

               had to read through a help message telling me that WiFi will be disabled for either Mobile Hotspot or USB Tething.

            5. Clicked okay.

            At this point I am now "USB Tethering" but no data is flowing.  The computer shows a wired network connection (as it did when Galaxy S3 was USB Tethering through WiFi signal) but no data is available.  Galaxy S8 shows both Cell signal and WiFi is turned off, and it says it is in USB Tethering.

             

            6. Turned WiFi back on.

            The USB Tethering was disabled.

          • thelimerunner

            Re: USB tether S8 versus S3

            Dang, I was hoping that might work for you.

             

            Aside from using the phone as a wifi repeater, it looks like wifi sharing isn't an option anymore. Let me do some digging around the internet and see if there's anything else I can find that might be able to help us out.

            • tmo_chris

              Re: USB tether S8 versus S3

              I got to say, this is a really weird setup but I understand why you are doing it. Unfortunately, this may be a bit outside of T-Mobiles scope as we only really support tethering one way or the other using the T-Mobile network.

              • fredflintstonelol

                Re: USB tether S8 versus S3

                Have you tried more common steps not unique to the Galaxy phones? see How USB Tethering Can Fix Your Laptop's Bad WiFi Connection for a good how-to for what you are trying to achieve.

                  • jwilliamcupp

                    Re: USB tether S8 versus S3

                    So, what you're saying is to root the phone so I can override the pre-defined software settings?  In this case, the one that turns off WiFi whenever tethering is turned on, whether the intent is to tether from cell phone signal nor not.

                      • fredflintstonelol

                        Re: USB tether S8 versus S3

                        There was no mention of rooting anywhere within my post or the site I linked to. The TL/DR rendition was that you make sure you're connected to the wifi, setup USB tethering but do not enable wifi tethering. Then to make sure you are using wifi and not mobile data go into network settings and disable mobile data.

                    • fredflintstonelol

                      Re: USB tether S8 versus S3

                      Another option that wasn't mentioned, although it does not directly address the issue of the phone, have you considered a USB wifi card? That's what I use when I have my laptop setup in my car, the model I have has an external high gain antenna as well as a 6 foot USB cable so I can have it sitting on my dashboard. Speeds are definitely faster than using a phone for this purpose.

                      • jwilliamcupp

                        Re: USB tether S8 versus S3

                        Yes, I have such a device.  It is what I used before I began tethering my S3, and it is still an option for me.

                         

                        It just puzzles me that this possibility has been removed from the S8.  I'm quite confident it is only a software matter.  It would be (slightly) more convenient to simply use the phone rather than have to carry along another device all the time.