How do smartphone data plans work

Fix: FoxFi not working -

FoxFi, now part of PdaNet +, is an app that enables Wi-Fi hotspot on your Android phone without the need for a tether plan or root privileges. With several connection options such as USB, Wi-Fi and Bluetooth, PdaNet + is one of the leading Android apps for connecting mobile data traffic.

Users with large or unlimited data plans can use FoxFi to create Wi-Fi hotspots and allow their friends and family to connect using their computers, tablets, or game consoles with WPA2 security.

Unfortunately, due to pressure from cellular carriers and multiple updates (especially the Nougat update), Wi-Fi mode is now severely limited to a few devices.

Verizon no longer allows FoxFi WiFi connections on devices running Android Nougat. In addition, only Samsung phones with a Verizon data plan running Android 6.1 or lower still support Wi-Fi connection. For a full list of supported FoxFi devices, see this list.

FoxFi creates a security certificate that will be used later to make changes to your Android system. After that, a VPN (Virtual Private Network) will be used to bypass the subscription check for your hotspot so you can activate it. But Android 7.0 (Nougat) made things a lot harder. However, Nougat has removed user control over security certificates. Additionally, in some cases, the update blocks FoxFi's WiFi cable and Bluetooth cable. Even if you signal your device that you trust FoxFi, the app will still not become a system-trusted app.

The good news; FoxFi's USB tethering is largely unaffected by the changes associated with Nougat. The only minor problem is that T-Mobile data plans will only work with “Hide Tether Usage” enabled, which will stop any type of Netflix streaming.

With that in mind, here's what you can do to keep using FoxFi to tether your cellular data connection.

Method 1: use USB tethering

If you've mainly used FoxFi for your laptop, this guide is all you need. The good news is that you can easily share your telephone network with your PC / laptop. Although the steps may vary slightly from device to device, you should be able to use the following steps as a general guide.

  1. Download and install PdaNet + from the Google Play Store.
  2. Go to the settings and scroll all the way down to About the device (Via phone on some devices).
  3. Look for the mentioned option Build number and tap it seven times. If you get it right, you should see a message that says "You are a developer now”.
  4. Now go back to the first one the settings Menu and scroll all the way down. You should be able to see a new option called Developer option.
  5. Tap on Developer optionsScroll to the debugging area and enable it USB debugging. However, make sure to do this while your Android is not connected to the PC or laptop or it will not work.
  6. Switch to your PC / laptop, visit this website and download the latest version of PdaNet + to your computer. Make sure you are downloading the correct version (Windows or Mac).
  7. Follow the initial setup and install PdaNet + on your computer.
  8. Now it's time to connect your phone to the PC / laptop. Unless you have already changed this, when you connect your phone, the USB mode will be set to Charge By default. For this to work you need to set it to MTP or PTP.

Note: Some LG models only work with the PTP option.

  1. Once connected, you should be able to access the internet using the newly created tethered connection. You can close this connection by right-clicking the PdaNet + icon on your computer and clicking Separate.

Note: We recommend expanding the PdaNet + the settings on your computer and set it to “Auto Connect When Attached”. This will ensure that once connected, your computer will connect to the internet on your phone.

Method 2: downgrade to marshmallow

If using USB tethering doesn't suit your purpose, downgrading to Marshmallow is your only option to keep using FoxFi. The problem is that the process can vary greatly for each manufacturer. Since almost every device manufacturer has proprietary software for flashing, we cannot provide a guide for all of them.

However, if you do decide to do so, take some precautions as you run the risk of damaging your device. If you have successfully downgraded, remember to freeze or disable the app that processes software updates so that you are not upgraded to Nougat again.