Before Chrome OS 71, Instant Tethering allowed any Google-made Android phone to provide a nearby Google-made Chromebook with 3G or LTE internet access immediately once Wi-Fi signal was lost or the laptop was opened without an internet connection.
Essentially, this eliminates the process of setting up a hotspot SSID on your phone, finding the Wi-Fi network the phone produces from your laptop and entering the credentials you set up.
Now, the feature is available on 15 more Chromebooks and 31 more Android phones from just about every major manufacturer of Google devices once Chrome OS 71 is installed. (See below every product that now supports Instant Tethering, thanks to 9to5Google.)
This move is a long time coming since Google introduced it exclusively to its own devices in 2017, and news of the expansion leaked just last week. Google celebrated the expansion of the feature as part of its “Better Together” initiative aimed at improving the experience of owning both a Chromebook and an Android phone.
With Windows 10 developers now constantly producing new tools with which users can connect and interact with a tethered Android phone, it makes sense for Google to finally expand the feature. Otherwise, Microsoft might catch up to Chromebooks in the budget space, and Google can’t have that.
Here are all of the Chrome OS and Android devices that now support Instant Tethering:
Chromebooks now with Instant Tethering
Android phones now with Instant Tethering
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