The Personal Hotspot feature in Apple’s iOS devices was introduced in iOS 4.3 back in 2011. This feature allows you to take advantage of your iPhone or iPad’s internet connection to get online. It’s a great alternative for when your Wi-Fi connection is not working or you simply can’t find a dependable Internet connection anywhere else.
However, we are aware that there are problems in trying to locate this feature, and sometimes it goes M.I.A. for no reason. In fact many users encounter this problem after updating their iOS to a newer version.
In this post, we will try to cover all possible reasons why your Personal Hotspot feature goes missing, and how you can recover it and put it to good use.
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#1. Reset Network Settings
Sometimes, when updating your iOS firmware, the iPhone network settings may go haywire causing the Personal Hotspot feature to go missing.
One method of getting your personal hotspot option back is to Reset Network Settings. This will reset every network setting including Wi-Fi passwords you have saved into your iPhone. Here’s how to do it.
Under Settings, tap on General. Scroll to the bottom and you’ll see the Reset button. Tap on it.
Tap on Reset Network Settings after that; when prompted, tap on the red Reset Network Settings button.
Turn off your iPhone then turn it back on and you should get your Personal Hotspot setting back
If you’ve tried this method before and found that it is not working, read on.
#2. Uninstall Data-Managing Apps
In the past, if you’ve installed an app which added a network profile to your phone, you could try uninstalling that app.
Apps like Onavo is said to be great for managing data, however it also installs a network profile to your iPhone which is said to cause issues that remove the Personal Hotspot settings from the iPhone.
To remove a network profile from your phone, go to Settings > General > Profile to uninstall the profile.
After uninstalling the network profile created by a data-managing app, you should uninstall the data managing app too by tapping and holding the app icon until the X button appears on the left top corner of the app icon. Tap on that X to uninstall it.
If this doesn’t work, try Method 3.
#3. Delete Pre-installed Profiles on iPhone
If you have previously installed a data disabling profile like iPhoneNoData.com to block GPRS, EDGE or 3G Internet connection in an earlier iPhone to avoid extra charges for data network access, try to delete that particular installed profile.
It might be able to bring Personal Hotspot option back. To remove iPhone Configuration Profiles, go to Settings > General > Profiles. Tap the profile name like "Disable Edge 3G" and tap "Remove" to discard the particular profile.
Restart your iPhone and check if Personal Hotspot is back.
Still can’t find Personal Hotspot? Try the next method.
#4. Delete iPhone Configuration Profiles on Mac
If you’re not able to see a pre-installed data service blocking profile at Settings > General > Profile, perhaps deleting your iPhone configuration profiles on a Mac can solve your problem.
To delete iPhone confirguration profiles on Mac, you need to install iPhone Configuration Utility 3.5, a free utility to maintain configuration profiles. Upon installation, launch iPhone Configration Utility.
Click on "Configuration Profiles" on the left sidebar.
Select installed profiles like "Disable Data Services", "Disable Edge 3G" or a similar profile name, press Delete to remove it from your iPhone configuration profiles.
Restart your iPhone and you should be able to see the Personal Hotspot option in your iPhone now.
#5. Reset iPhone To Factory Settings
If all the above does not get you back your Personal Hostpot settings, then you probably need to restore your iPhone to Factory Settings. But doing this will erase all your data from your iPhone, restoring it to the its original untarnished status (right out of the box).
So before doing this, we’ll advise you to visit your local carrier provider and ask them to take a look at it for you (some people reported that this fixed their Personal Hotspot issue, so it’s worth a shot).
When all else fails
To Reset or Restore your iPhone to Factory Settings, first go to Settings and then General. At the bottom, tap on Reset.
Then tap on Erase All Content and Settings, and when prompted, tap Erase iPhone.
Your iPhone should then go through the resetting process and you’ll see the Apple logo with a loading bar.
Remember, this method removes all your personal info, settings, apps and data including Photos and Music; this step should definitely bring back your Personal Hotspot settings but at the cost of your data.