windows phone 8

4G Mode Tethering Not Working on O2 Windows Phone 8

After a recent software update on my Lumina 820, I noticed that under the Mobile Network settings menu there is a new mode for Connection Speed of mobile data. Previously, the choices were 2G or 3G but there is now a third item for 4G.

Whilst sitting in Heathrow airport bored because I arrived insanely early for my flight, I thought I’d at least get a bit of work done so started up Internet Sharing on the phone, but the Surface Pro would only see the connection status as Limited and never Connected.

This isn’t uncommon for tethering to fail to work off the bat so I restarted everything but still nothing. I tried a few other bits and still nothing so I decided to drop the speed on the phone to 2G just to see if it was a high speed data issue and immediately, the connection status on the Surface moved to Connected.

Not being happy with GPRS or EDGE speeds (and who would be these days), I moved it up to 3G on the phone and it still worked yet as soon as I moved it up to 4G, it stopped and the Surface reverted back to Limited. In that nothing has changed on my O2 account package or contractually wise, I must assume this is related to O2 blocking high speed  HSPA+ for tethering. What would be interesting is if I was in an area without HSPA+ coverage but with only HSDPA would it work in 4G mode? A call to O2 is in order I believe.

Whilst on the subject, I really dislike the industry coined term tethering to refer to internet sharing on mobile devices. Tethering means to be tethered or tied to something which implies a cable. As it’s all being done over an ad-hoc WiFi network, shouldn’t we come up with a better name than tethering?