Google today rolled out Instant Tethering to third-party Chromebooks. Fifteen additional Chromebook models and over 30 cell phone models now support the feature. The move is part of Google’s strategy of bringing Chrome OS and Android closer together.
Tethering requires switching on your hotspot that uses your phone’s mobile data, connecting to it from your other device by entering the password, and disconnecting when you’re done. Instant Tethering skips those steps by putting you through an initial set-up process and then just showing a notification with a Connect button when your Chromebook detects that it has no Wi-Fi access. As long as tethering is enabled on your mobile data plan, and you have the data to spare, your Chromebook can always be online. Instant Tethering will also automatically disconnect if it detects 10 minutes of no activity.
Prior to today, Instant Tethering was only available on Google’s own Chromebooks: the Pixelbook and the Pixel Slate. It also required a recent Nexus or Pixel phone to tether from: a Nexus 6, Nexus 5X, Nexus 6P, Pixel, Pixel XL, Pixel 2, Pixel 2 XL, Pixel 3, or Pixel 3 XL.
Here are the 15 additional Chromebooks that have gained support: Acer Chromebook 13, Acer Chromebook 14, Acer Chromebook 15, Acer Chromebook R11, Acer Chromebook Spin 13, Asus Chromebook C423, Asus Chromebook Flip C302, Dell Inspiron Chromebook 14, HP Chromebook 11 G5, HP Chromebook x2, HP Chromebook x360 14, Lenovo Yoga Chromebook C630, Samsung Chromebook 3, Samsung Chromebook Plus V2, and Samsung Chromebook Plus V2 LTE.
And here are the 31 additional phones they can be paired with: HTC U11, HTC U11+, HTC U12+, Huawei Mate 10, Huawei Mate 10 Pro, Huawei Mate 20, Huawei Mate 20 Pro, Huawei Mate 20 X, LG G7 ThinQ, LG V30, LG V30+, LG V30S ThinQ, LG V30S+ ThinQ, LG V35 ThinQ, LG V40 ThinQ, Motorola Moto Z, Motorola Moto Z2 Force, Motorola Z3, OnePlus 5, OnePlus 5T, OnePlus 6, OnePlus 6T, Samsung Galaxy S7, Samsung Galaxy S7 Active, Samsung Galaxy S7 Edge, Samsung Galaxy Note 8, Samsung Galaxy S8, Samsung Galaxy S8+, Samsung Galaxy Note 9, Samsung Galaxy S9, and Samsung Galaxy S9+.
Google says it is planning to bring Instant Tethering “to even more Chromebook and phones in the coming months.”