How to Circumvent Orange’s Disabling of Android Wi-Fi Hotspot

One of the really useful features of Android is the ability to share the phone’s 3G connection as a Wi-Fi hotspot. So, if you’re travelling or whatever then you can get online using the data package you’re already paying for.

Certain devices like the Nexus One can be turned into a portable Wi-Fi hotspot that can be shared with up to 8 devices.
Android 2.2 Platform Highlights

This is a built-in feature. Orange disable it. Then try and charge you more money for switching it back on.

UPDATE 21/04/13: Since I’ve written this, Orange and T-Mobile combined to form EE. Tethering is supported from EE so you can just call their support line and get them to enable it. YMMV but it worked for me.

Now, we could go into a long tirade about how unscrupulous it is for a company to disable a feature of a device then try to sell it as a feature (what, it’s an extra £2 a month if I want the ‘9’ button for calls?) or we could just hack it to work.

Hack Away

DISCLAIMER: You might get charged for this on your account. Don’t blame me if you rack up a huge bill trying this, it borks your phone or anything else bad happens. Remember that I’m just some random guy on the internet.

Okay, this is a pretty easy change. Go into your device’s Access Point Names settings. On the Samsung Galaxy S2, that’s: Settings > Wireless & Network > More > Mobile Networks > Access Point Names.

By default, you’ll have three listed:

  • Orange internet
  • Orange Broadband
  • Orange MMS

The Orange Broadband entry seems to be the connection that’s used for tethering and is locked down. If I go into my settings for it, I get an access name of consumerbroadband.

What we’re going to do is create a new connection with the same name. I’d also delete the existing one if possible but that’s also been locked down on my phone (can I still call it “my phone” when so much of its functionality has been disabled by the operator?).

Anyway, create a new APN (access point name) with these settings:

Setting Value
Name Orange Broadband
APN orangeinternet
Proxy Not set
Port Not set
Username Orange
Password Multimedia
Server Not set
MMSC Not set
MMS proxy Not set
MCC 234
MNC 33
Authentication type CHAP
APN type dun
APN Protocol IPv4
Bearer Unspecified

Now, when you switch on your hotspot, you should be getting internet access.

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Kevin Wilson

.NET developer, JavaScript enthusiast, Android user, Pebble wearer, sometime musician and occasional cook.

5 thoughts on “How to Circumvent Orange’s Disabling of Android Wi-Fi Hotspot

    1. Since I’ve written this, Orange and T-Mobile combined to form EE. Tethering is supported from EE so you can just call their support line and get them to enable it. YMMV but it worked for me.

  1. Thanks for this, just in case it helps someone else, i had to actually delete the consumer broadband apn in order for it to work.

  2. Well, this worked for me too. I should contact EE and get it enabled but I can’t be bothered waiting on some help line and getting someone who doesn’t know what I’m talking about. Thanks Kevin!

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