How to enable the Personal Hotspot in iOS on Cell C

I tweeted Cell C a while ago and asked about enabling the personal hotspot feature on my iPad. I bought the R1 299 pre-paid offer where you get 24GB over a 12 month period (2GB per month with no rollover). I bought this because the price is really good compared to contract data prices (I previously had a secondary SIM on my MTN contract in my iPad and I used a lot of data and my bill was enormous) and because I wanted a backup for our office ADSL which is erratic (Telkom can’t give us stable and decent connections). My plan for the office is to switch my iPad’s personal hotspot on when needed. Unfortunately when I looked for the option in my iPad’s settings after installing the SIM, the option wasn’t there.

This presented a challenge because I couldn’t do one of the things I wanted the SIM for so I waited for Cell C to get back to me. This morning I was chatting to Reyaan Boltman this morning on Twitter and did a little Googling and found the answer in this article on MyBroadBand. This article prompted me to check out the data settings on the Cell C site and I figured it out from there. The problem on my side is that I had no APN (access point) details in my settings but didn’t think much of it because my device was connected to the network. The iPad needs those settings to enable the personal hotspot. Before I get to that, it is important to note that only the iPad 3 and iPhone 4 (onwards) running iOS5 and up support personal hotspots!

First, go to your Mobile Data settings:

Type “internet” into both APN fields in your iPad (the iPhone will probably have similar fields):

When you type in the details, tap in the next field before moving on to the next item or going back to main settings. I typed in the APN details on the one field and immediately went back to Settings and it didn’t stick. Tapping in another field seems to work a bit like “Enter” and captures the new setting. From there, go back to General and then select “Network”:

It may take a few moments but you should see the Personal Hotspot option appear (you may need to have your iPad on mobile data, as opposed to WiFi, for the device to pick up on the new settings – guessing at this).






11 responses to “How to enable the Personal Hotspot in iOS on Cell C”

  1. Rik avatar

    I had the same problem, thanks for your post….. Works brilliantly 🙂

  2. Vian avatar

    Do you pay extra for personal hotspot?or does it use your internet bundle?

    1. Paul avatar

      I think you just use your existing data bundle.

  3. Justin avatar

    Hi Paul, thank you very much for your advice on activating personal hotspot on ipad with Cell C simcard. Very simple but effective! Thanks again.

    1. Paul avatar

      You’re welcome.

  4. Net avatar

    I don’t have a setting for Internet Tethering APN…only Cellular Data APN

  5. Corne avatar

    I bought my ipad mini (dated back to 2013) from USA while i lived there. I don’t have the APN you are talking about. Any ideas ?

    1. Paul avatar

      If it’s 3/4G enabled, do you have a SIM in the iPad?

      1. Corne avatar

        yes, i got the new SIM from Cell C yesterday. It is for the 200 G plan for 12 months. The internet on the ipad is working, i just can’t hotspot with it like i could’ve with Vodacom.

  6. Corne avatar

    ok, i finally found how to work it. Go to “settings”. select “cellular data”. go to “APN Settings”. type “internet” in all three boxes where they ask “APN”. No username or password. Cell C seems to have moved their settings around. HTH someone else.

    1. Paul avatar

      Great, glad you worked it out.

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