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Hack Brings iPhone Tethering to AT&T Customers [Updated]

One feature Apple touted in iPhone OS 3.0 was tethering, or the ability to share your phone's wireless data connection with your computer. AT&T, however, isn't supporting that feature yet, but a relatively easy hack lets iPhone owners take advantage of the feature today.

The clever people at MacMegasite show how iPhone owners can turn on their built-in tethering feature with the help of little more than a carrier settings file (available from Gizmodo), and a Terminal command.

iPhone users have also been pointing Mobile Safari to a special URL at the Phone Tweaks Web site that installs tethering, too. The Web page uses the iPhone's Install Profile feature to enable tethering, and in TMO's tests, Visual Voicemail continued to work properly.

Activating tethering from the Phone Tweaks Web site.

According to GitHub, Visual Voicemail can be restored by connecting your iPhone to iTunes, Option-clicking the Restore button and navigating to /Library/iTunes/iPhone Carrier Support in your Mac's Home directory.

While enabling tethering isn't difficult, it may not make your cell service provider happy. O2, for example, has begun warning U.K. customers that they could lose their service by enabling tethering without paying for an add-on package.

7 comments from the community.

You can post your own below.

ChoMomma said:

I think if your going to pay $30/month for an unlimited data plan for your iPhone it shouldn’t matter if you are using your iPhone or have your Macbook Pro tethered to it.

Comcast doesn’t care if I use an iPhone over my home wifi connection.


Guest said:

Tried the above hack and all went well until I try to fix visual voice mail. I don’t find Library/iTunes/iPhone Carrier Support in my home folder. HELP! (Always ensure you have all the ingredients of a recipe before breaking the eggs!)


Dave Hamilton said:

On my Mac the folder is ~/Library/iTunes/iPhone Carrier Support and it contains ATT_US.ipcc modified Feb 13, 2009


Guest said:

I’ve recently moved to a new computer without using Migration Assistant. (Had cruft left over from a Performa 638, PB Pismo, and an aluminum Powerbook that had to be left behind. YIKES!) But since I backup backup backup I found the iPhone Carrier Support folder in one of many backups and is probably on the 15” PB. Mine too was dated Feb 2009. Restoring with that file did the trick. Tethering AND Visual Voicemail. Not sure why there isn’t an iPhone Carrier Support folder on the new system even after the restore.


David from NH said:

This does not seem to work on the iPhone 2g, any one else have any luck? frown but I’m getting a 3g S tomorrow smile)


Boxav8r said:

Concur… it doesn’t work on the original iPhone.  Changes some settings to let you ‘see’ “Cellular Data Network” when you go “settings>General>Network”.  But there is NO option to turn on tethering.  C’est la vie!


jeff said:

I tried this.  Tethering works, but now VVM visual voice mail is gone.  i’ve tried to RESET network settings on the iphone (Settings >> General >> Reset >> Reset Network Settings) but this didn’t work.  I want my VVM back!  I use a PC (not a Mac).  Does anyone have a fix for this?  Help!


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