Chrome OS Instant Tethering Comes to More Android Phones, Here’s How to Do It

Instant Sharing menu on an Android phone

Google's "Chromez better" pairing with Chromebooks and Android phones allows Pixel and Nexus users to automatically share a data connection between the phone and the Chromebook.

Given its limited availability to date, you would not be surprised at not being familiar with the Instant Tethering feature. But in a nutshell, this allows an Android device to automatically connect to a Chromebook when the "book" does not detect a usable Wi-Fi connection.

As I mentioned earlier, this is part of Google's "Better Together" feature in Chrome OS, which is an attempt to pair laptop / phone computer more like a Mac. Once connected, users can use Smart Lock, Instant Tethering and even send SMS from their Chromebook. The fact is that it was only compatible with Google branded phones (Nexus, Pixel). Until now.

Of course, its availability is still quite limited. It is only available on the Chrome OS development channel, and you will need a compatible phone. No baby. Before explaining how to make it work, however, there are a few things to note:

  • You will still need a compatible modem plan. If you do not have a modem on your mobile plan, it will not work. Google does not want to help you trick operators. Sorry.
  • Your phone must be compatible. Before you set up your Chromebook, go to Settings> Google and search for "Instant Sharing" on your phone. If it does not, it will not work.

With that, let's do this thing.

Step one: connect your Android phone

Assuming you are on the developer channel, go ahead and go to the settings menu of your Chromebook. From there, scroll to "Connected Devices" and click the Configure button.

Chrome OS Connect device menu entry

In this new menu, tap the drop-down menu on the left side and choose your phone. Then click on the Accept and Continue button.

Connect a phone

You will need to enter your password to continue, but you can then leave. The connection should be done quickly enough.

Password menu

The Connected Devices menu entry will then display all available options: Smart Lock, Instant Tethering, and Messages. If Instant Tethering is not introduce yourself for yourself, then proceed to the next step. If it Is show, then you can jump to the third step.

The Connected devices menu on Chrome OS

Second step: activate the instant connection flag

If the "Instant Tethering" option does not appear, you must enable it in the Chrome OS indicators menu. Open a new browser tab by entering the following:

chrome: // flags / # snapshot

Instant Fastener Flag

In the drop-down menu, choose "On".

Then click the Restart button at the bottom.

Step Three: Enable Instant Connection Sharing on Your Phone

Finally, you must use Instant Tethering on your phone. To get started, first open the Settings menu and scroll to Google.

The System Settings menu on an Android phone

In the Google menu, look for the Instant Tethering option.

Instant sharing in the Google menu

Tap this menu and enable the "Provide Data Connection" option.

Provide a data connection from an Android phone

The system can also automatically notify you to enable this option when Wi-Fi is disconnected, but you can activate it preemptively to maintain a length in advance.


With that, your phone should automatically provide a data connection to your Chromebook when it is not connected to an already used Wi-Fi connection. However, it seems that the deployment is slow and is not yet available on all Android phones. I've seen user reports running it on Samsung, Nokia and OnePlus devices, although it's not yet available on my OnePlus 6T, so your mileage may vary.

via Android font, About Chromebooks

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