Laptop won’t connect to iPhone’s hotspot [Windows 10 Guide]

Radu Tyrsina
by Radu Tyrsina
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  • Many owners of iPhone 5 or iPhone 5s complained about the inability to connect their Windows 10 laptops to the WiFi hotspots of their phones.
  • There might be several problems producing this issue but this guide is going to help you fix every one of them.
  • For any information or solution for online issues, we recommend the Web & Cloud page
  • If you're facing other software or hardware problems, you will definitely find a solution in our Tech Troubleshooting Hub.

 

What can I do if Windows 10 doesn't connect to iPhone's WiFi hotspot

More trouble for Apple as iPhone users, especially those that have iPhone 5 or iPhone 5s, can’t connect their WiFi hotspots to Windows 10 laptops.

Many users have been complaining that they can’t manage to connect their Windows 10 laptops to the WiFi hotspots they have created on their iPhones.

People tend to use their iPhone to create wireless hotspots, but sometimes issues with wireless hotspots can occur. Since this is such a common problem, we’re going to cover the following issues:

  • Windows 10 can’t connect to iPhone hotspot – This is a relatively common problem with Windows 10, but you should be able to fix it using one of our solutions.
  • Laptop won’t connect to iPhone 6, 7 hotspot – This issue affects both laptop and desktop PCs and both iPhone 6 and 7.
  • Windows 10 iPhone hotspot Can’t connect to this network – We already covered how to fix Windows 10 Can’t connect to this network message in one of our older articles, so be sure to check it out.
  • Windows 10 iPhone WiFi won’t stay connected, turns off, randomly disconnects – If your Wi-Fi frequently disconnects on Windows you can experience many problems.
  • Windows 10 iPhone WiFi yellow triangle, exclamation mark – To fix this problem, check out our article on how to fix Wi-Fi exclamation mark on Windows 10.
  • Windows 10 iPhone WiFi hotspot not working –  We already wrote a guide on what to do if your mobile hotspot isn’t working on Windows 10.

As you can see, this has happened in Windows Vista as well, and also with an iPhone 4.

First of all, to make sure that the Windows 10 computer is the culprit, try and connect another device to the WiFi hotspot that you created using your iPhone.

If the problem persists, here’s what you can do.

What can I do if I can’t connect to the iPhone’s WiFi hotspot?

1. Troubleshoot the Personal hotspot problems

iPhone

  1. Confirm that your iOS device, computer, and wireless plan all meet the system requirements for Personal Hotspot.
  2. Verify that Personal Hotspot is enabled by tapping Settings > General > Cellular > Personal Hotspot.
  3. Verify the Internet connection on your iOS device by tapping Safari and loading a new webpage.
  4. If one connection type doesn’t work, try another (for example, instead of connecting using Wi-Fi, try using USB or Bluetooth).
  5. Try disabling and reenabling Personal Hotspot from Settings > Personal Hotspot or Settings > General > Cellular > Personal Hotspot.
  6. Install the latest version of iOS. Tap Settings > General > Software Update.
  7. Reset network settings by tapping Settings > General > Reset > Reset Network Settings.
  8. If none of the previous steps resolves your issue, restore the iPhone.

Can’t restore your iPhone because of an error? Don’t worry, we’ve got the right solution for you


2. Update network drivers

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3. Troubleshoot the WiFi hotspot problems

  1. Turn the Personal Hotspot off.
  2. Verify if the Wi-Fi is ON in Settings > Wi-Fi.
  3. Turn the Personal Hotspot back on.
  4. If another device is unable to join your Wi-Fi network, ensure that the user enters the Wi-Fi password correctly.
  5. If the device cannot see your Wi-Fi network, verify your device name (Windows may not properly display a device name that uses non-ASCII characters).
  6. Verify how many devices are currently using your Personal Hotspot. Depending on your wireless carrier and, the maximum number of Wi-Fi connections may be limited to three at one time.
  7. If the other device still cannot connect, try turning the Wi-Fi off and on again on the device. Verify that your device can see other Wi-Fi networks.

4. Change the name of your iPhone

  1. Go to Settings > General > About > Name.
  2. Now click on X icon to remove your current name.
  3. Enter a new name and you’re good to go.

Note: A few users reported that removing extra spaces from the hotspot name fixed the problem for them, so be sure to try that as well.

Once you change the hotspot name, your PC will be able to connect to the iPhone WiFi hotspot again.


5. Use the Forget option for the WiFi hotspot

  1. Click the Wi-Fi icon in the bottom right corner.
  2. Now locate your Wi-Fi hotspot, right-click it, and choose to Forget from the menu.

If you need more info on how to delete or forget unused Wi-Fi networks on Windows 10, take a look at our dedicated guide.

Try to connect to it again and you’ll be asked to enter a password. After doing that, the Wi-Fi network will start working.


6. Change the iPhone’s hotspot password

According to users, if Windows doesn’t connect to iPhone WiFi hotspot, the issue might be your hotspot’s password. However, you can fix this problem simply by changing your hotspot’s password.

The problem should be resolved and you’ll be able to connect to the iPhone’s hotspot again.


7. Uninstall the Intel Proset wireless software

  1. Open the Settings app and go to Apps section.
    Windows 10 iPhone WiFi yellow triangle
  2. Select Intel Proset wireless software from the list and click on Uninstall button.
    Windows 10 iPhone WiFi Unidentified network
  3. Follow the instructions on the screen to remove it.

Once you remove the software, restart your PC.

Note: If you don’t use Intel Proset software, be sure to remove your wireless software and check if that helps.

If you need additional info on how to uninstall programs and apps in Windows 10, take a look at this dedicated guide to find out more.

Let us know if this has done the trick for you. If not, maybe you can share with us your detailed problem and we’ll try to find a solution together.

Also, if you did manage to resolve this issue, do share it with us to help those in need.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in December 2017 and has been since revamped and updated in August 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.

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