Why is My iPhone Personal Hotspot Slow & How to Make It Faster

Your iPhone personal hotspot could be slow due to your carrier, weak cell reception, and unoptimized settings in your iPhone. To make it faster, you can disable Low Data Mode, minimize the distance between devices, optimize cell reception, close background apps, and restart your iPhone.

Hi, I’m Devansh. I often use my iPhone 13’s personal hotspot to connect my devices to the Internet while traveling. In this article, I’ll explain why your iPhone personal hotspot might be slow. I’ll also give you five effective tips for maximizing your personal hotspot speed.

If you’re using your iPhone personal hotspot but are getting a lower speed than expected, keep reading!

Why is Your iPhone Personal Hotspot Slow?

There might be many reasons your iPhone personal hotspot is slow, ranging from your carrier, cellular network, and iPhone itself.

  • Carrier: Since your carrier powers your personal hotspot, it’s possible that they might be limiting the network speed based on the plan you’ve opted for.
  • Cellular network: If the cell tower is too crowded and you’re getting weak cell reception, that can also lead to a slow and laggy personal hotspot.
  • iPhone: It’s also possible that the network settings in your iPhone aren’t optimized, or there are too many apps running in the background and hogging network bandwidth.

Now that you have a grasp of why your iPhone personal hotspot is slow let’s go through five tips to make it faster.

5 Tips to Make Your iPhone Hotspot Faster

Now, let’s get to the fun part! Here are five tips to boost your iPhone’s personal hotspot speed.

Tip #1: Disable Low Data Mode and Enable 5G

If you’ve enabled Low Data Mode, it’ll economize data usage. Although this can be good if you want to keep your data usage and bill low, it can also lower network speed.

To disable it, open Settings, go to Mobile Data, Mobile Data Options, (also called Cellular Data and Cellular Data Options, respectively), and toggle off Low Data Mode.

In addition, you can use 5G if you own an iPhone 12 or later (if 5G is available with your carrier). Before you do this, open Settings, tap Personal Hotspot, and disable Maximum Compatibility if it is enabled.

Now, in the Settings app, go to Mobile Data, Mobile Data Options, select Voice & Data, and enable 5G On or 5G Auto. To boost speed further, you can choose Allow more data on 5G in Data Mode. Check this Support page for info.

Tip #2: Optimize Cellular Reception

When using your iPhone personal hotspot, you rely on the cellular connection. So, the hotspot speed hinges a lot on optimal cellular reception.

Check the bars at the top-right corner of your iPhone screen; how many are there? If there are less than three, apply the tried-and-tested methods: place your iPhone near a window, elevate it, or go outdoors.

Tip #3: Minimize Distance

When using a wireless network, too much distance between devices can lower speed. I recommend you keep the devices only a maximum of 15 to 20 feet apart if possible. The less distance to cover, the better.

Along with distance, try to minimize both electronic and physical interference. Electronic interference could come from other phones and Bluetooth devices. Physical interference refers to walls and furniture.

Tip #4: Minimize Background Activity

Apps running in the background can take up network bandwidth and slow things down. They might be downloading updates or checking for the latest content.

First, quit all unnecessary apps. On your iPhone, swipe up from the bottom of the screen and pause in the middle. If your iPhone has a home button, double-click it. You’ll be able to see the previews of all active apps. Just swipe up with three fingers to close all of them.

If you want to further ensure that your mobile data isn’t being used by apps running in the background, you can disable Background App Refresh. Open Settings, go to General, and Background App Refresh. Tap on Background App Refresh on this page and select Wi-Fi.

Now, apps on your iPhone won’t try to access the Internet when using your personal hotspot. They’ll only do it when you’re connected to a WiFi network.

It’s also possible that your iPhone is downloading updates for apps while you’re using your hotspot. To stop this, open Settings, go to App Store and scroll down to Mobile Data. Here, toggle off Automatic Downloads or set it to Always Ask.

Tip #5: Restart your iPhone

Lastly, you can restart your iPhone. This would take care of any software bugs and give it a fresh start. In addition, you can also consider resetting network settings. For this, open Settings, go to General, scroll down to Reset, and tap on Reset Network Settings.


Here are two common questions about iPhone personal hotspots.

How to Increase Hotspot Connection Limit on iPhone?

Since your cell carrier powers the personal hotspot, they also determine the number of devices that can join it at once. So, you can contact your carrier for further information on this. It also depends on your iPhone model.

How to Remove Members From Family Sharing for Personal Hotspots?

Removing a few members from Family Sharing can lower the total connected devices and thus increase speed. If you’re the family organizer, open Settings, tap on your account name, and Family Sharing. Here, select a member you’d like to remove from the network.


If your iPhone personal hotspot is slow, it could be that your carrier is slowing it down, depending on your plan, the cell reception is weak, or your iPhone settings aren’t optimized. Read this Support page if your personal hotspot has stopped working entirely.

If it’s slow, following the five tips—disabling LDM, minimizing distance, optimizing cellular reception, lowering background activity, and restarting your iPhone—will boost it! Check out this article if you’d like to change your hotspot name.

Did you boost your iPhone’s hotspot speed by following the five tips above? Are there any extra tips you’d like to share? Feel free to let me know in the comments!

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