If you want to share the internet connection of your iPhone with others, you can use the personal hotspot. This allows the phone to establish its own Wi-Fi connection allowing other devices to connect to the internet.
Thanks to the support for 5G and WiFi 802.11ax (WiFi 6) in the iPhone 12, the hotspot iPhone 12 Hotspot Enable function has been given a new extra option. In the hotspot settings of the iPhone ‘Maximum compatibility’ can be found.
Unfortunately, Apple does not provide any further information in the hotspot settings as to what this function actually means.
When you analyze the hotspot signal with a WiFi sniffer app such as WiFi Explorer, you will see the effect of this new option.
2.4Ghz or 5Ghz WiFi hotspot
The hotspot function of the iPhone 11 and earlier created a WiFi access point based on 2.4Ghz. The iPhone 12 and newer now uses 5Ghz for the hotspot function as standard.
Because the iPhone 12 can achieve high speeds on the mobile 5G network, Apple has decided to use 5Ghz WiFi for the hotspot function as standard. 2.4Ghz WiFi has a maximum limit of 150 Mbps, the 5Ghz band can reach speeds of up to 1200 Mbps.
The standard use of the 5Ghz hotspot by Apple is completely separate from whether your iPhone 12 is connected to a mobile 5G network or not. Even when connected to 4G will be the hotspot standard use 5Ghz on iPhone 12.
However, using 5Ghz WiFi can cause compatibility issues when older WiFi devices want to connect to your iPhone 12 hotspot. By enabling the option ‘Maximize compatibility’, you ensure that your iPhone uses 12, 2.4Ghz WiFi for the hotspot.
Using 2.4Ghz wifi for hotspot on iPhone 12
You can enable 2.4Ghz hotspot compatibility on an iPhone 12 (or newer) using the steps below:
- Go to the iOS Settings
- Personal hotspot
- Maximize Compatibility
When you analyze the WiFi signal afterwards, you will see that the 2.4Ghz band is used for the hotspot instead of 5Ghz.