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Old 11-09-2013, 16:43
Juc1
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Hi all,

I think that new phones like the Sony Xperia Z can do tethering without the need for an external app - have I got that right? Also I read that in the USA the networks tried to limit or block free tethering ie to force customers to pay extra for tethering but that this blocking of tethering was ruled illegal. So what about the UK?

This UK article says "It's worth remembering to check your network's terms and conditions on tethering" - obviously you need to keep within the data limits of your plan but apart from that can / do UK networks block / limit free tethering?

Thanks...
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Old 11-09-2013, 16:55
madscotsboy
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Yeah Android devices can tether without the need for 3rd party apps. its built into the wireless networks settings.

For the best tethering plans in the Uk, see here...

http://forums.digitalspy.co.uk/showthread.php?t=1804772
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Old 11-09-2013, 17:30
enapace
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The eu is currently writing up a bill making the blocking of tethering illegal and to lower roaming charges. It should be published tomorrow I will be interested if it passes or not.
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Old 11-09-2013, 17:56
Juc1
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Yeah Android devices can tether without the need for 3rd party apps. its built into the wireless networks settings.
So what is the point of Android tethering apps?
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Old 11-09-2013, 18:46
!!11oneone
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Some handset are crippled by the networks, so you can't tether. The apps should get around it, if yours is.

Most also date back a couple of years when it wasn't part of the system itself.
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Old 11-09-2013, 20:32
Juc1
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Most also date back a couple of years when it wasn't part of the system itself.
Yeah I think that older phones / versions of Android need an app but new phones / versions of Android (eg Sony Xperia Z = Android 4.1) don't need an app.

Last edited by Juc1 : 11-09-2013 at 21:00. Reason: typo
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Old 11-09-2013, 20:46
Juc1
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If you are within the data limits of your plan then I don't see why there needs to be a separate charge for tethering. It seems to be a rip off

The eu is currently writing up a bill making the blocking of tethering illegal...
Good but I expect that would take a while...
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Old 11-09-2013, 21:19
enapace
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Good but I expect that would take a while...
Won't be to long it is meant to be published tomorrow so then it only has to be voted upon.
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Old 11-09-2013, 21:20
chopoff
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How do the networks know you are tethering, anyway?
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Old 11-09-2013, 21:22
enapace
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How do the networks know you are tethering, anyway?
The MAC address I believe of the product using the service.
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Old 11-09-2013, 21:29
chopoff
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The MAC address I believe of the product using the service.
I didn't think MAC addresses were publicly exposed, though? And even if they were, given the device to actually talk to the mobile operator is the phone, wouldn't that be the exposed address?

They could sniff user agents when you try to browse the web I guess, but that's easily sorted - and indeed I gather if you did everything over a secure layer they wouldn't be able to sniff anyway.
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Old 11-09-2013, 21:37
adi_carnat
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the operator knows if u thether by the size and type of the browser. laptop browsers have different codes to connect to the net. the operator sees if u using a google chrome browser on your phone or on your laptop.

that s how they know
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Old 11-09-2013, 21:39
paulbrock
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Less battery is used if you tether using Bluetooth....
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Old 11-09-2013, 21:39
chopoff
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the operator knows if u thether by the size and type of the browser. laptop browsers have different codes to connect to the net. the operator sees if u using a google chrome browser on your phone or on your laptop.

that s how they know
Yeah - that is a user agent, and they can't use that technique as when you select 'request desktop site' in a browser on a mobile, it no longer sends the mobile user agent, it sends the desktop one so websites are duped in to believing you are using a desktop.
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Old 11-09-2013, 22:17
pi r squared
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The way they know is exactly the same way your phone "knows" where it needs to send the information to or the same way your router "knows" which device in the house it needs to send the webpage to. The packet data it sends and receives has unique information identifying the device it is being sent from/to. The Android tethering device includes this information otherwise it would have no clue what to do with it once it received the data it asked for.

This is how they can tell, even if you tethered another identical Android device to it with exactly the same user agents etc., they would still know.
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Old 11-09-2013, 23:18
chopoff
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The way they know is exactly the same way your phone "knows" where it needs to send the information to or the same way your router "knows" which device in the house it needs to send the webpage to. The packet data it sends and receives has unique information identifying the device it is being sent from/to. The Android tethering device includes this information otherwise it would have no clue what to do with it once it received the data it asked for.

This is how they can tell, even if you tethered another identical Android device to it with exactly the same user agents etc., they would still know.
Yes, but what is that information and how does it differ for a mobile to a PC?
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Old 11-09-2013, 23:25
jabbamk1
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Yes, but what is that information and how does it differ for a mobile to a PC?
packet sniffing.

You wouldn't expect windows update to run on an android phone would you?

Networks can see the different type of data you're using.
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Old 12-09-2013, 00:45
machare
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Some of the apps also let you change the IP addresses which are used. I certainly can't do this on my Samsung phone.
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Old 13-09-2013, 17:56
Juc1
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The eu is currently writing up a bill making the blocking of tethering illegal and to lower roaming charges. It should be published tomorrow I will be interested if it passes or not.
Are there any links about this bill - I have heard about the roaming thing in the news but not the tethering...
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Old 13-09-2013, 19:23
!!11oneone
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packet sniffing.

You wouldn't expect windows update to run on an android phone would you?

Networks can see the different type of data you're using.

The don't use packet sniffing.

The networks know via user agents and apps identifying themselves, as you say Windows Update might be a giveaway. But it's simpler than that. When you look at IP logs, you can see what browser, version and OS. If something identifies as "OSX" or "Windows 7" over a mobile network, then know for sure you're tethering.

I've never, ever been caught doing it.
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Old 13-09-2013, 19:25
jabbamk1
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They do use packet sniffing.
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Old 14-09-2013, 15:57
Chris1973
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The eu is currently writing up a bill making the blocking of tethering illegal
Won't the networks just counteract this by allowing tethering, but just throttle it to whatever speed they wish when its detected?. They could easily still make tethering unattractive by reducing the speed to Edge or lower.
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Old 14-09-2013, 19:55
machare
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Won't the networks just counteract this by allowing tethering, but just throttle it to whatever speed they wish when its detected?. They could easily still make tethering unattractive by reducing the speed to Edge or lower.
It might lead to a reduction in the number of unlimited contracts. The way I see it, if your contract allows xGB per month then you should be able to use that data anyway you like, (perhaps with the exception of VOIP)
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Old 16-09-2013, 14:08
Juc1
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If you are within the data limits of your plan then I don't see why there needs to be a separate charge for tethering. It seems to be a rip off
Looking at this again I now think that O2, Vodafone and EE no longer make any separate charge for tethering (at least on a contract anyway) ie the only cost would be if you exceed your data allowance. So it seems that Three is the odd one out for making a separate charge at least on some contracts = 5 per month for 1GB of tethering.
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Old 16-09-2013, 14:20
Philip Wales
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T-Mobile won't allow it on the iPhone, not sure if this is an Apple thing or T-Mobile. You have to pay to allow tethering.
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