Now before you go and get yourself tied up in knots over that title let me state that I love tethering and find it very useful. That’s why I was quite surprised and taken aback by an article posted by Mike Elgan recently on Computerworld that sets out to prove Why tethering is stupid and unnecessary. Before you start lobbing hate grenades at Mr. Elgan read through his article and see where he’s coming from.
First up what is tethering exactly? We hear that term a lot and some folks I know have no idea what it means. Tethering is the act of connecting your smartphone, Blackberry, Windows Mobile or other, to your laptop so you can get connected to the Internet without the benefit of WiFi. Many smartphones today have 3G connectivity and it can be used to get a laptop onto the web by connecting them to the notebook. This can be done by a USB cable or even wirelessly via Bluetooth. It can be the difference between not being able to connect to the web and getting some work done and I find it pretty darn useful.
What Elgan is stating in his article is he finds the tethering process itself to be awkward and clumsy and not worth the effort most of the time. I don’t find it to be that way myself once the connection is set up the first time subsequent connections are relatively pain-free for me.
The Computerworld article is really a slam at the pricing practices of the US phone carriers that are "greedy" and make tethering necessary at all. Mr. Elgan wants to see cheap easy connectivity for everyone no matter what, and who can argue with that? So how about you? Do you tether and how do you find the process?