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How to Get Free WiFi on Android (Step by Step Guide)

Free Wi-Fi on Android is a must for those who want to save on their internet costs. It can help you to stay connected with your friends and family members while at home or on the go. And you do not have to worry about recurrent internet bills.

But how do you connect your Android devices to free Wi-Fi? You have two options – private or public Wi-Fi hotspots. Having a private hotspot means setting up Wi-Fi on your smartphone or a separate device. With public Wi-Fi hotspots, you need login credentials to access.

This article discusses everything you should know to get free WiFi on Android from virtually anywhere in the United States and worldwide. The good thing is that all methods discussed here are legal.

Key Takeaways

  • You can get free Wi-Fi on Android via public hotspots, Wi-Fi apps, smartphone hotspots, and mobile hotspots
  • Accessing the internet via public Wi-Fi has several risks, including loss of privacy, security, and login information to bank accounts
  • You can protect yourself on Public Wi-Fi by installing a VPN, using a firewall, and turning off public sharing on the network

How to Get Free WiFi on Android from a Public Hotspot

Free WiFi on Android

You can access free Wi-Fi on Android from public places offering hotspots. Depending on where you are, the public place could be a museum, supermarket, retail store, restaurant, coffee shop, and hotel.

Besides, some cities have free Wi-Fi hotspots in their town plazas, old towns, and other tourist attractions. Whether you’re a city resident or not, you can easily access Wi-Fi from these places by doing basic research.

The following are some of the public places you will likely find free Wi-Fi:

1. Public Libraries

Public libraries have free Wi-Fi for visitors who come to read books and spend time researching. Some even have comfortable workspaces where users can sit with laptops and complete work-related tasks. Besides public libraries, you may get free Wi-Fi from local bookstores.

2. Public Plazas

Your city’s public plaza is the go-to place for free Wi-Fi. City governments establish these hotspots to enable their residents and visitors to access the internet. Since many people come to connect to Wi-Fi, the speed of the internet could be slower. However, it’s still worth the while if you have no option.

3. Coffee Shops

Coffee shops and cafes such as Starbucks, McDonald’s, and Ben & Jerry’s provide public Wi-Fi to their patrons. The idea is to attract customers with free Wi-Fi and make money selling coffee, food, and ice cream. In some coffee shops, you can stay around for as long as possible after buying a cup of coffee.

4. Trains and Buses

In some cities, trains and buses offer free Wi-Fi for passengers. However, there are limits preventing passengers from streaming videos of a certain quality. That ensures that everyone can access reliable bandwidth.

5. Gym

How often do you have gym sessions? While there, you could enjoy some free internet on your Android device, whether a smartphone or tablet. The good thing is that gyms include the cost of Wi-Fi in their usual charges, so it is completely free.

6. Universities and Colleges

Do you attend a university or college? These institutions have Wi-Fi hotspots for their students and faculty. Even if you aren’t a student or member of the faculty, it’s still possible for you to use their Wi-Fi for free. Since students already have the password, it’s easier for you to get it.

How to Get Free WiFi on Android Using Apps

It can be difficult to know all the free Wi-Fi hotspots at home or in a strange city. However, with the help of specialized apps, you will identify the available hotspots and connect to the internet through them. The following are some of the best apps for finding free Wi-Fi for Android devices:

1. Instabridge

Instabridge is an application that lets you connect to available Wi-Fi networks without necessarily knowing their passwords. After connecting to public Wi-Fi networks, users make them available to other people. Thus, those who know the password to a network first log in and then avail the network to other users of Instabridge.

The application ranks users based on the number of Wi-Fi hotspots they have availed to others. Instabridge is the best way to get free Wi-Fi on your Android devices if you’re traveling abroad. Since there are no restrictions, you can use the data on social networks and any other websites unhindered.

2. WiFi Map

WiFi map is one of the best apps to get free Wi-Fi on Android. It gives its users free, fast, and reliable internet regardless of location. Once you install and open the application, you’ll have access to more than 100 million Wi-Fi hotspots worldwide.

The application has reliable Wi-Fi maps that enable you to find high-quality Wi-Fi hotspots. Once you have found a hotspot, you can share it on Facebook and other social media platforms. Wi-Fi Map is free and requires you to go to Google Play Store to download it.

3. Osmino WiFi

Osmino WiFi is an app that displays graphs of the user’s online traffic. It also tests your internet connection speed and provides a map of all Wi-Fi hotspots near you. You can pick any hotspot and connect to it without data limitations.

You can use Osmino WiFi in many cities worldwide. Besides accessing free Wi-Fi on your Android device, you can also register and share passwords with other users. It makes it possible for you to avoid roaming services in a new city. However, connecting to public networks risks falling prey to hackers.

4. WiFi Analyzer

WiFi Analyzer makes it easier to find the best free hotspots by connecting to the first available one. Besides, it avails information like network strength, trustworthiness, internet reliability, and ranking of the hotspot.

It has a neat, organized interface through which you can see everything you should know about a Wi-Fi network. To understand the display information, you don’t need to have used the application before. The application is available for free in the Google Play Store.

5. WiFi Magic

WiFi Magic has a large repository of public Wi-Fi passwords that users can access freely. Users add passwords to the platform daily, making the hotspots accessible from everywhere. Besides, it displays the hotspots you can connect with or without a password.

After downloading the app, you must create an account with a username and password. Whenever you need to access free Wi-Fi, all you need is to log in to your account. Then you must select a Wi-Fi hotspot to view its name, MAC address, and distance from your location.

6. WiFi Password

You may also use WiFi Password, an application that allows you to get free Wi-Fi wherever you go. It makes it easier for users to access password-blocked networks. Besides availing free Wi-Fi on Android devices, it also marks out unsafe networks to help you avoid connecting to them.

With millions of Wi-Fi hotspots from hundreds of countries worldwide, you should never be disappointed with this application. It also makes it easier to share the public networks accessible to you. All you need is to download it from the Google Play Store.

7. WiFi Warden

Another great option is WiFi Warden, which avails free Wi-Fi on Android devices. It also analyzes the available networks regarding the name, safety, signal strength, MAC address, channel, approximate distance, and frequency.

It has a PIN generator that automatically tests a network before connecting to it. An additional function of the application is to enhance your router’s security. By opening the application, you can know all the people connected to your router.

How to Get Free Wi-Fi on Android with Your Phone

You could find yourself in a place with no public Wi-Fi. In that case, it could be difficult for you to get free Wi-Fi on your Android device. If your phone has 3G, 4G, or 5G capability, you can turn it into a hotspot to provide internet to your devices. Mobile data should be adequate for reading and sending mail or doing basic research.

The risk with this option may lead to you exhausting your monthly data allocation prematurely. That may mean purchasing more data in the middle of the month when you are least prepared for it.

Here is how to turn your Android phone into a hotspot:

  • Step 1: Go to the phone’s Settings.
  • Step 2: Select Wireless & Networks.
  • Step 3: Click Tethering & Portable Hotspot.
  • Step 4: Tap Portable Wi-Fi Hotspot.
  • Step 5: Set a password to secure your account and turn it on by sliding the bar.

iOS users may use the following procedure to turn their phones into hotspots:

  • Step 1: Go to the phone’s Settings.
  • Step 2: Tap Personal Hotspot.
  • Step 3: Set a strong password.
  • Step 4: Push the slider to Allow Others to Join.

How to Get Free Wi-Fi on Android Using a Portable Router

With a portable router, you should be able to supply Wi-Fi to any Android device. A mobile router utilizes 3G, 4G, or 5G connectivity. It is designed to be small and portable. Compared to the router/modem setup, they are relatively inexpensive.

A portable router requires you to sign up for the available data plans from your network carrier. It allows you to avoid depending on unreliable public Wi-Fi hotspots. You’ll get reliable Wi-Fi on your Android device if you’re within network coverage.

Risks Associated with Free Public Wi-Fi

One of the most convenient ways to get free Wi-Fi on Android devices is by using a public hotspot. However, these networks come with risks, such as getting attacked by hackers. The following are some of the risks associated with free public Wi-Fi:

1. Hacking Threats

When on a public Wi-Fi network, your devices are less secure. A hacker may carry out a malicious attack on your device. Some hotspot owners may also want to misuse your access to the network for their benefit.

Try using a virtual private network (VPN) whenever you connect to a public network. A VPN encrypts all online traffic, rendering hackers’ efforts impossible. If you use a smartphone or mobile hotspot, create a strong password to protect yourself from hackers.

2. Fake Hotspots

Free Wi-Fi can be very enticing. Even though they offer free internet, some will likely be fake. Hackers often create fake networks to target vulnerable free Wi-Fi hunters maliciously. Once you connect to the network, the hacker may install malware or steal sensitive information.

Most of the fake hotspots do not have passwords. To avoid falling prey to these networks, only connect to Wi-Fi hotspots protected by strong passwords. Otherwise, you will always be a victim to the criminals lurking all over the internet.

3. Vulner able Wi-Fi Apps

Besides hotspots, Wi-Fi apps may also present loopholes for exposing you to cyber criminals. Some Wi-Fi apps lack safety measures and may list fake hotspots. Before picking any of the available hotspots, check community feedback and opinions.

Besides, some Wi-Fi apps might be trying to perform background scans for requests to join Wi-Fi hotspots nearby. They may then create Wi-Fi heatmaps using this information. With such information, stalkers and hackers can precisely trace you to your residence.

4. Compromised Privacy

As much as it’s exciting to have free Wi-Fi on Android devices, public hotspots usually violate users’ privacy. For example, a café or supermarket may track the sites you visit while browsing to tailor promotional messaging.

Besides, many Wi-Fi apps collect user data, including IP addresses, location, device ID, SSID, and time. Many of these apps are under no obligation to keep this information to themselves. They may share it with third-party organizations and compromise your privacy.

How to Protect Yourself When Using Free Wi-Fi on Android

Did you know that you can protect yourself from the dangers of being on public Wi-Fi? That way, you’ll avoid losing sensitive information such as your emails, banking details, and login credentials. The following are some of the preventive measures you can take to stay safe from hacker-related threats while using public Wi-Fi:

1. Turn Off Public Network Sharing

Whenever you connect to a new hotspot, you’ll receive a popup message asking if you accept others to discover you on the network. Don’t accept sharing your information unless you can trust the network. If possible, ask someone else if it’s a legitimate network. Otherwise, you may give out more information than you want.

2. Use a VPN

A virtual private network or VPN provides secure connectivity to a public Wi-Fi hotspot. Here are three ways a VPN protects you:

  • Encryption: It fully encrypts the connection to the public Wi-Fi network by creating a private tunnel that prevents other users from snooping around. There’s no better way to keep you secure.
  • Hiding IP: A VPN hides your IP to prevent hackers from finding your device. Hence you cannot be tracked by websites and Internet Service Providers (ISPs).
  • Other Security Features: VPNs offer extra security features such as a kill switch for cutting the internet connection when the VPN drops. Another useful feature is Threat Protection for blocking suspicious websites and annoying ads.

3. Enabling a Firewall

Firewalls may have incessant notifications and annoying popups, pushing you to disable them. However, you should never connect to a public Wi-Fi hotspot without having your firewall on. Having fallen for the allure of free Wi-Fi on your Android devices, you may end up feeling deceptively secure. Always allow your firewall to control the sites you can or cannot access to get robust protection.

The Bottom Line

Now that you know how to get free Wi-Fi on Android, what are you waiting for? Go to a public place, install a Wi-Fi app, tether the internet from your phone, or acquire a mobile hotspot. Each of these methods works perfectly well for any Android device.

When using free Wi-Fi, you should be careful not to fall prey to hackers. The best way to stay safe when connected to public Wi-Fi is to use a VPN or firewall. Otherwise, you may lose your privacy, information, and money.

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