I've tried turning on the portable hot-spot mode on my nexus-one and got a message from my operator saying that my plan doesn't cover data traffic made through the web.operator.com APN, as opposed to mobile.operator.com (my "usual" APN). That made me curious. Does that mean that android switches APNs when the hot-spot feature is active? And if so, is this a built-in feature/configuration option or an operator customization?

Update No, the phone doesn't switch to a different APN, but I'm still not sure what triggered the message from my operator...

Update There's kind of a persistent rumor that European Nexus-One phones get tweaked OSes, see the xda-developers forum threads [1] and [2], or google nexus-one forums [1] and [2]. One of the most likely tweaks seems to be the tagging of hotspot traffic, in order to be able to charge for it differently.

2 Answers 2


Also see http://forum.xda-developers.com/showthread.php?t=734138 for a discussion about how they might. Mechanisms other than APN change might include

  • Time to live
  • Request header
  • Data volume

Answer seems to be probably not.

  • Now that's an interesting read!
    – agnul
    Nov 25, 2011 at 21:49

Yes, Android phones indeed switch to another APN when the hotspot mode is activated. I have deleted all default APNs and replaced it with just one, hey presto, managed to transfer 128GB of personal hotspot when I only have 1GB.

  • How did you do that? It won't let me delete the existing verizon APN or create a new one.
    – Michael
    Jul 7, 2020 at 22:02

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