We’ve all been there — your friends are over, and they want to connect to the home Wi-Fi network, but you’ve forgotten the password and lost the little scrap of paper you scribbled it down on all those years ago. Luckily, you can share the network directly from your phone with a bit of preparation. Sharing a Wi-Fi network between Apple devices is so simple you barely have to think about it, and Android 10 introduced Wi-Fi network sharing via a QR code right in the settings app.
You would be remiss to assume it is as simple to share a Wi-Fi network from an iPhone to an Android device, though — making it happen requires fiddling with a shortcut and even then, it’s far from convenient. Let’s look at how you can share a Wi-Fi network from an iPhone to an Android.
How to share a Wi-Fi network from iOS to Android using the Shortcut app
As mentioned before, iOS has no native way to share a Wi-Fi network with an Android device, but we will explain how to set up a shortcut to more or less emulate the QR code sharing method found on Android phones — with a few caveats , of course. You will need to know the Wi-Fi password to set up the QR code, and you will need to manually set up a shortcut for each network you want to share. The Shortcuts app, on iPhones with iOS 13 and above by default, allows you to automate processes by running scripts and preprogrammed routines.
There is a small chance your device will not have the Shortcuts app installed by default. If this is the case, go to the App Store, search for shortcutsand install the shortcuts app (ensuring it is the app published by Apple) like you would any other.
In this case, you’ll need a third-party shortcut from ShortcutsGallery.com. While it shouldn’t be an issue most of the time, take caution whenever you’re using third-party shortcuts. There is potential for harm and data loss if you accidentally download a malicious shortcut or incorrectly program.
How to add the Share Wi-Fi shortcut to your iPhone
- Open Safari and navigate to shortcutsgallery.com/shortcuts/share-wi-fi to find the Share Wi-Fi shortcut.
- tap Get Shortcut towards the bottom of the display to start the download and open the shortcut in the Shortcuts app.
- If you are prompted to open the shortcut in the Shortcuts app, tap Open.
- Scroll down to the bottom of the Shortcuts app until you see the Add Shortcut button. Tap it to add the shortcut to your iPhone.
Now that you have added the shortcut to your phone, you need to adjust the shortcut so that it works as intended — namely, you need to add the Wi-Fi password you want to be able to share. Pull out the little scrap of paper you scribbled the Wi-Fi password on. Once armed with your Wi-Fi password, open the shortcuts app to start editing the Share WiFi shortcut as follows:
- on the My Shortcuts page, find the Share WiFi shortcut.
- tap the three dots in the top right corner of the shortcut to edit the shortcut.
- Look for the input block called Text that has Add WiFi password.
- Replace Add WiFi password with the password for the Wi-Fi network you want to share.
- tap the cross symbol in the top right corner of the screen to save the changes to your Share Wi-Fi shortcut.
You can now tap the Share WiFi shortcut within the shortcuts app to display a QR code with the Wi-Fi information for the network you’re currently connected to. If you want to save yourself a few clicks, you can also add this shortcut to your home screen for easy access without opening the shortcuts app.
For the shortcut to work, you will need to be connected to the network you are trying to share. If you want to share a different network, you can duplicate the Share Wi-Fi shortcut you just created. go back to step two, where we edited the shortcut, and enter the correct Wi-Fi password. If you make more than one Share Wi-Fi shortcut, it’s a good idea to rename them appropriately.
If you are signed in using your iCloud account on your iPhone, the shortcut should also sync to any other devices signed in with that same iOS account, meaning you’ll get the same functionality out of your iMac, iPad, Mac Mini, and MacBooks .
How to use a QR code to join a Wi-Fi network on Android
Now we know how to create the Wi-Fi QR code on your iPhone, but it’s equally important to understand how to use that QR code on an Android device. There are a few different ways to scan a QR code on an Android device, and which you should use will depend on your Android version and the device manufacturer’s software skin.
Android’s fragmentation is both its biggest strength and biggest weakness — but the most convenient way to go about this is to use the camera app, Google Assistant, or Google Lens. If you are on Android 8 or newer, you should be able to scan the QR code and connect to the network directly from the Camera app:
- open the Camera app.
- Go to photo mode
- Point the phone at the QR code, make sure the QR code is centered and well-lit, and hold it in frame for a few seconds. You should see a pop-up appear prompting you to connect to the Wi-Fi network.
- In the pop-up prompting you to connect to the network, tap Connect to network to connect.
If the above steps did not work, and you are using a device with Android 9 or newer, you should check the Camera app settings to ensure that the Scan QR codes option is enabled. This will differ from device to device, but generally you simply need to open the Camera app, find Settings (it should be a cog at the edge of the screen, usually at the top in a corner) and locate Scan QR codes and enable it.
If you’ve tried scanning the QR code with your phone camera and you’re having no luck, you can also use the Google app to scan QR codes:
- open the Google app.
- in the Search bar at the top of the screen, you should see the small camera icon. Tap the camera icon in the Search bar to open Google Lens.
- The Google Lens main screen will have a preview of your device’s gallery and a small camera preview window at the top of the page.
- Expand the camera preview window by dragging it down from anywhere within the window.
- Once the Google Lens Camera screen is fully expanded, point the camera at the QR code on your iPhone, ensuring that the QR code is well-lit and centered in the frame.
- hold the QR code in the center of the Google Lens Camera preview window for a few seconds until an outline appears around the QR code.
- Once there is an outline around it, tapping the QR code will freeze the frame and take you to a new window previewing the image you just took.
- in the preview with the QR code, there should be a prompt at the bottom of the screen titled QR code: WiFi with a join network button. if there is no QR code: WiFi prompt, tap the QR code in the image to display the prompt.
- in the popup, tap join network to connect to the network.
Android just does some things better
Despite being unnecessarily involved — and not incredibly useful unless you are sharing one Wi-Fi network a lot — if you’ve followed the steps correctly, you should now be able to share a Wi-Fi network from iOS to Android with one simple click .
If you’re tired of all the hoops you need to jump through to do simple things like share Wi-Fi networks — a process built into Android natively — or you’d like to try something new, why not jump the fence to Android? There are plenty of fantastic Android phones around, whether you’re shopping for the best of the best or you want to spend a little less on a budget device.
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