Oh Where, Oh Where Has My Tethering Gone?

Being a bit of a tech-head I'm always up for looking out for the latest CE products, but I'm also looking out for the best deals. Whether it be the latest deal on a PS3 or Xbox 360, the latest plasma or LCD, or next generation camera, I sort through it all and get the best deal for me.

I'm no different when it comes to mobile phone carriers. For the past couple of years I've been with an Optus reseller. I have found the network good and the prices great.

However, they don't have an iPhone plan because they basically sell you the SIM card and you then choose the call and data plan from there. Some how I had managed to have the iPhone 3GS 32GB not only work well, but also allow me to tether to my notebook pc. I got the benefit of the low price and also the benefit of the network enabled tethering feature. But last week with the iTunes up-date my connected life went wrong, so very wrong.

After presenting my Today Show segment with Karl I arrived at the office and ran my iTunes up-date. Straight after I went to a meeting and fired up my tethering. It didn't work. I tried a couple of bug fixes on the fly. It still didn't work. I thought that it must be something I need to plug my laptop into an internet enabled network to fix. Did that, still didn't work. A patch? No patch available.

I quickly realised that the latest iTunes update on my iPhone caused my tethering to go belly-up and it was unlikely that without calling in tech support it would not come back. I called Apple Care and after 45 minutes they came back saying that it was most likely a network provider issue (it's not, I know it's not because it worked last week before the up-date and the only thing that changed was the up-date) and to call my reseller. I now think that after being on the phone for 45 minutes Apple has added my problem to their tech support 'possible reasons for problem' area. But that's another story.............

So what is the solution? Well, it looks like I'll have to roll back the updates and until I, or Apple, can find a solution that will fix it for me, I'll just have to keep an older version of iTunes on my mobile. Not an ideal situation, but one I can live with.

What it did leave me thinking was this. Is it better to have tethered and lost, than to not have tethered at all? Well, if I dump my reseller and move to Optus or Vodafone (who both have tethering) for an extra $20 more than my current plan then you will know the answer is a definite yes. For now though I am content wasting valuable time in my day stuffing around trying to trick, train and force my iPhone into allowing features my service package does not offer!