The latest version of Google Play Services, specifically version 10.2, brings a new feature that Google is working towards rolling out to all devices. The feature is called Instant Tethering and it will act as a way for users to stay online even when their mobile devices won’t have access to the internet.
The way Instant Tethering works is that when no connection is detected, the Android device will look to share data from other Android powered smart devices. The two devices should be linked through a Google account, and Bluetooth should be used to more easily connect the two handsets. When talking about the device that requires using another’s internet data and the one that will be giving some of its data to the former, you can count in any combination of smartphone and tablet. This means that you aren’t restricted at using smartphones for this feature which is really nice.
While a mass rollout is the end goal, only a handful of devices will initially receive the feature. These devices are of course, the ones that are famed for being Google’s first in line. The newest additions to this category, namely Google Pixel and Google Pixel XL will be the firsts to get Instant Tethering, while the previous Nexus line devices will follow suit. It looks like the devices that are a bit overshadowed from each line, namely Nexus 9 and Pixel C will be getting the features.
It has not been announced yet when people can expect a full blown release of the feature, but it can only be a matter of time before every device comes with Instant Tethering. This feature can prove extremely useful if you are juggling multiple devices and not all of them are connected to the internet when you most need them to be.