Weak on pizazz but strong where it counts, PdaNet is a cross-platform app that lets you tether your smartphone to a computer either via USB or Bluetooth DUN. When you use PdaNet, you won't have to root your phone, a major time- and stress-saver. This version works on Android phones.
There are two ways to install it. You can download it directly to your phone, connect your phone to your computer, mount the phone as a drive, and the run the executable from there. Or you can download it directly to your computer and run it. Either way, the instructions that accompany the installation are clear and concise in getting you going. Once everything's been installed, connect the phone to your laptop, run the phone app, and then complete the connection from the PdaNet system tray icon.
Our Internet connection speeds were nearly identical over USB tether as when using the phone separately. We didn't test the Bluetooth DUN speeds, but the publisher warns that they will be slower. PdaNet for Android has one limitation. After 30 days, PdaNet requires you to buy a license, otherwise it will block access to secure HTTPS Web sites such as Gmail. That's a tempting carrot, but for those who don't need access to secure sites, the free version should be more than enough. There were also occasional hiccups when waking the laptop from hibernating, but otherwise there were no connection problems. To get around those apparent connection loss situations, disconnect and then re-establish the tether. PdaNet is light on system resources, and an easy-to-use choice for those who want the benefits of tethering without the risks involved in rooting.