Ethernet cable inside of an adapter
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To connect your iPhone to Ethernet, you'll need an adapter with a Lightning connector and an Ethernet cable. Plug the Lightning connector into your iPhone and connect a network cable to the adapter. The Ethernet connection will be prioritized over wireless connections.

Very few circumstances would require you to connect your iPhone to Ethernet. However, connecting to Ethernet might be best if Wi-Fi isn’t available or if it’s unstable. All you need to make the connection is the correct adapter and a spare network cable. We’ll show you how.

How to Connect Your iPhone to Ethernet

Connecting your iPhone to Ethernet requires an adapter that fits into your iPhone’s Lightning port. This adapter then gives you access to the missing Ethernet input.

Apple sells a pricey official Belkin Ethernet + Power Adapter in-store and online, which should do the trick. Plus, it’s compatible with the iPhone SE (first generation) or iPhone 7 and above.

Belkin Lightning to Ethernet Adapter

Belkin Ethernet + Power Adapter with Lightning Connector

Connect your iPhone to a wired Ethernet network with Belkin’s Made for iPhone adapter, complete with Power over Ethernet (PoE) support and a Lightning port for powering your iPhone.

The Belkin adapter supports Power over Ethernet (PoE), which means you can charge your iPhone without using the included Lightning port. According to Belkin, the speed tops out at just 180 Mbps.

You can save some money (around half of the price) by opting for the Apple-certified Anker Lightning to Ethernet Adapter instead. While there’s no mention of PoE, the Anker model quotes a maximum theoretical speed of 480 Mbps and features a Lightning port for charging your iPhone.

Anker Lightning to Ethernet Adapter

Anker Lightning to Ethernet and Charging Adapter, [MFi Certified] 2-in-1 Adapter with Lightning Connector for iPhone 12/11 / X/XS/XR/iPad 8

Drop PoE support and increase your theoretical speed to 480Mbps with the Anker Lightning to Ethernet adapter.

Other cost-efficient options do exist, like the Bluechok Lightning to Ethernet Adapter. However, this option doesn’t feature charging capabilities.

Bluechock Lightning to Ethernet Adapter

Lightning to Ethernet RJ45 Adapter for iPhone/iPad [Apple MFi Certified], Plug and Play iPhone High Speed Ethernet Adapter Support 10/100 Mbps Network (Black)

If you want simple Ethernet connectivity capabilities, this budget-friendly adapter with a max speed of 100Mbps might work for you.

Don’t forget that connecting to an Ethernet port will also require an Ethernet cable, which isn’t included with any of these adapters.

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Once you’ve got your Lightning to Ethernet adapter, plug the Lightning connector into your iPhone and connect a network cable to the adapter. The network connection should “just work” and take priority over any wireless connections.

If your adapter has a Lightning input, you can connect your iPhone’s charging cable to power it while you’re connected to a wired network. This is optional and only for the iPhone’s benefit since the adapter should get any power it needs directly from the iPhone.

If you have PoE set up correctly and your adapter supports it, your iPhone should charge as usual without needing an adapter.

Why Would You Connect Ethernet to an iPhone?

Sometimes, wireless networks are unreliable, congested, or simply not available. In areas of congestion, even the 4G or 5G network can be slow and challenging to work with, leaving you without internet. This is where a wired connection comes in handy.

Events like conventions are notorious for overcrowded network connections and interference, though most offer a wired alternative. Some locations, such as military or defense institutions, don’t use wireless at all, making a wired connection a requirement.

Anker Ethernet to Lightning adapter
Anker

You can do virtually everything from your iPhone, such as shopping, paying bills, or getting in touch with those important to you. If all you have on you is an iPhone, and the only available connection is wired, hooking your iPhone up to Ethernet might not seem so silly.

Grab a Quality Charger Too

Most iPhone models now support fast charging, but to take advantage of this, you’ll need to invest in a charger that supports the required wattage.

Check out our top iPhone charger picks to find something to fit your budget. And be sure you don’t miss our recommendations for Lightning cables.

Profile Photo for Tim Brookes Tim Brookes
Tim Brookes is a technology writer with more than a decade of experience. He's invested in the Apple ecosystem, with experience covering Macs, iPhones, and iPads for publications like Zapier and MakeUseOf.
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