bluetooth

Bluetooth web surfing with a Blackberry Storm?

Question: I'm considering the new, WiFi challenged, Blackberry Storm. Being that 3G is somewhat weak at home, I would like to know if it is possible to pair the bluetooth equipped Storm to my Internet connected PC and then surf the Web from the Storm via the PCs high speed connection?

Answer: (this question is waiting for an answer. If you know the answer, please feel free to use the comment form below and be sure to leave your name and a link to your website, so I can give you credit for your answer)

How to Pair a Bluetooth Device with Your Windows PC

Question: How do I connect my Bluetooth wireless phone with my laptop, so that I can send and receive files?

Answer: Connecting your Bluetooth wireless phone with your laptop is called pairing, and I'll use a Blackberry Curve to show you how it works. You can do this with any bluetooth-enabled phone, although the menu options might be slightly different depending on the type of phone you have.

Make sure that Bluetooth is enabled on your phone. For Blackberry phones, that means selecting the "Set Up Bluetooth" application from the main screen, and then selecting "Enable Bluetooth" after clicking the menu button.

I'm assuming your laptop comes with a built-in Bluetooth adapter (or you can get a bluetooth adapter like this one, that plugs into one of your USB ports).

Next, set up your computer to allow Bluetooth connections. If your computer comes with Bluetooth, then you'll see a Bluetooth icon in your Control Panel (Start button -> Control Panel from Vista):

Double-click the Bluetooth icon and you'll see a Bluetooth Devices dialog. Click the Options tab and make sure the options to "Allow Bluetooth devices to find this computer" and "Allow Bluetooth devices to connect to this computer" are both checked.

How to transfer pictures from a Blackberry phone to your computer

Question: I have some pictures I took with my Blackberry Curve that I'd like to copy over to my computer. How do I do this?

Answer: With Blackberry phones you have a few choices for copying photos to your computer, or for copying them from your computer to your Blackberry. These instructions also work for copying music files and videos.

1. Transfer via email.

This is the easiest way, and doesn't cost any money because data transfer is included in the Blackberry service. With the picture open on your Blackberry (Media -- Pictures -- My Pictures -- and then find your picture), press the menu button and select "Send As Email" (you have to scroll down a ways on the menu to find this option).

The email will show up on your computer with a file attachment containing your picture in jpg format, which is compatible with any photo imaging programs and will even open in Microsoft Paint (although I recommend a program like Paint.NET which is free and awesome).

The only drawback with the email approach is that you can only send one picture at a time, which gets a little tedious if you have several pictures you'd like to copy to your computer. In that case I recommend the USB data cable approach described below.

2. Transfer using bluetooth.

Open the Media application on your Blackberry to view your pictures, and open the picture that you want to transfer. Press the menu button and select "Send Using Bluetooth" (you'll have to scroll down the menu towards the bottom to see this option).

You have to have Bluetooth enabled on your BB, otherwise you'll see a warning message:

Turn Your Blackberry Curve into a Wireless MP3 Player

Most Blackberry devices comes with a standard 3.5-inch headphone jack that let you listen to music from the built-in mp3 player.

But you can also listen to music without plugging in a cord, by using a wireless bluetooth headset.

Here's a step-by-step guide that will show you how to set up bluetooth on your Blackberry so you can listen to music using a wireless bluetooth headset.

1. Enable Bluetooth on your Blackberry

Click the "Set Up Bluetooth" icon on the main Blackberry screen, and it will automatically enable Bluetooth and start searching for Bluetooth devices that are within range (normally about 30 feet).

Make sure your Bluetooth headphones are in pairing mode so that they can be discovered by your Blackberry. For the Jabra BT620s Bluetooth headphones shown below, this means turning them off and then pressing and holding both sides of the headphones at the same time for about 5 seconds until both sides show solid blue lights.

Blackberry Enabling Bluetooth

2. Pair your Blackberry with your Bluetooth Headphones

Once your Blackberry discovers the Bluetooth headphones, it will prompt you to select the device (the headphones). You may already have other Bluetooth devices that you've paired your Blackberry with, such as your computer if it has Bluetooth enabled, but you'll still need to pair with the headphones before you can use them.

Pairing with a Bluetooth device requires establishing a Bluetooth connection that's identified by a unique passkey. You'll always use four zeros "0000" for the Jabra headphones numeric passkey.

How to transfer photos and ring tones to your cell phone

By far the most frequently asked question I receive at RickySays.com is "How do I transfer a photo from my computer to my cell phone? (or vice versa)"

Cell phone manufacturers often don't ship software with their phones that would do this for free, because they'd rather make money on transfer fees. Windows doesn't provide much help either.

For example, I bought a Motorola Razr v3 phone and it only came with a user's manual and a charger; there was no software for transferring any files to my computer, and nothing built into Windows XP or Vista that would recognize my phone.

Fortunately there are a few ways to transfer photos or ring tones from your PC to your cell phone (or from your cell phone to your PC):

  1. Email
  2. USB Data Cable
  3. Bluetooth

I'll discuss each of these approaches in this article.

Transfer using email

You can send your phone an email with the photo or ring tone as a file attachment. For AT&T/Cingular customers the email address is your_number@cingularme.com. For example, if your cell phone number is 691-548-1294 then you'd send an email to 6915481294@cingularme.com and it would arrive as a text message on your cell phone.

Once you receive the text message on your cell phone, you can view the photo or ring tone and save it as your wallpaper or in your phone's audio library. On the Motorola Razr, when you view the picture you can select the "Set as Wallpaper" menu option.

The downside to this approach is that it costs money to read text messages - as much as a penny a kilobyte. This might not sound like much, but when you consider that most pictures are about 75kb that adds up to about 75 cents for each photo that you send.

Of course cell phone companies want you to transfer photos from your cell phone using email, because that way they can charge your for the data transfer.

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