Ten Things you need to know about your BlackBerry

Since I started this blog, I’ve met a lot of other members of Team BlackBerry.  One of the things that constantly astounds me is how few people regularly back up their BlackBerry handheld devices.  I learned the hard way about backing up my BlackBerry – earlier this year I managed to brick my Bold 9900 (totally a user error on that one).  I hadn’t backed up in over a month, and while I have a lot of technologically inclined friends, I still lost a few things.  I now back up my BlackBerry at least once a week and have BlackBerry Protect doing a daily back up.  Some of these tips seem really simple, and they are very easy to implement but they will make life easier as a BlackBerry owner.

  1. Plug it in!  Plug your BlackBerry into your computer to create a backup and to move files and folders from your computer to your device and vice versa.  You may never need the backup, but if you do, you’ll be happy you did it.
  2. Use folders so that your home screen isn’t cluttered with apps.  Keep only the things you access daily on your home screen.
  3. Update your BlackBerry – Not just the Operating System (OS) updates but also applications.  Having the latest version of an application means it’s more likely to work the way it was intended and integrate with other applications such as Blackberry Messenger (BBM) more smoothly.
  4. Turn off WiFi coverage when you’re out of range for it.  Unless you’re searching for hotspots, you don’t actually need your wi-fi on when you’re out and about.  When wi-fi is turned on, it will continuously look for networks to connect to which will drain your battery.
  5. Press and hold the BlackBerry button to see what applications are running in the background and close any that you aren’t actually using in order to free up memory and save your battery. The BlackBerry Button is the one that looks like this:
    BlackBerry, BlackBerry Bold, BlackBerry PlayBook, Tips, Tricks.
  6. Blackberry Shortcuts.  These are awesome.  Tired of typing your number in a Facebook message, direct message on twitter or on BBM?  Type mynumber and poof – there it is.  Mypindoes the same thing but with your PIN.  If you need to insert the date into a post, type ld (long date) and the date will show up (ie: Tue, Oct 15, 2012). To get the long version of the current time, type lt to show (12:54:45 AM).
  7. Going to a movie and need to put your phone on vibrate quickly?  Press and hold the “Q” key and it will automatically switch your phone to vibrate.  To switch back, press and hold the “Q” key again.
  8. Set up auto on/off times.  You can do this by going to Settings –> Device –> Auto On /Off  and set what time you want your BlackBerry to automatically turn off at night and when you want it to turn on in the morning.  You can set different times for weekdays versus weekends too.
  9. Learn how to do a soft reset of your device.  You know the handy Ctrl + Alt + Del command you use to reboot your computer?  You can do the same thing on your BlackBerry by pressing Alt + Shift + Del at the same time. (If you have a full touch screen you’ll have to do the battery pull instead)
  10. Get a shell or a holster and a screen protector.  I love my holster – it means that I can always have my BlackBerry on me.  If you dislike holsters (and I know some of you do), get a shell casing so the back doesn’t get all scratched up in your purse or briefcase.  The cases make the BlackBerry easy to grip too.  A screen protector is a must if you have a touchscreen and it’s great even if you don’t.  When applied correctly, they don’t interfere with the touchscreen sensitivity but help protect your screen against nicks and scratches.  Of course you can always get a really cool sticker for your BlackBerry like I have for mine.  Have I mentioned how much I love my TARDIS-Berry?

Well, that’s it.  Those are my top 10 BlackBerry tips.  Do you have a tip or a trick for other members of Team BlackBerry?

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About koalateagirl

I am a BlackBerry addict and proud supporter of the CFL. I am also a Girl Guide leader, tutor and advocate for special needs kids,and honourary aunt to a gaggle of kids. I write and edit for a living. I love gadgets and technology and am a proud member of the BlackBerry Elite Social Media fans program and the YMC Community.
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3 Responses to Ten Things you need to know about your BlackBerry

  1. Pingback: She’s Connected and my BlackBerry | Adventures with my Blackberry

  2. Loretta says:

    I type super fast on my BlackBerry because I have hundreds of word substitutions programmed into it. (Find these at: Options, Typing & Language, Word Substitutions. To make a new one, press Menu and select New). The substitution will be done when you hit the space key after your abbreviation.

    For example, I send out birthday greetings every morning. All I have to do is type hb and my BlackBerry types out “happy birthday”. Then I type sd (initials for “Special Day”) and it types out the following phrase: “I hope your special day is terrific and that your year ahead is filled with many blessings!” I type 5 letters and my BlackBerry gives me all that!

    I have word substitutions for everything I do repeatedly. Another example would be that I have various addresses programmed, all with the letter “a” at the end. For example,if my address were 1234 Washington Street, MyTown, ST 54321, I’d program that in with the abbreviation wsa (for Washington Street Address) so all I’d type was 3 letters and my BlackBerry would type the whole address.

    I also have word substitutions set for many common words in addition to the ones that come preseton the BlackBerry. For example, my BlackBerry types the word “through” when I type “thru” and “throughout” when I type “thruo”. It types “because” when I type “bcs”, “become” when I type “bcm”, “by the way” when I type “btw”, etc.

    To help me remember my “system”, I add a “g” to my shortcut when I want an “ing” ending, an “s” for a plural ending, a “d” for an “ed” ending, and “n” for a “tion” ending. Examples would be “app” for “appreciate”, “apps” for “appreciates”, “appg” for “appreciating, “appd” for “appreciated”, and “appn” for “appreciation”. I use this “endings” system consistently for all words that I commonly use in their various forms.

    Lastly, because I have a spouse and children, I have some very practical abbreviations programmed to help me keep things in order. Some examples are: “Ayuag” gives me “Are you up & going?”, “pcm” gives me “please call me”, “cuw” gives me “please carry up your wash”, “csm” gives me “please come see me right away”, “gt” gives me “please fill the gas tank”… You get the idea.

    The only thing to watch for is to avoid setting your shortcut to go off on a common group of letters. For example, you could program “to” to type “trash out”, but you probably don’t want it to type “trash out” every time you type the word “to”, so I’d instead I’d use “tto” for “take trash out” or something like that.

    People are consistenly amazed by how fast I type on my BlackBerry (bby) and by how able I am to send longer things from a personal device. You’d be surprised at how quickly I was able to type this reply!

    I rarely fire up my desktop – maybe once a week or less. I do most of my work on my BlackBerry because “real” typing now seems to be a frustrarignly long and arduous process.

    By the way, if you trigger a substitution you don’t want, backspace back to it and when you hit the space bar again, it’ll go on without substituting the word – try it!

    I love my BlackBerry! 🙂

  3. Miko says:

    I love it guys 🙂

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