I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I had received a replacement BlackBerry (9100) for my much loved Pink Pearl 8100 and with the BlackBerry Desktop Manager the swapping out of BlackBerry smartphones is very easy. You basically have the opportunity to port over all the settings, data and applications (that are supported) from one smartphone to the other. If you are connected to an enterprise account you can activate the BlackBerry immediately, if you are on a BIS account, you’ll need to swap over the PIN information. Which, depending on your carrier, you can either do directly on your BlackBerry or through the BIS website provided by your carrier.
In this post, I wanted to reach out to the BlackBerry newcomer and list out a few key tasks they could do to quickly make a BlackBerry their BlackBerry. I generally break the tasks down into 2 groups, Settings and Look & Feel. Settings cover the owner field, time zone, keyboard, language, etc. Look & Feel involve changing icon placement, installing applications, setting home images, etc.
Auto On/Off: Set a schedule for your BlackBerry to be automatically turned off and on. Remember to consider any alarms you plan on setting – you don’t want the times to clash.
Date/Time: Although the time and date should be set, it’s always good to double check and also set up the time format of your preference.
Language and Text Input: In most instances your BlackBerry OS will automatically comes pre-loaded with a number of languages (the number of languages depends on your location and carrier). During the initial Wizard setup of your BlackBerry you’ll get an opportunity to remove any unwanted languages. If you keep multiple languages on your BlackBerry, like I do, you’ll find the ability to set up Quick Selection for languages extremely useful.
Owner: Very important setting. Remember to not only include your name but contact information that’s different from your BlackBerry (I know obvious, but worth stating again).
Password: I’d always recommend setting a password, especially if you plan on keeping contact information, information in your memos and even installing applications. And when setting a password remember to also set a Security Timeout – doesn’t help to have a password if it doesn’t kick in, in a timely manner.
Screen/Keyboard: Take the time to set a font and font size that you find easy to read and comfortable for constant use. In this section you’ll also find the options for the Backlight Brightness, Timeout and LED Coverage Indicator – all of which have a direct impact (eventually) on your battery life. And finally, the Convenience Key settings which are really the very first thing I tend to set up. My right key is set for the Application List while my left key is set for Password Lock.
Sounds and Ring Tones: Although could be considered part of the Look & Feel of your BlackBerry, I would say it’s an important setting that will help you identify your BlackBerry in a sea of smartphone notifications.
Now once the Settings are taken care of, which really shouldn’t take more than 15 or so minutes, I like to spend equal time really personalizing my BlackBerry. In Part 2, I’ll cover some of the things I like to do to really make a BlackBerry, my BlackBerry.