BlackBerry® Bridge™ – which allows you to access some of the information on your BlackBerry® smartphone (including email, contacts, calendar, memos, tasks and BlackBerry® Messenger (BBM™)) while using your BlackBerry® PlayBook™ tablet – is one of my favourite BlackBerry PlayBook tablet features. If you need a quick tutorial, learn how to set up BlackBerry Bridge right now!
If you’re new to BlackBerry Bridge, I’d like to share some tips with you so you can take advantage of some of these features.
1. Multiple email account support and folder browsing
If you have multiple email accounts integrated on your BlackBerry smartphone, you’ll be presented with a consolidated inbox of all of your email accounts when you use the BlackBerry Bridge Messages application on your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet. If you tap the “All Messages” tab that appears in the top corner of your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, you’ll be able to select a specific email account which is convenient if you receive a lot of email to multiple email addresses.
In this menu, you’ll also notice the View Folder option, which allows you to view the sent items folder of a particular email account. This is handy if you have enabled the “Hide Sent Messages” setting on your BlackBerry smartphone in the Messages options.
2. Customizing the Messages Application view
What if you wanted you’re sent or filed items to appear by default in your All Message list while using your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, instead of having to use the View Folder option? To do this, all you need to do is customize the message options that appear on your BlackBerry smartphone. The reason you need to edit these settings on your BlackBerry smartphone is because the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet displays your messages based on the settings you’ve specified on your BlackBerry smartphone. To review the options available to you, including how to hide sent and filed items, complete the following steps on your BlackBerry smartphone:
1. On your BlackBerry smartphone home screen, select “Messages”.
2. Press the menu key and select “Options”.
3. Select one of the following depending on your BlackBerry smartphone:
• BlackBerry® Device Software version 4.0 to 5.0 – Select “General Options”
• BlackBerry® 6 – Select “Message Display and Actions”
After saving these changes, re-open the Messages application on your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet and you’ll see your preferred settings take effect. Screenshots of how this screen appears on a BlackBerry 6-enabled BlackBerry smartphone are below.
3. Using the Search feature
Whenever you are using the Messages, Contacts, Memos, Tasks or Bridge Files applications on your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, you’ll notice a magnifying glass icon and a search field. When you perform a search on your BlackBerry tablet, it’s the same as doing a search while using your BlackBerry smartphone. If you want to perform a remote search of your email accounts, you’ll need to do this using your BlackBerry smartphone, as the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet does not currently support remote email search. If you aren’t familiar with the remote search option and want to learn more, check out KB15161 – How to perform a remote search for email messages.
4. Opening Attachments and File Types supported by BlackBerry Bridge Files
When using the Messages application and viewing an email that contains an attachment, you’ll be able to open it if it’s a supported file type. Current supported file types are:
- Adobe® Reader® for opening PDF Files
- Documents To Go® for opening Microsoft® Excel® (XLS, XLSX), Microsoft® Word (DOC, DOCX) and Microsoft® PowerPoint® (PPT) files
- Pictures, videos and music files (provided they are of a supported media type)
Tip: To find out more about BlackBerry PlayBook tablet-supported media types, review the Support Media Types for BlackBerry Tablets reference guide.
Something to note is that if your BlackBerry smartphone is activated on a BlackBerry® Enterprise Server, BlackBerry Bridge will not save attachments to your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet. The attachment will instead be saved to the microSD™ card on your BlackBerry smartphone. If your BlackBerry smartphone isn’t activated on a BlackBerry Enterprise Server, attachments will be saved on your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet.
When you are using BlackBerry Bridge Files, you’ll be able to access files located on your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet and the microSD card of your BlackBerry smartphone. File types supported by BlackBerry Bridge Files currently are:
- Adobe Reader for opening PDF Files
- Documents to Go for opening Microsoft Office Excel (XLS, XLSX), Microsoft Word (DOC, DOCX) and Microsoft PowerPoint (PPT) files
5. Adding images to your Contacts
If you have a lot of contacts and want to add images to their contact cards on your BlackBerry smartphone, you can use BlackBerry Messenger or Facebook® for BlackBerry smartphones to do this automatically! To learn more about how this features works, click on one of the links below, depending on which application you are using on your BlackBerry smartphone:
BlackBerry Messenger version 5.0.3
- Link a contact with a contact in the Contacts application
- Overwrite contact pictures with display pictures
Facebook for BlackBerry smartphones version 1.9
Do you have a tip for using BlackBerry Bridge? Leave a comment and let us know!