Getting Started with Documents To Go in BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0

HOW-TO / 02.29.12 / tywill1


Leaving the laptop at home is something I’ve been doing a lot recently thanks to Documents To Go®, which is included with the BlackBerry® PlayBook™ tablet. This powerful mobile office software suite lets you view and edit Microsoft® Word® and Microsoft® Excel® files, and now with the new BlackBerry® PlayBook OS 2.0 update, Microsoft® PowerPoint® files as well. In addition, with the new BlackBerry® Bridge™ 2.0, you can now take advantage of “Presenter Mode”, which allows you move back and forth within a presentation while presenting on a HDMI display.

Here’s some useful information you should know about Documents To Go to help get you started!

What’s new in Documents To Go in BlackBerry PlayBook OS 2.0

The first thing you’ll notice in the update of Documents To Go is that instead of separate icons for Word To Go®, Sheet To Go® and Slideshow To Go®, you now have a single icon for Documents To Go on your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet Home screen. Tap this icon and you’ll be able to create a new document or spreadsheet, or browse for files stored on the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet (or on your BlackBerry® smartphone if you are using the BlackBerry Bridge app). Support for BlackBerry® Balance™ technology allows you to save your documents in a separate and secure partition on your BlackBerry PlayBook.

Some of the other enhancements include:

  • Improved viewing of Microsoft PowerPoint 2007/2010 charts
  • View & update embedded charts and chart sheets within Microsoft PowerPoint 2007/2010 files
  • New Formula Wizard with over 110 supported functions
  • Copy, paste and resize cells, rows and columns
  • Insert & edit bulleted & numbered lists in Word documents
  • Support for Bluetooth® keyboards & shortcuts
  • Open password-protected Microsoft Office 2010 files
  • Find & Replace

BlackBerry Bridge 2.0 & Documents To Go

As mentioned earlier, you can use your BlackBerry smartphone as a wireless mouse and keyboard using the Remote Control feature, as well as present a slideshow using Presenter Mode. Provided you have set up BlackBerry Bridge on your BlackBerry smartphone and BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, complete the steps below to try out each of these new modes. If you need help getting BlackBerry Bridge set up, check my post on how to setup BlackBerry Bridge.

Remote Control

    1. On your Blackberry smartphone, open BlackBerry Bridge
    2. Enable Bluetooth if required, then select the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet you’d like to control (with BlackBerry Bridge you can connect to multiple BlackBerry tablets)
    3. Press the Menu key and select “Remote Control”.
    4. After enabling the remote control, you can switch between cursor mode and keyboard mode to interact with your BlackBerry tablet. If your BlackBerry smartphone has a physical keyboard, simply start typing, or click the keyboard icon on a touchscreen-only model. To return to cursor mode, press the escape key. To learn more about the BlackBerry Bridge Remote Control feature, make sure you check out the BlackBerry PlayBook Tablet User Guide which can be found at

Presenter Mode

To use Presenter Mode, complete the steps above to enable Remote Control. Then, while viewing a presentation using Slideshow To Go, press the Menu key and select “Presenter Mode”. You can then move left and right between slides using your BlackBerry smartphone. You also have the option of using the volume keys on the BlackBerry smartphone to move back and forth between slides while in “Presenter Mode”.

Copying files to and from a BlackBerry PlayBook tablet

Some good information to know when using Documents To Go is how to copy files between your computer and the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet. In addition to using email attachments, you can also use Wi-Fi® Sharing, USB Sharing or 3rd party apps available on the BlackBerry App World™ storefront.

Bluetooth Keyboard Shortcuts

If you use a Bluetooth keyboard with the BlackBerry PlayBook tablet, you can use the following shortcuts in Documents To Go:


      • Undo an action: Press CTRL+X
      • Repeat an action: Press CTRL+Y
      • Extend a selection by one cell: Press and hold SHIFT followed by using the arrow keys to select a cell
      • Clear the content of selected cells: Press DELETE
      • Start a presentation from the first slide: Press F5
      • End a presentation: Press ESC

Typing Shortcuts

      • Bold text: Press CTRL+B
      • Italicize text: Press CTRL+I
      • Underline text: Press CTRL+U
      • Cut: Press CTRL+X
      • Copy: Press CTRL+C
      • Paste: Press CTRL+V
      • Select text: Press and hold SHIFT followed by using the arrow keys to select text
      • Select an entire document: Press CTRL+

Navigating Shortcuts

      • Go to the top of a document or spreadsheet: Press CTRL+HOME
      • Go to the bottom of a document: Press CTRL+END
      • Move one word to the left: Press CTRL+LEFT ARROW
      • Move one word to the right: Press CTRL+RIGHT ARROW
      • Move up one paragraph: Press CTRL+UP ARROW
      • Move down one paragraph: Press CTRL+DOWN ARROW
      • Go to the beginning of a row in a spreadsheet: Press HOME

Need to reference these in the future? Just open up the Help app and select Documents To Go followed by selecting Shortcuts: Documents To Go to view the table above.

Got a question about using Documents To Go or managing files on your BlackBerry PlayBook tablet? Leave a comment and let me know!

About tywill1