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How to pair Bluetooth devices to your smartphone

Wireless connectivity has become more prevalent than ever in the mobile world. There’s an increasing number of ways to connect your various devices and accessories using all manner of cordless means, such as; Infrared, WiFi, DLNA, AirPlay and one of the most well known technologies, Bluetooth.

Mobile phones and accessories embraced the technology which allows a user or device to send and receive data using radio waves native to Bluetooth technology. Typically mobile users choose to pair a headset to their phone for uses such as hands free talking whilst driving or enabling the user to speak in an area without signal provided their phone is in a location with signal and within range of the Bluetooth headset.

Bluetooth accessories

Typically, consumer Bluetooth technologies have a range of around 10 meters, but all manner of environmental factors can enhance or cripple such performance even within this 10 metre radius.

There are different methods of connecting or ‘pairing’ a device to a smartphone using Bluetooth, but we’re covering the most typical instances in the case of each operating system.

Android OS

Find the ‘Settings’ application in your device’s app drawer and tap the option marked ‘Bluetooth’. Switch Bluetooth on using the checkbox or toggle and where possible make sure the device is set to be ‘visible to all Bluetooth devices nearby’ (or words to that effect).

Whilst your device is visible over Bluetooth, refer to your user manual to make sure your peripheral, whether it be headset, speakers or other Bluetooth capable device is set to ‘Pairing Mode’, this will make your Bluetooth device visible to your smartphone or tablet.

Once the device appears on the screen, press it to indicate you wish to connect to the desired Bluetooth device. Depending on the age of the product you’re trying to connect, you may be asked to enter a passkey (typically 1234 or 0000), compare two identical numbers on each device, enter and confirm a password from one device to the other or simply tap one device to the other if they both support NFC. How the pairing process works depends on the accessory you’re trying to connect.

iOS

Find the ‘Settings’ application on your homescreen, head to the ‘General’ tab and tap the option marked ‘Bluetooth,’ then simply Switch Bluetooth on using the On/Off toggle.

Whilst your iOS device’s Bluetooth is on, refer to your user manual to make sure your peripheral, whether it be headset, speakers or other Bluetooth capable device is set to ‘Pairing Mode’, this will make your Bluetooth device visible to your iPhone or iPad.

Once the device appears on the screen, press it to indicate you wish to connect to the desired Bluetooth device. Depending on the age of the product you’re trying to connect, you may be asked to enter a passkey (typically 1234 or 0000), compare two identical numbers on each device, enter and confirm a password from one device to the other or simply tap one device to the other if they both support NFC. How the pairing process works depends on the accessory you’re trying to connect. iOS devices are unable to connect to other phones or tablets over Bluetooth which aren’t iOS devices.

Windows Phone

Find the ‘Settings’ application in your device’s apps list and tap the option marked ‘Bluetooth’. Switch Bluetooth on using the On/Off toggle.

Refer to your user manual to make sure your peripheral is set to ‘Pairing Mode’, this will make your Bluetooth device visible to your smartphone or tablet.

Once the device appears on the screen, press it to indicate you wish to connect to the desired Bluetooth device. Depending on the age of the product you’re trying to connect, you may be asked to enter a passkey (typically 1234 or 0000), compare two identical numbers on each device, enter and confirm a password from one device to the other or simply tap one device to the other if they both support NFC. How the pairing process works depends on the accessory you’re trying to connect.

BlackBerry OS

Find the ‘Options’ application head to ‘Networks and Connections’ and tap the option marked ‘Bluetooth Connections.’ Switch Bluetooth on using the drop down menu and make your BlackBerry discoverable for a limited time or either ‘2 minutes’ or permanently by selecting ‘Yes’.

Whilst your device is visible over Bluetooth, refer to your user manual to make sure your peripheral, whether it be headset, speakers or other Bluetooth capable device is set to ‘Pairing Mode’, this will make your Bluetooth device visible to your smartphone or tablet.

Select ‘Add New Device’ and choose the ‘Search’ option. Once the device appears on the screen, press it to indicate you wish to connect to the desired Bluetooth device. Depending on the age of the product you’re trying to connect, you may be asked to enter a passkey (typically 1234 or 0000), compare two identical numbers on each device, enter and confirm a password from one device to the other or simply tap one device to the other if they both support NFC. How the pairing process works depends on the accessory you’re trying to connect.

Disconnecting

In each of these instances, simply switch Bluetooth off the accessory to disconnect it from your device and switch Bluetooth off on your smartphone or tablet to conserve battery.

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