One of the little talked about features of the BlackBerry PlayBook is the ability to connect by Bluetooth to share your phone’s internet connection. Yes; you heard that right – any phone with the right Bluetooth profile. My HTC One X seems to have gone missing in action en-route Lagos. Okay, not exactly. But it has left HTC Repairs in the UK, was passed on to the courier about a week ago, is not yet here, but no-one seems to know exactly where it is.
Anyway, partly as a result of this delay, I have been been without a phone in the last few days (Oh, the bliss!). I got my hands on an old sweetheart, the Sony Ericsson W595 Walkman phone. How many of you remember the Walkman range from SE? Anyway, the W595 has got Bluetooth, a 3.2 MP camera, stereo speakers, and HSDPA 3.6 Mbps. This particular unit is pink. Yup; a very sweet, girlish pink. You see, I purchased it for my wife as a birthday present years ago. I get to borrow it for use just for today, as I have to be out and about and cannot risk a flat tyre, robbers, kidnappers, or – God forbid LASTMA – without a phone on me.
Anyway, I needed to get online this morning, and just thought, Why not try out this Bluetooth tethering thing? There’s a PlayBook, and there’s the pink phone with Bluetooth. In my head, the light bulb was on at full brightness.
So, I set out to pairing the two devices – one a state-of-the-art modern tablet and the other a four-year old feature phone. Pairing was a cinch, and was done in minutes. I selected “Internet Tethering” in the Settings menu of the PlayBook, selected the W595, got a warning that my network operator might bill me for using tethering, and pronto – connected. Okay, a connection was one thing, but would it actually work?
Like a boss!
It worked like a charm. Web browsing, emails, tweeting, all work. It is such a simple feature, yet I do not know of any other tablet that has Bluetooth tethering implemented. On the PlayBook, you can connect to the internet via three different channels:
- Bluetooth tethering
- Bridge via a BlackBerry smartphone
That’s some versatility there. I keep saying it: the PlayBook is one heck of a tablet, and with the new OS v2.1 that I updated it with yesterday, it has gotten even better. But more on that later.
Who would have thought that a feature phone that was released in 2008 would pack so much functionality in 2012? But then you know what I keep saying, “It isn’t about mobile technology but what you do with it”. I know more modern phones, even smartphones, that cannot do Bluetooth tethering for their life.
In the meantime, here I am carrying a pink slider phone around today. It feels odd, mehn! I suspect that the ladies will love it on me, so if any of y’all ladies see a dude talking on a pink phone today (just today!), holla at your boy. Come to think of it, don’t I have a pink shirt somewhere in my wardrobe? Lemme go see….