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BlackBerry Shortcut Keys: More Tips and Tricks

written by: shopperholic2•edited by: Simon Hill•updated: 7/5/2011

BlackBerry users may be aware of the basic shortcut keys on their devices but unaware of the more intermediate techniques that can stave off frustration and save time. This article focuses on intermediate BlackBerry shortcuts.

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    Listed below are a few advanced BlackBerry shortcut key tips and tricks. If you are looking for some more basic shortcuts, then checkout these 10 shortcut keys for calling functions.

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    Tip# 1 - Turn The Mute Button Into a Standby Key

    I personally don't use a holster or case for my phones, I tend to slip them into my pocket and forget about them until needed, aside from scratching my devices up beyond belief (just another excuse to buy a new phone) it use to cause me to "butt dial" meaning I would accidentally sit down and dial a number or the phone would jostle around and push random keys.

    I say I use to do that because I learned a cool solution a little while back, I learned how to turn my devices mute key, which I never used anyways, into a "standby key" that locks my device so keys can be used until I take it out of locked mode.

    This is another simple process:

    • Just hold down your "Mute" key for 3 seconds and it will auto lock, you'll know its locked because it will go into standby
    • You can then place your device wherever you please.

    However, if you lose your BlackBerry smartphone your not protected as this option does not lock your BlackBerry but rather places it in a standby mode, it get out of standby you only need to tap the mute button.

    I know what you're thinking, if a tap of the mute button unlocked the standby how effective is it? To answer that question, to date (about a year) I have only accidentally taken my device out of standby once, and that occurred when I dropped my BlackBerry 8800 on a hard surface and it hit the mute button somehow.

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    Tip# 2: One Button Default Program Launching

    To use quick launch you'll need to fire disable your "Dial From Home Screen" function, you can do this by clicking on your Phone Icon from the home screen or by pressing the green phone button. Next press the Menu key, choose Options, then General Options. Finally change the "Dial From Home Screen" field from "Yes" to "No", hit the Escape key and your ready to go.

    Please Note: You will now need to hit the Phone icon or press the Green Call key to make a call.

    In place of the calling feature you can press the following keys to access the following apps:

    • WAP Browser -- W
    • Alarm -- R
    • Tasks -- T
    • Calculator -- U
    • Options -- O
    • Address Book -- A
    • Search -- S
    • Notes -- D
    • Profiles -- F
    • Help -- H
    • Lock keypad -- K
    • Calendar -- L
    • Messages -- M
    • Browser -- B
    • BlackBerry Messenger -- N
    • Saved messages -- V
    • Compose -- C

    It's a simple process and with the added quick launch functions I don't mind losing the dial from homescreen function, that of course will be a personal choice you have to make on your own.

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    Tip# 3: Sift Through Email Threads Quickly

    Picture this scenario, you just received the fifth message today from a business partner regarding a specific email thread, you need to look back over the last 4 emails to make sure you now have all of the information you need. On the one hand you can open up your email each time to find the next corresponding email, but that could take plenty of time, especially if like me you receive over 100 emails a day, or you could simply use an email sifting feature.

    Email Sifting Feature:

    Simply open up one of the emails in the thread and then press the "J" key to jump to the next thread and the "K" key to jump back to past messages.

    Important Note: The J and K shortcuts may not find the next or previous emails in the thread if the subject line has changed since that's what causes the shortcut to work.

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    Those are just 3 quick tips that can add ease of use and protection to your Blackberry devices. As a quick side note these shortcuts were all tested on BlackBerry 8800 and above devices and may not work on older models.