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Getting Connected While on the Road Using Infrared or Bluetooth
Pages: 1, 2

Using Bluetooth

If you have a Bluetooth-equipped mobile phone, such as the Sony Ericsson T68i, you can use it as a modem to connect to the Internet. Best of all, with Bluetooth you can simply leave the phone in your pocket or briefcase and still be able to connect to the Internet (as long as the phone is powered up and your briefcase is within range). In this section I will show you how to connect to the Internet using the Sony Ericsson T68i.

The easiest way to add Bluetooth capability to your computer is to insert a USB Bluetooth adapter to your USB port. Today, USB Bluetooth adapters come in all shapes and sizes. For as little as $40 you can get a Class 2/3 Bluetooth adapter. For slightly more, you can get a Class 1 adapter that extends the effective communication radius. Figure 8 shows the Billionton USB Bluetooth adapter connected to my notebook computer.

Figure 8
Figure 8. The Billionton USB Bluetooth adapter connected to my notebook.

Connecting your Computer to the Mobile Phone Through Bluetooth

First, turn on the Sony Ericsson T68i's Bluetooth radio (press the joystick button, select Connect-->Bluetooth-->Options-->Operation Mode-->On) and make the phone discoverable (press the joystick button, select Connect-->Bluetooth-->Discoverable).

In Windows XP, go to My Bluetooth Places (I presume you have set up Bluetooth support on your Windows computer using the drivers provided with the Bluetooth adapter) and select View Devices in range. (You may also click the Bluetooth menu and select Search for devices or open Entire Bluetooth Neighborhood and press F5). After the discovery process, you should be able to see the Sony Ericsson T68i icon. Right-click on the icon and select Discover Available Services (see Figure 9).

Figure 9
Figure 9. Discovering the services offered by the T68i.

The Sony Ericsson T68i supports the services shown in Figure 10.

Figure 10
Figure 10. Services offered by the T68i.

To connect to the T68i, right-click on the Dial-Up Networking on T68 service and select Connect Dial-up Networking (see Figure 11).

Figure 11
Figure 11. Using the Dial-up Networking service on the T68i.

The phone will ask you whether you want to accept the connection request, decline it, or "add to paired." This last step pairs the phone and the PC and performs the connection request. Pairing the phone and the computer will ensure that the connection can be established whenever you need it (even though you have not used the connection for some time). If your phone is not paired, you need to make it discoverable every time you need to use the connection. See the section To Pair or Not to Pair for more details.

You will be prompted to supply a PIN code to pair up the phone with your computer (see Figure 12). You need to enter the same PIN code on your phone.

Figure 12
Figure 12. Supplying a PIN code for pairing.

Next, a dialog box will be displayed, prompting you to enter the user name, password, and the phone number to dial (see Figure 13). You can get all this information from your ISP.

Note: Some ISPs do not require a username or password, just the dialing sequence for the T68i. For example, AT&T Wireless' dial string is *99*CID#, where CID is your connection ID (typically 1, as in *99*1#). This uses the connections defined on your phone (#1 is usually configured by AT&T for your GPRS data connection).

Figure 13
Figure 13. Dialing using the T68i.

Click on the Dial button to complete the connection process (see Figure 13).

Related Reading

Windows XP Unwired
A Guide for Home, Office, and the Road
By Wei-Meng Lee

To Pair or Not to Pair

In Bluetooth, you have the option to "pair" two devices. When you pair with a Bluetooth device, this device will be "remembered." The next time you need to use the device, you won't have to search for the device again.

When pairing with a device, the device requesting the pairing will need to supply a PIN code to establish the link. The other device would need the same PIN to complete the pairing process.

You can still use a Bluetooth device without pairing, but you will need to search for the device every time you use it. (Some devices use the word "bonding" to mean pairing. They both mean the same thing.)

To pair your computer with a phone (such as the T68i):

  1. Turn on the Bluetooth radio on T68i and assign a name to it, such as T68i.
  2. On your Windows XP computer, go to My Bluetooth Places and click on View Devices in Range.
  3. Right-click on the T68i icon and select Pair Device.
  4. Key in the PIN code to be used for pairing on the computer.
  5. On the T68i, you have three choices: Accept, Add to Paired, or Decline. Select Accept to allow the computer to pair with the phone. Select Add to Paired if you want the phone to add the computer to its paired collection. Select Decline if you do not wish to pair.

A useful tip: If you are pairing your computer with a phone take care to use numbers only, or else you may have problems with keying in alphabetic characters using your phone's PIN code dialog.

Wei-Meng Lee (Microsoft MVP) is a technologist and founder of Developer Learning Solutions, a technology company specializing in hands-on training on the latest Microsoft technologies.

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