You’ve got mail – on your phone!

You were this close to sending a very important mail to your boss and puff goes your connection, now you could use your phone to call your boss and may be get fired or use the same phone to set things right with a bluetooth-enabled and GPRS phone. The key advantages of using bluetooth are that you don’t need to install the phone on the PC and you can keep the phone anywhere close by, such as in your pocket while connecting.

To start, you’ll need a Bluetooth phone and you’ll need to subscribe to the Advanced GPRS feature that all service providers offer under different names. Check if your connection is working by using the phone’s browser to open any website. The next thing you need is, of course, a laptop or a PC with a Bluetooth adapter, installed and working. I’ll be looking at Bluetooth adapters that use the WIDCOMM drivers, not the built-in Microsoft ones which are severely limited.

First, enable Bluetooth on the phone. Then, right click the Bluetooth icon on your Windows system tray, select “Quick Connect”, then “Dial-Up Networking” and finally “Find devices.” It will find your phone and show it in the list. Double click on the phone name, or select it and click “Connect.” Windows will install your phone as a Bluetooth modem. When done, it will also create a shortcut to the Bluetooth dial-up connection in your Network Connections folder.

Now the tough part – go to the Control Panel, select “Printers and Other Hardware,” and click on “Phone and Modem Options.” Switch to the “Modems” tab and highlight the “Bluetooth Modem” item in the list. Click “Properties” to open up a settings box. In here, click the “Advanced” tab to find a box where you can enter “Extra initialization commands.” Hutch users enter +CGDCONT=1, “IP”,”www” and Airtel users use +CGDCONT=1, “IP”,”” Confirm these modem initialization strings with your service provider before using them. Click OK a bunch of times to close all the dialogue boxes. The tough part is pretty much over.
Double click on the Bluetooth connection in your Network Connections folder for the dial-up dialog to come up. Don’t enter a username or password, just enter *99***1# as the number and click “Dial.”

If all goes well, you should be online in just a few seconds! The speed of the connection varies between different times of the day and also between different service providers. At some points in time, the connection is just fast enough to send the email that’s pending, but at other times, it’s quite fast and actually “browseable.” And finally there goes my very important mail to my boss.

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