A quick guide to your BlackBerry 10 phone options

BlackBerry 10 Phone
By James Richardson on 2 Jan 2014 01:34 pm EST

This is going to sound kind of foolish but here goes anyway. I've been using BlackBerry 10 since mid January 2013 and it wasn't until just the other day that I opened the settings in the actual phone app. I've no idea why - maybe it's just the fact that I don't make many phone calls, but if like me you're a BlackBerry 10 phone settings virgin you'll be pleased to hear that there are a ton of options and tweaks you can make. These options may well vary depending on which version of BlackBerry 10 you are running and I expect we'll see some changes in the future too. 

As you can see in the above image all the categories are simply laid out and it's just a case of scrolling up and down the list and choosing the one you want. First for me to alter was the 'Call Audio' option. Here you can give either the bass or treble a boost which although not an amazing feature - still a nice option to have. 

For hardware keyboard users you'll be pleased to see that you can assign your most used contacts to your keyboard. I can't believe I hadn't thought of doing this before as I use the Q10 as my daily driver, but I'm rocking speed dial now. To get a contact added you just chose the letter (or number) key and then select the contact. It couldn't be easier. 

For those of you that like to use an official holster/pouch you'll have the option for phone calls to be automatically answered when removing from the holster. The same goes for ending the call by replacing the BlackBerry back in its pouch. The two options have their own on/off toggles so if you prefer just to have one active you can do so. 

Call forwarding is not a feature that I use, but I have in the past and with BlackBerry 10 you have four options. These are:

  • Forward all calls
  • Forward if busy
  • Forward if not reachable
  • Forward if no reply

Just slide the toggle on for the one you wish to use and add the number. Perfect for those of you that don't get great mobile signal at home as you can easily route phone calls to your landline. Bear in mind that some carriers will charge you for this privilege though, so it's worth checking with them. 

Priority Calling is a neat little feature which once again can be switched on with a swipe of the toggle. If for some reason you can't take the phone call you can set your BlackBerry to automatically send a text message to the caller. As you can see below there is a default message in place but you can alter this to whatever you want. In the business world this could well be a deal breaker as customer satisfaction is everything. This option would at least give caller a sense of priority - hence the feature name! 

I've only showed you half the features within the BlackBerry 10 phone options, but there are a whole load more, such as TTY (teletypewriter) mode, Hearing Aid Mode, Call Summary, Show My Number, Call Blocking, Call Waiting (which I didn't even have turned on), Bluetooth Headset Auto Answer and Voicemail - where you can set up a password. 

So, it looks like with BlackBerry 10 there are a bunch of useful options you can utilize within the phone. I'm sure current BlackBerry 10 users haven't been as naive as me, but for new users this short guide will hopefully give you the best experience from your BlackBerry 10 smartphone when it comes to actually using it as a phone. 

Reader comments

A quick guide to your BlackBerry 10 phone options


I think one of the problems with BB10 was that heavy users of 7 didn't have time to learn all the new stuff, but keeping those users happy would have resulted in a burning platform (tm). So far Apple have managed incremental changes which aren't too fast to alienate the fanbase.
What was missing in BlackBerry was a 'conversion wizard'.

Posted via CB10

I appreciate the promotion of the product, as it's your job, but when you line up the BBOS Phone Features (aka vibrate in holster among others), BB10 severely lacks in the functionality department compared to its predecessor.

It's depressing to say the least, considering QNX was acquired by BlackBerry in 2010, and these phones have been out for over a year.

Posted via CB10 on

@ Wayne.... I had, probably, 5 BBOS phones and now a Z30..... "trust me" there is NOTHING depressing about the "trade off" at all......

Ditto on the numerous BBOS and BB10 devices. And "trust me" there are SEVERAL things to be depressed about.

One key speed dialing is one of them. But thankfully its coming back in 10.2.1

Posted via CB10

He didn't say there was nothing missing/lacking, he said "there is nothing depressing about the trade off..." Pretty sure he meant the pros of BB10 greatly outweigh the cons of any missing legacy features. I'd agree with him.

The 4th Call Forwarding option is Forward if No Reply.

You accidentally put Forward if Busy a second time.

Posted via CB10 from my new Z30!

Thanks for the heads up. I looked into the phone settings when I first bought my Z10 but had since forgotten about it.

Posted via CB10

BlackBerry 10 is definitely getting there, adding stuff on board. I like this OS! It's keep on getting better and better every month. I like.

Z10 STL100-1 OS

James - Great article.... always great to find new "tricks and settings" for my Z30....

Question: Is there "Setting" that can be changed to tweak the fabulous "Natural Sound" on Z30?... just wondering...

Priority Calling, at least on my Z10 didn't work like that... but I did have a separate Option called "Reply Now" which it seems is the same thing you described.

Awesome, I knew about all the features, except the auto text reply if I couldn't take the call.

This makes one or two of the paid apps redundant

Posted via CB10

I don't use most of these options. I do like the fact that with I can actually use single key speed dialing. I only have 3 numbers programmed but I call those numbers more than any others.

Posted via Q10

The problem with the Q10 and keyboard speed dial, is that you have to be in the Phone app and in the numpad feature in order to use it. You can't just hold down a letter from the home screen and call a person like you could do with the old OS. I love BlackBerry but it seems that even when moving forward they always take some steps backwards. This is not the only example.

Posted via CB10

Patience, it is coming with the next upgrade. I miss that too but we will get it soon.

Powered by BB

I wish Verizon offered Call Forwarding the way you have it shown. With Verizon the feature is missing on the phone. Instead you have to call #71 to forward calls and #72 to cancel forwarding. So it is possible, but the nice feature (if busy, not reachable, etc) is not an option.

Thanks for the reminder, it has been quite long since I had looked into that settings.

Sent from my Z 30

Just to add to this post.... you can also assign speed dials to the dial pad numbers on touch screen phones.
I only noticed this on the leak, but it could have been in there earlier. It was missing on the first few releases.

James. You mentioned how the settings may Vary depending on what OS vs your on (& they do) but then you didn't say what OS vs you were using. You may want to add that ;)

From what I see I would say your on 10.2
Priority calling is not available on 10 or 10.1 Also, I could be wrong, but I think Call Forwarding has been changed slightly in 10.2.1

Thanks for this, I too didn't have call waiting turned on!

What would we do without Crackberry, keep up the good work and don't worry about anything being too basic, I think we tend to over look these things for the more exiting options.

We mustn't forget it's a Phone!!!!

Posted via CB10

Can't find the phone settings on my Z30. How do I find it? Also, does anyone know how to turn up the volume of phone calls? I have trouble hearing people while on calls.

swipe down - just like any other "app".
you can turn up the volume by using the.... volume up/down keys when on a call. It should remain at that level for the next call.
Also, check that you're holding the phone's ear speaker directly at your ear canal - seems ridiculous to mention it, but you would be surprised how many times I've told people that they're holding the phone "too high" on their head. Your ear shouldn't be on the screen.

If BlackBerry users kept an eye on the settings file a ton of apps out there would be useless. Mist are builtin with just two or three extra taps.

Posted via CB10

Hi I'm having trouble with speed dial on my Q10 when i press D for my hubby Dave is comes up with a search window not speed dial.... what am I doing wrong? please help it's driving me insane.

Posted via CB10

One addition that would be nice would be to have the ability to set the default screen the phone app opens up with. I dial way to many people accidentally. I would much prefer the keypad. I have probably called more people by accident than on purpose and can be problematic if you are avoiding certain callers. I clear my log now after almost every call.

Posted via CB10

Same here!

I was looking for the call forwarding options and I just expected them to be under phone settings in the main device settings.

I actually had to go onto BlackBerry support to read a tutorial which told me to swipe down in the phone app, I didn't expect all those settings to be hidden away.

Posted via CB10

I miss my broadcast bbm per category contact from my 9930. In my Q10 now I get frustated when I want to broadcast a massage to my customer member only. I must chose one by one.

Posted via CB10

This is a perfect example of blackberry demise...bb10 is supposed to get them back in the game, and yet they couldn't take the best of bb7 and improve on it...it's mind boggling how they left some of the most basic features and ask us to wait to 10.2 whatever to come out to give it back to us

Posted via CB10

The weird part of blackberry 10 I don't get, is when Show My Number (not the restrict/block the outgoing number from showing up on caller ID units), it doesn't even show on the phone app when calling anybody. I miss this feature! It shows "my number: UNKNOWN NUMBER"

Posted via CB10

It's an often overlooked or disregarded fact.

Have a poke around in your settings menu when you get a new device. I did also after going from 10.1 to 10.2

Zzzzwiped from a Zedevice....

Can anybody tell me if I can forward calls from my Q10? I'm not getting the call forwarding option like the OP, is this because I'm in the US on Sprint's Network? Or because I'm still stuck with 10.1?

Posted via CB10

Help please I installed the syscamera bar and clock bar on my Q10. Now the camera is not working anymore .My system is 10.1

Posted via CB10

Please give me the option to delete the camera function on the opening screen. (picture taking is not my priority in a BB) or let me replace it with another function, eg telephone and or hub

Posted via CB10