3 New-to-BlackBerry How Tos

CrackBerry.com's BlackBerry 101 Lecture Series
By Kevin Michaluk on 5 Feb 2008 03:20 pm EST

Welcome to BlackBerry 101! I meet a lot of new BlackBerry users each week - many in person (I tend to talk to anyone I see carrying a BlackBerry) and many more electronically via emails and forums. I've always said the BlackBerry is an incredibly efficient and intuitive device, but it only becomes incredibly intuitive and efficient once you learn a few basics with the device - how the BlackBerry button brings up menu options pretty much wherever you are, where different settings are located, etc..

I think a lot of new BlackBerry users tend to skip "learning the device" and just begin using it immediately, which for the most part works pretty well. But sometimes this skipping a step leads to not being able to figure out how to accomplish some fairly basic tasks.

In the past week I was asked the same the same 3 questions more than 4 times each by new BlackBerry users. The questions:

  • How do I turn off the always-blinking green LED Light?
  • How do I find my BlackBerry Pin?
  • How do I dial phone numbers that contain text?

They're all easy (once you know how) and all answered in detail after the jump!

How To Turn Off The Always Blinking GREEN LED Light

How to Turn Off the Always-Blinking Green LED Light:

  • Go to Options
  • Go to Screen/Keyboard
  • The LED Coverage Indicator will be set to "On"
  • Turn it to "Off"
  • Save Changes
More on the LED Indicator: This is one of the functions that really puts the 'Crack' into CrackBerry. Thinking back to the electricity course I took in high school, LED stands for Light Emitting Diode. The LED indicator blinks in different colors to deliver different notifications to the user:
  • Blinking RED: The LED indicator blinks red whenever you have incoming/waiting communication messages on your phone - new email, new call/missed call, new BlackBerry Messenger message, new SMS, etc. It is basically impossible to ignore the blinking red light - you'll find yourself having to reach for your BlackBerry no matter what. Welcome to BlackBerry Addiction. As Martha Stewart would say, It's a Good Thing.
  • Blinking GREEN: Coverage Indicator light. This lets you know you are connected to a network. It's annoying as all heck and you will want to turn it OFF before it drives you mad (if turned on, it never stops blinking!).
  • Blinking BLUE:Lets you know your phone is connected to a Bluetooth device, such as a Bluetooth headset.
  • Blinking YELLOW: Plug it in! A blinking yellow light means it is time to charge your BlackBerry as you are running low on juice.

How To Dial Numbers That Contain Text

How To Dial Phone Numbers That Contain Text:

  • Open the Phone Application
  • Dial Your Numbers per Normal (1800)
  • When it comes time to Dial a Letter, Hold Down the ALT key and dial the letters (GOT JUNK)
  • Once you are looking at what you want to dial (1800GOTJUNK), Call the Number
  • Your BlackBerry will Automatically convert the Text into the Appropriate Number (in this case 18004685865)

If people don't know this tip and you show it to them for the first time they will be really impressed (seen it dozens of times), so spread the word! EVERY BlackBerry User should be aware of this.

How to Find Your BlackBerry PIN Number

How to Find your BlackBerry Device PIN:

  • Go to Options
  • Go to Status
  • Your Device PIN is listed


  • from the homescreen, hold down the Caps and Alt buttons, then hit H
  • this will pull up the Help Me! Screen, which includes useful info including your PIN

You need your BlackBerry PIN for lots of things - sending PIN messages to other BlackBerry owners, using BlackBerry Messenger (click link for How to Use it), and when purchasing software, for example from the ShopCrackBerry.com Software store, the device PIN is often required for generating software activation codes.

That's It!

See you next week class! In the meantime, if you have any BlackBerry Related questions that need answering, be sure to search them out in our CrackBerry Forums. Can't find your answer? Post a Question. If you're not familiar on how to use forums, check out this CrackBerry.com How To!

Reader comments

3 New-to-BlackBerry How Tos


Once again, I am amazed with the features RIM has equipped these devices with. I don't know how many times I have been stuck trying to figure out what the numeric number is for text in a number. I have convinced another family member they need a curve just based on this.

My Pleasure! If I can help one person use their berry better and that leads to another person buying a BlackBerry then my work here is done! :-)

Maybe it's not the same on all devices, but on the pearl if you type in 'mypin' it will "autocorrect" to your pin number in text messages and emails. Actually anywhere you enter text it seems, makes it easier than trying to remember it anyway.

I just tried out the 'mypin' and it worked!!! Thanks...that's very cool.

Your how 2's are making my life a WHOLE lot easier! (YES the red light sealed the addiction for me too! My daughter is constantly saying are you playing with your crackberry again?!) But I did not know that it turned any other colors! (read the manual in small increments) lol Thank you SO very much!

I can not figure out how to simply dial a phone number. Also, when I go to my call log and press the *68 to enter my Verizon email account the phone tries to enter letters instead of numbers so the phone doesn't recognize the code. Obviously, I am a new blackberry user but I can not figure it out!

Hi I am new to this. I tried to download facebook for BB, it worked but then asked for my keystore password, not the first time Ive come across this, so after 6 entries, only 10 allowed, I still don't know what the heck it is or where to find it! What happens if I use all 10 enteries -does it explode!Please help me

Im trying figure out how to view deleted info e.g messages and call logs. I saw it done and im not sure how but i kno its a way to see what was erased out of the phone and im wondering if someone can help me i erased some really important information and i need it back.

I am trying to figure out how to get my browser to open through the browser icon. It seems since I set up my blackberry email account that has somehow over written the browser icon and i just get questions about my email account instead of the browser. I am so confused.

This is my first day with the 'berry. Tech support in the Verizon store made sure I did not leave without this website in hand! I look forward to leaving the realm of n00b and heading into my new life - free of the dark days of Palm Treo!

thanks for the info in this tutorial...my only issue with it is that you used 1800gotjunk as your example...i am an operations manager for their main competitor! haha, it really doesn't bother me though...you should definitely change it to 1800junkusa...much better company ;)

love that tip......but it will not work with the STORM
no ALT key.

Maybe someone knows how to do that with the STORM

thanks for your time.

Roland Falcioni

the storm wont need to do it, because it has the option to change to numbers (t9) like you would have with basic multimedia devices (non-pda's)

in your bbm or text message, type mypin & then press space & your pin will automatically appear.
hope that helps =]


My 8830 was working fine when suddenly the screen went black and the red light blinks 4 times very quickly and repeats after about 1 second.

I've tried charging all night - no change

Took battery out for several minutes and replaced
- only change was red light came on solid for few seconds and then 4x blink mode

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Can someone please tell me hot to increase the volume and number of ring times.
I am missing all my calls it vibrates and then two rings.
Can I stop the vibrate to add more rings
I have my setting on high ,there is no option to not have it vibrate,and I have the BB pearl 8130.
Hope someone can help ,or I will have to replace it .

I have had my BB 83330 for a couple months. Usually i find a way to fix my problems but this time im stuck! I connected my phone to the computer because i wanted to upload some pictures to my computer and when it asked me for my pin i typer it in, and it said incorrect, i know my pin ITS MY PHONE! i couldnt figure out why it wasnt working!then it said last chance, or we will wipe your phhone or something so i took out the battery but now it just says

JVM 513
RESET ... on the screen and nothing is happening what do i do !pllllllleaaaaaaseeeee help me !