How do you use your BlackBerry: Do you use the LED for notifications on your device?

By Adam Zeis on 9 Mar 2011 12:18 pm EST
BlackBery LED notifier

I know this one sounds like a bit of a "duh" question, but I know there are actually users who don't use the LED indicator for notifications. I've been through phases where I just got plain tired of seeing the LED flash, and since I checked my device so often anyway, figured I didn't need to have it on. Now I actually use BerryBuzz for BBM, SMS and a few other apps but still don't have an LED set for emails. Weird huh? So do you use the LED? Do you hate it? Do you use a 3rd party app (like BerryBuzz) I'm curious to know if I'm alone in my protest of the LED, so cast your vote in the poll above then leave a comment letting us know what works for you.

Adam Zeis Adam Zeis "Mobile Nations Content Strategist" 3740 (articles) 2892 (forum posts)

Reader comments

How do you use your BlackBerry: Do you use the LED for notifications on your device?


I have Fixmo and use the LED thing for phone calls, but as nice as they are to have, I don't use them alot. I'm more of an audio notification person... don't rely on vision :)

I use BerryBuzz for colors, and have custom sounds for each alert, so I know what I got (email, text, BBM, Facebook, etc), just by hearing the noise, or looking at the colored light..

If you don't use LED notifications you may be missing a key part of the blackberry experience. Also BeBuzz amps it up to the next level. Do yourself a favor and if your not using LED notifications at least give it a try. It's upto you personal preference if you also want to use BeBuzz

EXACTLY. this was one of the main reasons i couldnt stick with android, i NEED the LED. once you have it, you cant live without it :)

Same here. What's "duh" is NOT including an configurable LED. If any type of communication was missed, why should I have to pick up my device and perform some sort of action to activate the screen to look for missed messages? I should be able to glance over, look for a flashing LED, and then look away. Not having an LED (Apple) is just another way to force people (Apple) to senselessly pick up a device and play around with it.

i love the red LED best feature of bb!

however i use custom ringtones for each different alert rather than paying $6 for different coloured leds!!

Be Buzz +1

LED notifications are awesome for the office or meetings when you simply can't have your phone sound off. This way you can know what kind of message is coming in just at a glance.

Heck, I'm color blind and I still use it! How could you not!?

Agreed with many here. When I left BB for Android, the LED and customizations I had on it were one of the things I missed most and made me return to BB. I use BeBuzz to customize colors for contacts. I love that I can tell who sent me an email/text from across the room just by the color of the led.

Don't have a third party app, but I still use LED notifications, as my berry is on vibrate when I'm at work. I don't always hear the vibrate, so it is nice to just glance at my BB and see if there is anything I need to look at, just by whether or not the LED is blinking.

I have BeBuzz and have diff lights from my BMM, UberSoc, BerryWeather Alerts, Incoming Calls, Facebook, and Calendar

BeBuzz FTW all the way! I've been using it for years (BerryBuzz before) and love it. In the office it makes it easy to know what is happening with the phone on silent, since I used a different color for different types of messages, etc... Red for email, yellow for text, blue for BBM, etc...

Wow, am I the only one using Big Tin Can's BuzzMe Premium? Anyways...yes the third party app for different colors makes it infinitely more useful!!!

I use BuzzMe Premium... I like it because I can tell from the color of the flashing LED what notifications I have. I also like the customizable vibrate so I can distinguish between different notifications when my BlackBerry is in my pocket.

The only downside of BuzzMe Premium is that the vibration is not silenced when in Silent or Bedside Mode.

I love these polls.. I recently added my work email and was starting to get really annoyed with the fact that My phone would constantly Vibrate and Flash Red.. Thanks to this post I got the brilliant Idea to the cut LED notifications off for my Work Email only. Now my phone only Vibrates when I get a message from work.

I ONLY use LED notifications (+ vibrate). BeBuzz is awesome. Custom ringtones are really emabarassing IMO. I find them to be really annoying. Everything is set to customized colors through BeBuzz including: SMS, FB, BBM, Gmail, BB Mail, Favorite Contacts, Google Talk, Phone Calls, Visual Voice Mail, etc. etc... So I always know exactly whats going on w/ my BB by just glancing at it.

While this would be cool. I think BB does a great job of allowing you to customize every single notification you recieve through sound, feel (tactical), and visual. I don't know of any other platforms that do that right out the box..

I use berrybuzz for sms, text, and calls. Like you however, I turn the LED off for emails. I get so many the LED would be constantly blinking

Another BeBuzz fan! My phone is usually on silent so I love being able to tell by the color of the blinking light what's come through!!

BeBuzz is perfect, different color for email (work and personal), txt, facebook, yahoo, aim, bbm. I even setup a separate color for any communication from my family.

actually the only thing i use led notifications for now is bbm. all other led notifications are set to off.

I'm surprised no one on here has mentioned 'Who is it?'. I found their app to be much better than BeBuzz (For the free version anyways).

I love Who Is It and it makes my BB much more enjoyable in my opinion.

Anyone else use it?

I use the built-in LED for email notifications and BBM.

Social feeds makes a quiet ping but doesn't distract me, so that if I don't hear it I don't mind, and if I do then I can choose to ignore it.

Emails vibrate when holstered but not when on my desk. This is where the LED really comes in useful because an email can arrive and not distract me from what I'm doing until I'm ready to glance over at the phone.

LED notifications FTW!

Could care less about the LED. Far easier on my eyes to just take a glance at the screen, which offers far more granular notifications in FAR less time than some multitude of different blinks/colors that I have to remember what each different combination means.

When I had a Tour I always just used the red led for notifications like when it came out of the box. Its a very handy feature. I now have a Droid X. Luckily fir me it has a notification led as well. The light is green instead of red but its not that big of a deal to me. There's also a blue light as well so I have email set to use the green and sms to use the blue which sounds similar to what alot of you use berrybuzz for.

When away from my BB I like having the ability to not have to pick up my phone to see if I missed and thing sms, yahoo, facebook and or contacts.

No, I don't use it, but it's not because it 'burns my eyes' but more because I do not see it. On the Torch, when holstered, the LED is unfortunately hidden ans since my BB is holstered 90% of the time (I guess you can say I ain't a real crackberry if I keep it holstered that much though lol.

BeBuzz here. All important people in my life have their own color so I can see who is contacting me when my phone is on silence during meetings.

I use Who is It? All family and favorite contacts have their own special color. I have customized ringtones for primary contacts, but the LED notifications really help in those times that the ringer has to be set to silent.

I love the LED. And cant see not having this notification option. I use Buzzme Premium and as like most of us have colors set so I know what and if its worth checking. Although I also like the fact you can turn it off for apps. Things like Facebook, Twitter, and an email account or two I'd rather not be bothered by. I can see the icon on the screen whenever I'm looking at my device and decide then. Lol. It would be nice if you could take the LED options deeper into things like BBM and can choose contacts and groups settings individually.

The LED notification is absolutely great, and the omission of this feature is, to me, shortsighted and downright ridiculous, much as how the iPhone for the longest time--and the new Windows Phones initially--left off copy & paste. (What kind of smartphone doesn't have copy & paste--c'mon!)

I'm not worried about color schemes so much (other than knowing that yellow means a low battery), but simply seeing the LED flicker when the screen is off means I can rest easy not having to keep the screen alive to know if I missed anything. I just glance across & see if the LED is flashing--if not, nothing to see here.

Why should I have to stop what I'm doing and fire up the screen to see if I've missed something? As much as I love smartphones--they don't call them "Crackberries" for nothing--I have other things I'm doing as well. The idea of smartphones, especially at such times, is that it's supposed to integrate into my already existing life, not take it over. You want to know if you have messages & reply to them, but otherwise you're doing other things vs being totally glued to your device. Having the ability to quickly see that there are no messages and then immediately get back to what you were doing earlier, that sort of "balance" is what I like to have, and having LED notification helps to do that.

With BeBuzz the ability to use dull and bright LEDs has given me a ridiculous amount of options in terms of customizing my alerts (as well as customizing colors as well). Just by glancing at the LED I can tell if I got an e-mail, Faceboook message, missed call, see if a certain person texted me, etc. It's a great way to see if I can ignore just another e-mail or if I need to reply to an urgent text.

I use bebuzz and I love it! The led notifications are one of my favorite and most used features on my 9700. I have all of my important contacts under custom colors, custom vibrations, and ringtones. I find that even though my contacts have custom tones 99% of thre time I keep my phone on vibrate and depend on the vibrations and glancing at the led color to see who is calling, texting etc... I will never switch to another device that doesn't include this feature, though I wouldn't switch from a black berry either!

Another BeBuzz's the first app I install! I generally keep my phone on silent at work. I have different LED colors for email, SMS, BBM, GTalk/MSN, Facebook, and Twitter--so I know what I've got (and therefore, how quickly I need to deal with it) just based on the LED color.

I don't see any mention of a consistent problem I've always had with using the LED on blackberries, so maybe it's just me... I have stopped using the LED notification due to 50% of the time the notification doesn't clear after I read the new message. It will remain blinking long after I've read the text, e-mail, etc. and makes it more or less useless in silent mode as it always appears there's a new message.

Anyone else experience this? I've had the same problem sporadically across my 8310, 9700 and 9800.