Navigating Message Threads

Navigating Message Threads
By Kevin Michaluk on 17 Jun 2008 12:12 pm EDT

Our pal Al Sacco posted a handy article today outlining some BlackBerry Tips and Keyboard Shortcuts.

While most of the tips should be well-known to users (like dialing #'s that contain text or putting your Berry into standby by holding down the Mute key for two seconds), especially to those of you who have checked out our BlackBerry 101 Lecture series, there are a few lesser known shortcut goodies in there that should definitely be checked out.

My favorite of the day? Al's tip on navigating message threads:

Heavy BlackBerry users know the pain of trying to catch up on an e-mail thread with multiple responses. You may have received the first response an hour ago, the second and third 15 minutes later and a fourth and fifth could have landed in your inbox just as you get to the first. Without a shortcut, you have to sift through the tons of messages that arrived in between the thread's various components. A much simpler way is to open the first message and then hit the J key to jump to the next response, and so on. You can also return to an earlier message in the thread by hitting the K key. (Note: If the subject line of the thread has been modified, you may not be able to find all responses using this shortcut.)

You can read Al's full article here, and find many more helpful tutorials in our BB Tips, How To & FAQ forum and BlackBerry 101 Lecture Series. And if you're looking for an easy to follow all-in-one BlackBerry education, be sure to check out the solutions offered by BlackBerry Made Simple.

Reader comments

Navigating Message Threads


Ya, Ya - I know we all think we know every little tip and trick our beloved BB's can hide from us. Well, I learned a couple new ones from this article. Very helpful!!

Unfortunately, the only one I could not execute had to do with finding your way back into the middle of an email you partially read (without having to start over from the beginning). Could not get that one to work on my Curve.

Thanks for the inside tricks.

Hey Firesource,

I'm using a Curve, as well, and the tip for returning to your previous place in a message works seamlessly for me.

Just open an e-mail, scroll down a bit, mentally note the location and then hit the escape key to return to your message list. Click through another message or two, and then reopen the first message--the one in which you noted a position. When you first open it, you'll see the top of the message, but if you hit "G," you'll be returned to the place you noted.


Does this only work with BES, or am I misunderstanding how this works? I have four emails, all in the same thread, sent to my phone via BIS & Gmail. If I read the first email, pressing J doesn't do anything. If I'm in a text message that's part of a thread, J brings up a message that says "no message thread in list." This is with an 8330 on Verizon. Is there some setting I have to enable for this to work? Thanks!

As far as I know, there's no specific setting that needs to be enabled for this trick to work, and it's not dependant on whether you're on a BES or BIS.

The subject lines of the threads need to be exactly the same, though, so if the subject has been modified at all, the trick may not work.


The pictures above show this happening while the message is being read. That doesn't work on my Curve. However, from the message list, it does work. Is it supposed to work while you are reading a message?

Thanks -