CrackBerry Tip of the Day!

Make a visual address book

BlackBerry OS6 makes it easy to add any contact to the home screen. This means you can turn any of your contacts into a shortcut that goes on the home screen (with their picture on it and everything). The shortcut will allow you to message your contact in a variety of ways, all from the home screen. But, let's take that one step further. Instead of just storing your contact shortcuts on the All pane or in Favorites, you can make a visual address book by creating a folder and saving your most-used contacts there. No reason to go to the trouble of putting everyone in there, just the people you message the most.

Start by creating a new folder; you can only create new ones from the All pane (tray). You can't make folders anywhere else. Make sure one of the visible icons is highlighted. It doesn't matter which one, but the Add folder option won't appear in the menu if nothing is highlighted. Press the menu key and select Add folder. Give your folder a name, and we're ready to add some contacts to it.

Go to your contacts on your BlackBerry and highlight (don't select) one you'd like to add to your visual address book. Press the menu key and choose Add to Home Screen. In the dialog box that opens, you'll get options to rename your shortcut, mark it as a favorite, and choose what in folder to save the shortcut. Unless you want your shortcut in two different places, uncheck the box next to Mark as Favorite. Next to location, you'll see the default setting is "Home." We want to change that to the name of your new folder. Click Add, and your shortcut will be in your new folder.

Repeat as necessary to add more contacts. Once you're done, you'll have a quick list of all your most used contacts. At a glance, you'll be able to find who you're looking for. Unlike the actual Contacts, you can order your shortcuts any way you'd like. Clicking or touching the link will open their contact information. In addition, you'll also get the person's recent activity. Emails, Facebook posts, and tweets can all be found here. Select a shortcut and click & hold or open the menu to get a whole hosts of ways to contact, contact.

Though this visual address book does the exact same thing as contacts, it makes things easier. Instead of cluttered with dozens of names, our project only contains those contacted most. We get a friendly face (or icon) to represent our contact; and because the shortcut is in a folder, you can put them in any order you desire. Most importantly, with a little practice, it becomes a super-fast way of connecting with a variety of ways.

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