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The BlackBerry Messenger feature enables you to text chat with other CrackBerry addicts in real time using your BlackBerry. To use this feature, you must have the BlackBerry Messenger program installed on your BlackBerry.

Getting Started

Using Messenger is easy and is a useful time saving device. It requires a little setting up but once up is easy-to-use. Click on the BlackBerry Messenger icon. The first-time you use Messenger you need to specify a display name that identifies you to other users. You must also create a password. After creating a display name and password, you are logged in automatically when your BlackBerry device is turned on and connected to the wireless network.

Creating Contact Lists

Your contact list displays your individual contacts and contact groups. A contact is an individual BlackBerry Messenger user. You must request contacts to install BlackBerry Messenger on their BlackBerry before you can exchange instant messages with them. Requests contain a link to where you can download the program and find out more information about it.

You can send requests to contacts by e-mail or PIN (personal identification number). To find your PIN click on the ‘Options’ icon. Scroll down the menu to Status. Click the Wheel and you will see the PIN listed on this page.

To add a contact, go to the Messenger icon and open Messenger. Click on ‘Contacts.’ From the resulting menu, click on ‘Add a Contact.’ Click ‘Use Once’. You can then ask this contact if they wish to be a contact on your list. Click ‘Request by Email’ or ‘PIN’ and then type either the address or PIN. Press the ‘Enter’ key. To add a message. Click ‘OK.’

If you request a contact by PIN and they are listed in your address book their contact name appears as their ascribed name, not their PIN number. To remove someone from your contact list, just click the contact on the Contact List screen. Click ‘Delete Contact’ from the menu. Click ‘Delete.’ If you wish to see a contact’s information, click the contact on the Contact List screen and then select Click ‘Contact Info.’

You can use groups to sort your contacts. The default group is Contacts. To add a group to your contact list, click the Track Wheel on the Contact List screen. Click ‘Add Group.’ Type a name. Click ‘OK.’

To move contacts from one group to another, click the contact on the Contact List screen. Click ‘Move.’ Select a group. To remove a group, click a group name on the Contact List screen. Click ‘Delete Group.’ Click ‘Delete.’

Sending and Receiving Messages

Once you have people on your contact list you can begin to send instant messages.To message someone, click a contact on the Contact List screen. Click ‘Start Conversation’. Type a message. Press the ‘Enter’ key. That’s all there is too it. Hopefully it isn’t too long before you receive a reply.(Note: During a conversation you can click the Track Wheel. Click ‘Ping Contact’ to cause the contact’s BlackBerry device to vibrate. To turn off the Ping vibration on your BlackBerry device, click the Track Wheel on the Contact List Screen. Click ‘Options.’ Clear the Vibrate When Receiving a Ping check box.)

To reply to a message click the wheel and click on ‘Reply’, type message and then click ‘Send’. To end a conversation simply click the Track Wheel and click ‘End Conversation.’

You can add an additional chatter during a conversation. Simply click the Track Wheel. Click ‘Invite’ to invite other users.

Closing your BlackBerry Messenger, does not automatically end existing conversations. You can still receive instant messages. A bubble icon in the BlackBerry device status section of the screen indicates that a new instant message has arrived.

Conversations that are still active when the BlackBerry device is turned off are re-activated when the BlackBerry device is turned on. However, if the battery is removed, all conversations end.

Availability Settings

You can make amendments to your availability status if you don’t want to be disturbed. You will need to set your availability status to Available in order to receive notification of instant messages. If you set your availability status to Unavailable you prevent the receipt of instant messages.

BlackBerry Messenger also updates availability statuses automatically. The Busy icon automatically displays when the contact is engaged in another activity. A busy icon displays when there is recent key or Track Wheel activity, the contact has received a BlackBerry Messenger notification in the last two minutes, or the contact has not read or responded to BlackBerry.

The Unreachable icon automatically displays when a contact is out of a sufficient wireless coverage area or when the contact is using the phone.

To change your availability status, click the Track Wheel on the Contact List screen. If your status is currently “Available,” click Available. If your status is currently “Unavailable,” click ‘Unavailable.’ Click ‘Unavailable’ to set your status to unavailable and vice versa. Click ‘OK.’

If you set your status to Unavailable, you will still receive instant messages but you do not receive the notification. When you turn on messenger you will be able to see your missed messages, although the senders may now be unavailable themselves.

To receive notification when a contact becomes available, click an unavailable contact on the Contact List screen. Click ‘Set Alert’ to turn on an availability alert. To turn off the alert Click ‘Clear Alert.’

You can set notification options such as Vibrate or Tone in the Profiles menu. To create a notification profile go to In the profiles menu, click a profile.Click ‘Edit.’ Click on a notification option.Click ‘Edit.’Set the desired options and click the Track Wheel. Click Save.

Other handy features

Another feature of Messenger is the emoticon feature. To insert an emoticon while you are typing an instant message, press the Symbol key twice. Click on the desired emoticon.

The AutoText feature will automatically correct typos or replace abbreviations if you set the feature up. Your BlackBerry device has built-in AutoText entries that correct common typing mistakes. For example, AutoText changes thier to their. You can also create AutoText entries for your common mistakes or abbreviations. For example, you can create an AutoText entry that replaces ttyl with 'talk to you later.'To perform that function you must be in a conversation. Click the Track Wheel. Click ‘Edit AutoText’. Click an ‘AutoText’ entry and then select one of the following actions: Edit; New; Delete.

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