How to Add a Bluetooth Gadget to a Windows 8 PC
Bluetooth technology lets you connect gadgets wirelessly to your computer running Windows 8, removing clutter from your desktop. On a tablet, it lets you add a mouse and keyboard without hogging one of your coveted USB ports.
Bluetooth can also connect your computer, laptop, or tablet with some cellphones for wireless Internet access — if your wireless provider allows it, of course.
To add a Bluetooth item to a computer, laptop, or tablet, follow these steps:
Make sure your Bluetooth device is turned on.
Sometimes you can simply flip a switch. Other devices make you hold down a button until its little light begins flashing.
From the Start screen, fetch the Charms bar, click the Settings icon, and click the Change PC Settings button.
You can summon the Charms bar’s Settings pane in any of three ways:
Mouse: Point the cursor at the screen’s top- or bottom-right corner; when the Charms bar appears, click the Settings icon, and then click the Change PC Settings button.
Keyboard: Press Windows+I and press Enter.
Touchscreen: Slide your finger from the screen’s right edge inward, tap the Settings icon, and then tap Change PC Settings.
From the Devices category, click the Add a Device icon.
The PC Settings’ Devices pane appears, listing all your connected devices. Your computer quickly begins searching for any nearby Bluetooth devices that want to connect.
If your device doesn’t appear, head back to Step 1 and make sure your Bluetooth gadget is still turned on. (Many give up and turn off after 30 seconds of waiting to connect.)
When your computer lists your device’s name in the Devices pane, choose the name with a tap or mouse click.
Type in your device’s code if necessary and, if asked, click the Pair button.
Here’s where things get sticky. For security reasons, you need to prove that you’re sitting in front of your own computer and that you’re not an adjacent stranger trying to break in. Unfortunately, devices employ slightly different tactics when making you prove your innocence.
Sometimes you need to type a secret string of numbers called a passcode into both the device and your computer. (The secret code is usually hidden somewhere in your device’s manual.) But you need to type quickly before the other gadget stops waiting.
On some gadgets, particularly Bluetooth mice, you hold in a little push button on the mouse’s belly at this step.
Cellphones sometimes make you click a Pair button if you see matching passcodes on both your computer and phone.
When in doubt, type 0000 on your keyboard. That’s often recognized as a universal passcode for frustrated Bluetooth devices owners who are trying to connect their gadgets.
After a gadget successfully pairs with your computer, its name and icon appear in the Devices category of the PC Settings screen.
To add a Bluetooth device from the Windows 8 desktop, click the taskbar’s Bluetooth icon, choose Add a Bluetooth Device, and then jump to Step 3 in the preceding list. Don’t see the taskbar’s Bluetooth icon? Then click the upward-pointing arrow that lives a few icons to the left of the taskbar’s clock. The Bluetooth icon appears in the pop-up menu, ready for your click.
For more information about Windows 8 and its features, explore Windows 8 For Dummies, available online.