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How to Use Bluetooth on Your Android Tablet

The Bluetooth standard was developed to sate this desire in a wireless way. Although Bluetooth is wireless communication capability on your Android tablet, it’s not quite the same as wireless networking. It’s more about connecting peripheral devices, such as keyboards, mice, printers, headphones, and other gear. It all happens in a wireless way.

Bluetooth devices are often marked with the Bluetooth icon, shown in the margin. It’s your assurance that the peripheral can work with other Bluetooth devices.

How to activate Bluetooth on your Android tablet

To make the Bluetooth connection, turn on the tablet’s Bluetooth radio. Obey these directions:

  1. Touch the Apps icon on the Home screen.

  2. Open the Settings icon.

  3. Ensure that the button next to the Bluetooth item is set to On.

When Bluetooth is on, the Bluetooth status icon appears, which looks like a little Bluetooth logo.

To turn off Bluetooth, repeat the steps above: Touch the On button to reset it back to Off in Step 3.

  • Using the Power Control widget, you can quickly turn on or off Bluetooth right from a Home screen.

  • You’ll also find a Bluetooth switch in the Quick Settings for your tablet. Display the Quick Settings shade or access the Quick Settings part of the Notifications shade to look for the Bluetooth switch.

How to pair your Android tablet with a Bluetooth peripheral

After ensuring that the tablet’s Bluetooth radio is on, the next step to connecting a Bluetooth peripheral is to pair the devices. Your tablet and the Bluetooth gizmo must start wirelessly holding hands. Pairing is required before the tablet can use the device, and you must pair the tablet to each Bluetooth peripheral you want to use.

To pair your Android tablet with a Bluetooth device, follow these steps:

  1. Ensure that Bluetooth is on.

  2. Turn on the Bluetooth gizmo or ensure that its Bluetooth radio is on.

    Some Bluetooth devices have separate power and Bluetooth switches. Your goal here is to make the Bluetooth device discoverable.

  3. On the Android tablet, touch the Apps icon on the Home screen and open the Settings app.

  4. Choose Bluetooth.

    You’ll see the Bluetooth screen. The Bluetooth screen shows any devices already paired with the tablet.

    image0.jpg image1.jpg
  5. If the Bluetooth device has an option to become visible or discoverable, select it.

    For example, some Bluetooth gizmos have a tiny button to press that makes the device visible to other Bluetooth gizmos.

    After making the Bluetooth device visible, it should appear on the Bluetooth screen. If it doesn't, touch the Search for Devices button.

  6. Choose the Bluetooth device from the list.

  7. If necessary, input the device’s passcode or otherwise acknowledge the connection.

    Not every device has a passcode. If prompted, acknowledge the passcode on either the Android tablet or the other device.

After you acknowledge the passcode (or not), the Bluetooth gizmo and your Android tablet are connected and communicating. You can begin using the device.

Connected devices appear on the Bluetooth Settings window, under the heading Paired Devices.

To break the connection, you can either turn off the gizmo or disable the Bluetooth radio on your Android tablet. Because the devices are paired, when you turn on Bluetooth and reactivate the device, the connection is instantly reestablished.

  • How you use the device depends on what it does. For example, a Bluetooth keyboard can be used for text input, a computer using Bluetooth can be accessed for sharing files, and a printer can be used for printing documents or pictures.

  • You can unpair a device by touching its Settings icon, found on the far right next to a paired device. Choose the Unpair command to break the Bluetooth connection and stop using the device.

  • You need to unpair devices you don’t plan on using again in the future. Otherwise, simply turn off the Bluetooth device when you’re done.

Printing to a Bluetooth printer

The common way to print information from your Android tablet is to use a paired and connected Bluetooth printer. The secret is to find and use the Share button or command, choose Bluetooth, and then select your printer. Of course, here are some more detailed steps:

  1. View the document, web page, or image you want to print.

    You can print from the Chrome app, Gallery app, Maps app, or a number of apps you can install on your Android tablet.

  2. Choose the Share command.

    If a Share icon isn’t visible in the app, touch the Menu icon to look for the Share command.

  3. Choose Bluetooth from the menu.

  4. Choose your Bluetooth printer from the list of items on the Bluetooth Device Chooser screen.

  5. If a prompt appears on the printer, confirm that the Android tablet is printing a document.

    The document is uploaded (sent from the tablet to the printer), and then it prints. You can view the uploading status by checking the notifications in the lower-right corner of the screen.

Not everything on your Android tablet can be printed on a Bluetooth printer. When you can’t find the Share command or the Bluetooth item isn’t available on the Share menu, you can’t print using Bluetooth.

  • Bluetooth printers sport the Bluetooth logo somewhere.

  • To print from the Maps app, view a location’s information and choose the Share This Location command. Choose Bluetooth.

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