How to Activate Bluetooth on Your Samsung Galaxy Tablet - dummies

How to Activate Bluetooth on Your Samsung Galaxy Tablet

By Dan Gookin

Computer nerds have long had the desire to connect high-tech gizmos to one another, such as connecting your Samsung Galaxy tablet to a printer. The Bluetooth standard was developed to sate this desire in a wireless way.

Although Bluetooth is wireless communication, it’s not 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.

Basics of Bluetooth on your Samsung Galaxy tablet

Bluetooth is a peculiar name for a wireless communications standard. Unlike Wi-Fi networking, with Bluetooth you simply connect two gizmos. One would be your Galaxy tablet, and the other would be some type of peripheral, such as a keyboard, a printer, or speakers. Here’s how the operation works:

  1. Turn on the Bluetooth wireless radio on both gizmos.

  2. Make the gizmo you’re trying to connect to discoverable.

  3. On your tablet, choose the peripheral gizmo from the list of Bluetooth devices.

  4. If necessary, confirm the connection on the peripheral device.

    For example, you may be asked to input a code or press a button.

  5. Use the device.

When you’re done using the device, you simply turn it off. Because the Bluetooth gizmo is paired with your tablet, it’s automatically reconnected the next time you turn it on (that is, if you have Bluetooth activated on the tablet).

Bluetooth devices are marked with the Bluetooth logo. It’s your assurance that the gizmo can work with other Bluetooth devices.


Bluetooth was developed as a wireless version of the old RS-232 standard, the serial port on early personal computers. Essentially, Bluetooth is wireless RS-232, and the variety of devices you can connect to and the things you can do with Bluetooth are similar to what you could do with the old serial port standard.

How to activate Bluetooth on your Samsung Galaxy tablet

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

  1. On the Apps screen, touch the Settings icon.

  2. Choose the Connection tab.

    Not all versions of the Settings app feature a Connections tab. If you don’t see the tab, don’t worry.

  3. Touch the button by the Bluetooth item.

    When the button is green, Bluetooth is activated.

When Bluetooth is on, the Bluetooth status icon appears.


To turn off Bluetooth, repeat the steps: Touch the button in Step 3 to turn off Bluetooth radio.

From the And-Now-He-Tells-Us Department, you can quickly activate Bluetooth by using the Quick Actions on the notifications shade. Touch the Bluetooth icon to turn Bluetooth on or off. As a bonus, when you turn Bluetooth on by using the Quick Actions, you’re immediately taken to a device-scanning screen.