How to configure a BlackBerry smartphone as a Bluetooth IP Modem on a Mac computer

Article ID: KB18127

Type: Support Content

Last Modified: 12-14-2011


Product(s) Affected:

  • Desktop Software (Mac OS)
  • BlackBerry® Desktop Software (Mac)
  • Mac OS

A BlackBerry® smartphone with tethered modem over Bluetooth® capabilities can be used as an external modem to connect a Mac computer to the Internet using a Bluetooth connection. A script is included with the BlackBerry® Desktop Software that provides the option to select Research In Motion as a vendor when configuring the BlackBerry smartphone for tethered modem use.

Dialing and connection is supported by the wireless service provider and extra fees or additional charges might apply as this is going through the carrier’s network. Contact the wireless service provider for more information about tethered modem support and any form of fees incurred.

Note: Depending on the BlackBerry smartphone that is connected and the wireless service provider (network type provided by the Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) card), the modem script auto-populates the required configuration information when the BlackBerry smartphone user begins the setup of modem capabilities.

To set up an Internet Protocol (IP) modem connection with Bluetooth wireless technology on a Mac computer, complete the following tasks:

Summary of Tasks

  1. Enable Bluetooth services on the BlackBerry smartphone, and configure the BlackBerry smartphone to be discoverable.
  2. Pair the BlackBerry smartphone to the Macintosh computer, and then configure it as a modem.
  3. Configure the BlackBerry smartphone to trust the connection from the computer.
  4. Connect to the Internet.

Task 1 – Enable Bluetooth services on the BlackBerry smartphone, and configure the BlackBerry smartphone to be discoverable.

Complete the following steps:

  1. On the Home screen of the BlackBerry smartphone, click Options > Bluetooth.
  2. Press the Menu key and select Enable Bluetooth.
  3. Press the Menu key and then click Options.
  4. Set the Discoverable field to Yes.
  5. Press the Menu key and click Save.

Task 2 - Pair the BlackBerry smartphone to the Mac computer, and then configure it as a modem.

  1. Open System Preferences on the Mac computer and then select Bluetooth.
  2. Click the + button to open the Bluetooth Setup Assistant.
  3. The Mac computer performs a search of Bluetooth enabled devices within proximity (this might take a few moments). Once the Mac computer has completed the search for Bluetooth enabled devices, highlight the BlackBerry smartphone from the list provided and then click Continue.
  4. A passkey should now appear on the Bluetooth Setup Assistant. At this time, the BlackBerry smartphone displays the following prompt: Enter numeric passkey for <Mac Name>. Type the passkey in the field provided.

    Note: There is a limited amount of time for this step — if necessary, click Continue and then try again.

  5. The Bluetooth Mobile Phone Setup window appears. In the Phone Vendor field, select Research In Motion. Information such as the Phone Model, Username, Password, access point name (APN), and card identification (CID) might be required. The values in these fields are prepopulated by the IP modem script included with the BlackBerry Desktop Software. If the BlackBerry Desktop Software is not installed, this information may need to be obtained by contacting the mobile service provider.
  6. Ensure that the Show Modem status in the menu bar and Show Bluetooth status in the menu bar options are selected, and then click Continue.
  7. Click Quit.

Task 3 - Configure the BlackBerry smartphone to trust the connection from the computer

  1. On the Home screen of the BlackBerry smartphone, click Options > Bluetooth.
  2. Under Paired Devices, highlight the connection to the Mac computer, press the Menu key and select Device Properties.
  3. Select Trusted and set to Yes.
  4. Press the Escape key and select Save.

Task 4 – Connect to the Internet

  1. Open System Preferences.
  2. Click Network.
  3. Identify if Bluetooth or Bluetooth DUN is listed in the interface list. Highlight the available Bluetooth interface and select Advanced to complete the modem configuration.
  4. Verify the following information:

    1. Vendor: Research In Motion

    2. Model: BlackBerry IP Modem (GSM) or BlackBerry IP Modem (CDMA) - depending on the network type the BlackBerry smartphone or subscriber identity module (SIM) card is associated with.

    3. APN: - by default, the APN is displayed.

  5. Click OK to save the configuration changes.
  6. Click Apply.
  7. Click Connect.

For instructions on configuring the BlackBerry smartphone as a USB tethered modem on a Mac computer, see KB19641.

Note: If the above configurations do not allow for successful connectivity, contact the wireless service provider to verify the required information.

For additional details regarding the specific configurations for each wireless service provider, see the Additional Information section.

CollapseAdditional Information

Specific configurations

Using the preceding steps from the Overview section, a configuration might not have been successfully set up with the Bluetooth modem connection on the Mac computer. Some wireless service providers require different configuration information to be manually entered in order to connect the BlackBerry smartphone as an IP modem.

For example, the following information should be configured specifically for T-Mobile® USA BlackBerry smartphone users:

  • APN: or
  • Telephone Number: *99#
  • *Account Name: <space>
  • *Password: <space>

After this information has been specified, click Connect.

Note: <space> indicates pressing the spacebar in the Account Name or Password fields.

IT policy

Dial-up Networking (DUN) might not be permitted by an IT policy on BlackBerry smartphones that are activated on a BlackBerry Enterprise Server. The option within Bluetooth settings will be unchecked and dimmed.


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