Get online with a cell phone

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Tips

• Don’t have Bluetooth on your laptop? PC Card and USB adapters can easily and inexpensively add Bluetooth to a laptop that doesn’t have it on board. Bluetooth adapters are also available for cell phones, but they allow you to connect only to Bluetooth headsets; you can’t use them to connect to a Bluetooth-enabled computer.

• Turn Bluetooth off when you’re not using it. Leaving it activated all the time could make it easier for someone to gain unauthorized access.

• You might need to upgrade your cell phone’s firmware to properly handle data. Double-check with your service provider while you’re signing up for data access; it can save you headaches down the line.

Check the script

Most phone manufacturers provide PC-only modem scripts. Mac users can find free scripts for many of the most common phones at www.taniwha.org.uk. GPRS users will have many different scripts to choose from for any particular cell phone.

If you have a choice, try the one with +CGQREQ in its name first. It’s also important that the script’s Connected Information Device (CID) number match your cell phone’s CID number (1 through 6). You may be able to find your phone’s CID number by checking its data account information screen. If not, you’ll have to experiment by trying each script in turn until you find one that works.

What’s your network?

Trying to figure out the best way to connect your phone to your laptop? It helps to know which kind of cellular network—GSM or CDMA—your service provider uses.

Carrier Network
AT&T Wireless/Cingular GSM
Metro PCS CDMA
Sprint PCS/Nextel CDMA
T-Mobile GSM
Verizon Wireless CDMA

[ Fred Johnson is a product manager for iPhoto at Apple Computer. ]

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