Filtering Contacts in the People Hub

When you create a new account on windows phone by going to settings > email + accounts, you can also choose to sync the contacts that are included with the account, along with any related email, calendar, and tasks.

emailaccounts2If you don’t want to sync the contacts at all (so contacts are NOT stored on the phone at all), you would edit the account in the email + account settings to remove the checkmark in the box next to “Contacts” under the “Contact to sync” heading.

Contacts that are synced to a phone can be hidden from view in the People hub via the phone’s People hub filter settings.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This article describes how you can toggle the contact filter on and off.

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Troubles texting pictures and other media on your phone?

Most modern cell phones provide a way to send and receive short text messages via SMS (Short Message Service) and to send and receive short text messages with attached photos, videos and music via MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service). 

  • SMS (Short Message Service) is used to send text only messages
  • MMS (Multimedia Messaging Service) is used to send text messages that include attached files (music, pictures, videos).

If the phone’s MMS APN (access point network) settings are not correctly configured for your cellular provider, you might still be able to send and receive SMS messages (text only) on the phone, but you won’t be able to send or receive) MMS messages on the phone. 

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Working with Documents on a Windows Phone via the Office Hub

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You can view and work with Office 2013 files (Word, Excel, PowerPoint and OneNote) from your Windows Phone by opening up the Office Hub on the phone.

The Office Hub “places” screen is where you can access the folders and documents that are stored on your phone, any email attachments received to your Microsoft email account that you’ve opened on the phone, and all the folders and documents that are stored on your OneDrive or Office 365 (sometimes referred to as sharepoint) accounts.

When you access the OneDrive place through the Office Hub, you will also be able to access any folders and files that have been shared with your OneDrive account from another OneDrive account.

The Office Hub “recent” screen, which you can view by swiping over to the right is where you can create new documents and search for documents that are stored on the phone, as an opened email attachment, on your OneDrive or Office 365 account or across all four places.

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Pairing & Unpairing Bluetooth Devices with Windows Phone

Pairing a Windows Phone to another Bluetooth enabled device is pretty easy to do, but you might be disappointed when you do it.  When I got my first Windows Phone – a Samsung Focus (WP7) – one of the first things I tried to do was pair it with my Bluetooth keyboard.  The phone paired just fine, but nothing I typed on my keyboard showed up on my phone. After researching the problem I realized that the phone was missing the HID profile, which it needed to know what to do with the keyboard after the pairing was achieved! 

Bluetooth profiles possess the “capabilities” that enable a Bluetooth connected device to interpret and act on the commands received from another Bluetooth connected device.  In order for the Bluetooth radio in a receiving device to translate and act on the commands sent from another Bluetooth device, it must possess a compatible profile as the sending device.

The Samsung Focus does not include the Bluetooth HID profile (Human Interface Device) that would enable it to connect to and use external devices like mice or keyboards…..and unfortunately even today the latest Windows Phone 8.1 devices do not include this profile so I still can’t use my bluetooth keyboard with my phone.

(Click this link to review a wikipedia article for a more comprehensive description of bluetooth profiles and their related capabilities).

In this article I’ve provided a list of the Bluetooth Profiles that are supported on Windows Phone, and I’ve demonstrated how to pair and unpair a Windows Phone with another Bluetooth enabled device.

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The Files App Finally Gives Windows Phone 8.1 a File Explorer

Microsoft published a “Files” app to the Marketplace around the end of May that is compatible with Windows Phone 8.1 only.  The Files app enhances the phone’s functionality by providing the phone with File Explorer type access to user files.

I finally got some time to spend exploring all the goodness that the Files app brings to the phone. As you can see from the screenshot below, we can now access the various types of files we store on a phone in a way that is similar to a File Explorer. Instead of opening up the Office Hub to browse and share the Excel, PowerPoint, Word and other files that are stored there, we can find them via the Files app in the Documents folder; Music and audio files are stored in the Music folder, Photos and Videos are stored in the Pictures folder, etc. The Files app also gives us access to a Downloads folder and a Ringtones folder.

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