Bluetooth® dial-up networking (DUN) refers to getting wireless Internet connectivity on a laptop by using a Bluetooth®-enabled cell phone. Bluetooth® DUN is a good alternative for wireless Internet when there are no local hotspots or wireless access points to provide faster, more efficient access. At a minimum, it allows one to check email or perform other lowband online tasks.
Bluetooth® is a personal access network (PAN) technology that uses radio waves in the 2.4 gigahertz range to connect personal devices. It is most often used to connect cell phones with hands free headsets, but is also used for communication between personal digital assistants (PDAs) and laptops, cell phones and laptops, mice, keyboards and printers, and even game consoles. Bluetooth® DUN is just one of the many ways Bluetooth® technology improves personal flexibility in the digital world.
To create a Bluetooth® DUN connection, one must first configure the laptop for enabled Bluetooth® connectivity. The cell phone must also be configured to communicate via Bluetooth®. The laptop should recognize all Bluetooth®-enabled devices in the immediate area. The cell phone is selected as the device of choice, and a Bluetooth® DUN shortcut must be configured the first time a connection is made. In this step, the laptop is configured to communicate using the Bluetooth® modem rather than the standard internal modem.
When setting up a Bluetooth® DUN, an Internet Service Provider (ISP) username and password are required, as is a dial-up access phone number. If the Bluetooth® connection is encrypted, the user may also need to enter a Bluetooth® security code into both the cell phone and the laptop. This will allow the devices to successfully “handshake,” or form a connection.
Once a shortcut to the Bluetooth® DUN has been created on the laptop, the user can click on it anytime to use the cell phone to dial an access number. Online speed fluctuates depending on various factors, but Bluetooth® supports between one and three megabits per second (mbps), depending on the Bluetooth® specification used. For perspective, a basic Digital Subscriber Line (DSL) service transfers data at about 100 mbps.
Since different cell phones and laptops have different navigational steps for pairing Bluetooth® devices and creating a Bluetooth® DUN, Bluetooth.com created instructional videos. By clicking on Connecting Devices from their home page, the Bluetooth® enthusiast can find specific device-pairing videos. If your phone model is not listed, there are also generic instructions available for setting up a Bluetooth® DUN.