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5 cell phone features that simplify life
Ankur Jain
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February 21, 2007

Many of us buy expensive cell phones with gazillion features, but remain clueless about their functions.
If you are one of those people, then, here's what
you need to know.

Speed dial

A feature that allows you to call your friends and loved ones just by pressing a single key on your phone's keypad. Most modern day phones support this feature. You can assign any number to a contact you wish to call in a hurry.

To find out if your phone supports speed dial, unlock the keypad and press any numerical key for about 2 seconds (except 0 in most cases). If your phone starts dialing a number present in your phonebook or displays a message indicating 'Number / Record not found', it supports speed dialing.

Quite a few cell phones support upto 9 speed dial numbers (some support more, depending on the memory). You can also edit the number by pressing the option for speed dial in the phone book menu.

Battery saving mode

There are some days when you're too busy to charge your phone or when you forget your charger at home. To get the maximum talktime and standby time for your phone, follow these tips:

~ Reduce the backlight level and duration for the phone display.

~ Reduce the screen contrast to the minimum readable level.

~ Turn off screensavers, if any.

~ Reduce the ringtone to the lowest possible volume.

Flight Mode

Airplane, offline or stand-alone mode is the synonym for flight mode. Some phones have a special mode that turns off the wireless radio transmission part of the device for safe use while on an aircraft where radio transmitters are not allowed.

The use of wireless radio devices like cell phones on aircraft has been banned by the government to prevent interference with the plane's radio and navigational systems. Hence, flight mode allows the user to safely use the non-wireless functions of the phone such as music, games, organisers and various mobile phone applications.

Please note: Not all airlines allow the use of mobile phones on board even in flight mode. Do check with airline officials before using this feature.

T9

It stands for 'Text on 9 Keys', and usually comes loaded on most handsets to make typing text faster and easier on numeric keypads. T9 is a software that combines a group of letters pressed to check the dictionary for all possible words that can be formed using these key combinations.

For example, to type the word 'fill' on your regular mobile phone keypad, you need to press '333' to type 'F' then '444' for 'I' followed by '555' for the first 'L' and '555' again for the second 'L'. This means 12 key presses to type '4' characters for a mobile message. With T9, you can find out which word you want by pressing any key 4 times. Check your phone booklet for steps to activate 'T9'. Learn more by visiting T9.

Copy Records / Phonebook

Unlike the old days, you can save your contacts in the phone memory as well as the SIM (subscribers identification module) card memory. Usually, contacts are saved in the SIM card, although some save contacts in the phone memory as well as the SIM card.

However, when switching to a new cell phone, contacts saved in the old one cannot be transferred unless you copy all contacts on your SIM card and then transfer them to your new phone. One can copy all contacts from a SIM card's memory to the handset's memory within a couple of minutes, provided there is enough free memory available.

As different manufacturers have different navigational menus, it is not possible to list the exact steps to activate the above mentioned features. Go through the user manual of your handset for more information.


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