Sunday, 1 May 2011


My recent bluetooth hardware upgrade has given me the chance to play around with some old and (I thought) redundant equipment. To my delight, it seems that some of that kit is not quite as redundant as I'd thought!

In a previous life I spent much time driving around the UK and, as a law-abiding and safety-conscious citizen, I used a bluetooth headset to make and receive telephone calls. Although I no longer drive tens of thousands of miles a year, I still own the headset (a Jabra BT135) and I decided to see if it could be put to use as a Skype headset on my Inspiron 6400: it can!

You can install Skype from the Ubuntu Software Centre.

To install your headset:
  1. Make sure that bluetooth is activated on your PC.
  2. Open your bluetooth Preferences dialog. This is usually achieved by clicking the bluetooth icon in your system tray or notification area: a pop-up menu will offer the Preferences option. If you don't use a system tray or notification area, go to System > Preferences > Bluetooth.

  3. With your bluetooth headset switched off, press and hold the power button until the operating light is a steady blue.
  4. In the bluetooth Preferences dialog, make sure that your computer is visible to other devices and click the Set up new device... button: the New Device Setup wizard will appear.

  5. Click Forward to invoke the device search.

  6. Select the device (the Jabra BT135) and click the Forward button. If you are prompted for a PIN number, the default for the Jabra BT135 is 0000.
  7. When the setup is finished, you'll receive a confirmation screen:

  8. Click the Close button to return to the Preferences dialog and you should see the headset listed in the Paired Devices window.

You may need to tell Skype what device to use: go to the Sound Options window in the Skype options dialog to set your preferences.

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