Ten T-Mobile G1 Tips and Tricks

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Product manuals are lame. The last thing we ever want to do when we purchase a fresh new gadget is sit there reading through a manual. Instead, we love to dive right into the gadgetry and start playing with our new toys. So we went through the T-Mobile G1’s horribly boring 48 page user manual to find 10 useful tips that you’ll really want to know.

1. Dial by Voice
The G1 supports voice dialing, and you can easily call a friend by stating their name if you press and hold the Send key on the G1. Bonus Tip: If you want to add in another caller while you’re on the phone, press the Send key while in a call.

2. Use an mp3 as your Ringtone

We’re not big fans of people using mp3s as ringtones, since the music selection is often pretty awful. Nonetheless, we’ll tell you how with the G1. Open Music > Songs > and hold your finger on your song of choice. Next, select “Use as phone ringtone.”

Read on for more.

3. Access the Applications Menu from Anywhere

If you’re surfing the Web and want to quickly bring up your music player to switch songs, you can quickly do this by holding down the Home button on the G1. This will quickly bring up your Applications menu. If you want to go directly to the desktop, just press the Home button once.

4. Turn on Wi-Fi
Phones don’t just automatically have Wi-Fi capabilities turned on. To do this, press the Menu key while you’re on the home screen.

Next, click Settings > Wireless Controls and select Wi-Fi
Open Wi-Fi settings to force the G1 to search for available networks.

5. Place your phone in silent mode on the fly

You just walked into a movie theater a few minutes late, and you want to quickly put the phone in silent mode without browsing through menus to do so. Avoid this by toggling silent mode without opening the G1. Simply press and hold the End key to put the phone in silent mode.

6. Add songs to a playlist
When you’re playing co-pilot on a long road trip, the music selection is up to you. Make the song selection smoother by creating a playlist ahead of time. On the G1, open up Music > Songs, and then touch and hold any song that you want to add to a playlist. A menu will pop up, and you’ll want to select Add to playlist.

7. Install a microSD card

You can install a microSD card for adding more storage or using your phone as a portable hard drive (see tip 9), and here’s how. First open the keyboard. Next, look for a small memory card cover below the Send key on the G1. Take your microSD card and slide it forward with the gold teeth facing down.

8. Typing Tips

Insert special character: Press ALT + Spacebar
Delete entire line of text: Press ALT + Delete
Turn on all caps: Press Shift Twice
Move cursor to end or beginning of text: Press Alt while scrolling Trackball
Insert a Tab space: Press Alt + Q
Highlight text: Press Shift and roll Trackball

9. Use your phone as a portable hard drive

The G1 supports high capacity microSD cards, which means you can add up to 16GB of storage to it. That’s as good as carrying a portable hard drive around with you. To treat your G1 as a portable storage device, you need to turn on mass storage.

Plug your G1 into your computer using a USB cable. Navigate to the home screen and select Menu > Settings > SD card & phone storage. Next, select Use for USB storage. Now a folder will pop up on your computer, and you can drag and drop music, videos, or any file of your choice onto the phone.

10. Cut, Copy, and Paste Text
Copying, cutting, and pasting text from Web sites or documents is easy with the G1.
To Cut, press Menu and x.
To Copy, press Menu and c
To Paste, press Menu and v.

Add a comment
  • Moin@droid Says:

    Hey Todd, That's great man. You read their manual.
    I remember about manual only when I've issues with gadget and there is no one around to help me out.

    Though I think it's always good idea to go through manuals (if you're interested)


  • prince Says:

    plss help me..ive just accidentally turn of the wi fi of my G1,den d problem is i also log out my google accnt,the worst i cant log in anymor and i cant used my phone bcoz even ive tried to log in,my wi-fi still off...how can i turn on my wi-fi??plss elp me... :`(

  • Dani Says:

    im wondering if anyone knows how to switch all your memory from your phone to your sd card. i just purchased an 8gb memory sd card because my g1 keeps saying "phone storage space is getting low"
    does anyone know how to make it stop saying this?

  • Mo Says:

    Jim!!! You may never read this but you are the greatest.... Not often my inquiries are resolved this quickly... just got my G1 and cuz of you, i will have some music to listen to tonight at work!!! Thank you, JIM!!!!

  • Jinesh Says:

    to Delete a ringtone...!

    Download the Astro File manager from the market or any other source.
    Install the application.
    Now open the application and browse to the location where u hav saved ur ringtone.
    Long press on the ringtone u want to delete.
    select "Edit" from the option poping up.
    select "Delete" to delete the ringtone.
    Happy :)

  • blueeii Says:

    How can u tell if a caller mutes themselves or puts you on hold on the G1? any apps?

  • blueeii Says:

    How can you tell if you are being put on hold on the G1 is there any apps for that?

  • bridgette Says:

    ok so tip number 9, it keeps telling me to turn off usb storage. how do i get that to work, i cnt get the folder to open.

  • kplove Says:

    can u set the music u download off computer as a ringtone for individual contacts

  • Frootloop Says:

    Two things: first, how do i simply turn OFF music after I have played it. Second: Why can't I send out pictures on a mms?? None of them go through....

  • Ego Says:

    Sorry about that guys, I could not delete the ringtones from the sound and display menu in Settings. I used music media and set them as my ringtones. I also could not delete actual downloaded/Proloaded G1 Mobile Ringtones.

  • Lala Says:

    @Ego, that does not work. When you go to music ringtones do not come up.

  • Ego Says:

    To Delete Ringtones and items from your SD Card or G1, simply go to the ringtone you don't want. (Should be in your music folder) and hold your finger down on it. Options will come up that say use as phone ringtone,play,etc. Delete is in that same options menu. Do the same with your SD Card. Go to the item you don't want and hold your finger over it. Press delete and it's gone. I also found that a quicker way on some things is to hover over it using the trackball and pressing the delete key. =)

    G1 made simple

  • brianar Says:

    does ANYBODY know how to delete ringtones on a g1. i downloaded off myxer. i even called tmobile n they dnt have a clue. i mean where does the files even go to.all this stuff on this phone and u cant even delete a ringtone?? gotta do better than that.

  • kimmy Says:

    So no one knows how to delete these stupid unwanted ringtones that is downloaded..I refuse to belive that we are stuck with these ringtones that take up so much space..

  • Jim Says:

    Zack asked:

    does anyone know how to delete items from the SD card?


    Use the USB cable that came with your G1 to connect your G1 to your computer. The computer will recognize the G1 as a new USB drive, but it will tell you “Please insert a disk into drive X: ( where X: is the identity of the new USB drive on your computer). This is the computer’s way of telling you the USB drive is not mounted. To mount the USB drive on your computer, slide the notification pane at the top of your G1’s screen down, and select the item named ‘USB Connected’ then choose ‘Mount’ from the popup options. Now you will be able to open the X: drive on your computer and delete files.

  • nelson Says:

    how i do to watch videos on the web sites is any flash player available or i have to wait for any update

  • Zack Says:

    does anyone know how to delete items from the SD card?

  • jorg Says:

    How can I get t9 texting on the touchscreen wiithout buying and downloading better keyboard?

  • Victoria Says:

    i am asking this question for my uncle because he just got his G1 phone and wants to know how he can get a notification on the screen when someone is calling him while he is texting? email me at proud_and_single_momof3_2009@yahoo.com

  • emma Says:

    im just wondering how you do tip number 1
    i dont quite understand how to do this one and i would read my manual except the shop didnt give me one with my box! :@ :(

  • Weather Proof Cameras Says:

    I have had my G1 for a little over a day now and I cant get over how awesome it is, it even has a metal detector app; how the heck did they do that?

  • kmac Says:

    You have. To do a factory reset..

  • about to freak out Says:


  • Neil B. Formy Says:

    Hmmm... so the idea of having an on screen keyboard, seemed more important than a decent file explorer. I am one of the many that used Myxer.com to download ringtones. Shame on these companies for not allowing us to delete our ringtones. I think that would be a fundamental OS user option. Unbelievable.

  • joshua Says:

    how do you make put ringtones" for the message alert!!!

  • cookedquotient Says:

    Missing from the "typing tips"; For texting, shift then enter to insert a newline/linefeed, handy for multiline texts. Just hitting actually enter sends the message while on many other phones (sidekick) it inserts a newline.

  • fatal Says:

    Ho do I delete movies off the sd card with out having to go to a computer?

  • jaleesa Says:


  • jaleesa Says:


  • Jim Says:

    To get TIP #9 working on your phone (Use your phone as a portable hard drive):

    Use the USB cable that came with your G1 to connect your G1 to your computer. The computer will recognize the G1 as a new USB drive, but it will tell you "Please insert a disk into drive X: ( where X: is the identity of the new USB drive on your computer). This is the computer's way of telling you the USB drive is not mounted. To mount the USB drive on your computer, slide the notification pane at the top of your G1's screen down, and select the item named ‘USB Connected’ then choose ‘Mount’ from the popup options. Now you will be able to open the X: drive on your computer and move files into the music, dcim or albumthumbs folders.

    Now the secrets of the universe have been entrusted to you. Use your new powers wisely, young Jedi.

  • Gerald Says:


  • Gary Says:

    to forward a text just go to the text message you want to send hold finger on it and you get the option to FORWARD spent most of today trying to find that out

  • kevin Says:

    how can i forward a text or pic with this phone

  • Dominique Says:

    How do you delete one single call off of the call log on the G1?

  • joey Says:

    Umh miss brianna we need to know how to delete ringtones after downloading them. And its called its not in the manual!

  • brianna Says:

    To delete a song on the g1 all you have to do is press the menu button and press delete its so simple. To delete something off the main screen u press and hold it then bring it down to the little trash can...! U people are idiots seriously its called a manual!!

  • Linnae Says:

    Not sure if you can do it with the existing call log, but there's a free app called Exact Call Log that shows exact times and lets you organize calls by incoming, outgoing and missed if you want.

  • Says:

    does anyone know how to change the missed call time setting like missed call 5 hours ago to actual time when call was made.

  • Harleyman Says:

    Put your finger on the widget holding your finer on it slide it towards the top of the screen

  • Grace Says:

    does anyone know how to delete a winglet form the main screen ?

  • Grace Says:

    After a week with the G1, I am still having problems checking messages and basically getting it to function. Thank heavens for G1 Tips and Tricks!!

  • macrohardt Says:

    Oh Ringdroid should help you with your ringtone issues. http://code.google.com/p/ringdroid/

    Also here are some more android tips, if you are interested. http://android-tips.com

  • Albert Says:

    How do you delete ringtones, because it doesn't let me? Can u show me how. Thanks

  • jordan Says:

    i need help on how to delete ringtones off of the g1 because it seems like there is no way possible

  • John Says:

    10 basic tricks.... Easy hands on steps. (Amazing...Need 10 More!)

  • Alex Says:

    10 basic tricks... Perfect...

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