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BEGINNER'S GUIDE

How and why to use Bluetooth on your Windows 10 computer

68 Comments

Monday, Sep 21, 2015 at 5:18 pm EDT

 68 Comments  Monday, Sep 21, 2015 at 5:18 pm EDT We're rapidly moving from
 68 Comments  Monday, Sep 21, 2015 at 5:18 pm EDT We're rapidly moving from

We're rapidly moving from a wired to a wireless area very quickly as more people are switching to mobile devices, such as laptops, tablets, and phones, and moving away from traditional computers.

people are switching to mobile devices, such as laptops, tablets, and phones, and moving away from

In these computing devices, we can connect all sort of accessories from headphones to speakers, mice, keyboards, and other peripherals that can connect wirelessly to virtually any device thanks to Bluetooth.

Bluetooth is now a ubiquitous wireless technology that transmit data back and forth between devices over a short distance. It allows you to get rid of cables around your desk.

Of course, Windows 10 includes support for Bluetooth. However, Microsoft is making it just a little bit easier to connect different peripherals with this wireless technology.

In this guide for beginners, we're going to look at how to connect any Bluetooth peripheral to your Windows 10 devices (of course, if your computer supports this type of wireless connectivity).

Connecting Bluetooth devices to Windows 10

1. For your computer to see the Bluetooth peripheral, you need to turn it on and set it into pairing mode. It typically involves pressing and holding the Bluetooth button until you see a flashing light that indicates the pairing is ready.

2. Then using the Windows key + I keyboard shortcut, open the Settings app.

3. Navigate to Devices and go to Bluetooth.

4. Make sure the Bluetooth switch is in the On position. (You'll know it is working because you'll notice the message that reads "Your PC is searching for and can be discovered by Bluetooth devices.")

5. Select the device you want to connect and click Pair.

for and can be discovered by Bluetooth devices.") 5. Select the device you want to connect

Once you click Pair, you're all done. Windows 10 will take care of the rest.

Once you click Pair, you're all done. Windows 10 will take care of the rest. You'll notice the "Connected" label under the device name.

Alternatively, if you're simply trying to connect a Bluetooth audio or wireless display, you can simply do the following:

1. In the notification area in the Taskbar, click to open the Action Center button (or use the Windows key + A keyboard shortcut).

2. From the Quick actions area, click the Connect button.

3. Then all the enabled devices will appear in the list, click on the device, and it should pair automatically.

TRY NOW
TRY NOW

Quick troubleshooting tips If you don't see the Bluetooth section on Devices , chances are

Quick troubleshooting tips

If you don't see the Bluetooth section on Devices, chances are that there are issues with Bluetooth driver. Make sure to right-click the Start button, and go to Device Manager to verify the driver is present and installed correctly. If everything looks alright, but you don't see the option, you may want to download and reinstall the latest Bluetooth driver from your computer's manufacturer support website.

you may want to download and reinstall the latest Bluetooth driver from your computer's manufacturer support

If the problem is with the speakers, headphones, mouse, or keyboard, make sure to turn the peripheral off, wait a few seconds, and turn it back on to try again.

Removing a Bluetooth peripheral from Windows 10

Disconnecting a wireless peripheral is as easy as connecting. Just follow the steps below:

1. Use the Windows + I keyboard shortcut to open the Settings app.

2. Navigate through Devices and go to Bluetooth.

3. Click on the peripheral you want to disconnect, and click the Remove button and then click Yes to confirm.

click the Remove button and then click Yes to confirm. That's all there is to it.

That's all there is to it.

If you have come across issues using Bluetooth in Windows 10 and found a different workaround, make sure to share your solution in the comments below.

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READER COMMENTS

68

COMMENTS

How and why to use Bluetooth on your Windows 10 computer

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Log In to Comment | Register SORT BY DATE SORT BY RATING Aashish Chokhani I tried

I tried using a bluetooth speaker, but there is always a small delay in the audio when I am watching a video / movie (atleast thats when it is noticable the most). Anyone else faces that?

5 months ago

What's your setup (make/model of laptop & make of Bluetooth speaker). I own a Anker Bluetooth speaker as well as cheap Technica speaker from Tesco's (in the UK).

They work perfectly across every Windows device I

own; 435, 1020, Asus T100, Medion Flex laptop

they also work with my sister's iPhone. In short, I'm v.surprised you are having such an issue. Try reinstalling/updating the Bluetooth drivers.

and

5 months ago

the Bluetooth drivers. and  5 months ago REPLY  0 Google Start Quick & Drive
Quick &

PROMOTED ON

PROMOTED ON

PROMOTED ON

 

 
… PROMOTED ON … PROMOTED ON …   Aashish Chokhani I have a Dell Inspiron 5000

I have a Dell Inspiron 5000 laptop. Bluetooth speaker is the Nokia MD-12. The lag is of a few milliseconds, but noticeable when watching movies

5 months ago

Same here. Desktop to Sony sound bar has noticeable delay for sound when watching videos. I use the sound bar primarily for music from my desktop, so it's not a big deal for me.

For anyone having issues where the sound bar is paired, but still no sound-go into settings and make the sound bar the default. When the bar is off, it will automatically go to desktop speakers. I didn't have to do this in 8.1, but 10 is different for some reason.

5 months ago

It's probably latency from oversampling the audio stream

5 months ago

I notice it happens especially when streaming videos. Weird enough, it seems more obvious on my laptop but not my Windows Phone.

5 months ago

but not my Windows Phone.  5 months ago REPLY  0 Gatanui I'd hoped they

I'd hoped they would finally enable Windows to accept Bluetooth file transfers without manually having to open the file transfer wizard (after all, WP does) but alas, they didn't.

5 months ago

 
 

Try suggest it at Windows Feedback.

 

5

months ago

Gatanui  
 

Off to do that. ^^

 

5

months ago

We are trying to make our cellphones into computers but i think we need to make our computers a little like

phones

In many regards at least. Too many clicks on

pc Bluetooth, sending and receiving is a bit of a chore

and loosing BT functionality just because of a system update really shouldn't be happening nowadays but its the norm.

5 months ago

nowadays but its the norm.  5 months ago REPLY  0 Gatanui "We are trying

"We are trying to make our cellphones into computers but i think we need to make our

computers a little like phones at least." I agree with you.

In many regards

5 months ago

 

5 months ago

Can Microsoft give me a damn "Connect" button for my Bluetooth devices?!0   REPLY  0 Whodaboss  5 months ago nightryder21  5 months ago REPLY

5 months ago

Please! When a device is paired and listed in the Bluetooth devices section, if not connected there is a Connect button.

5 months ago

There's already such a button in the Action Center

5 months ago

in the Action Center  5 months ago REPLY  2 SergyOrtiz I wish Microsoft could

I wish Microsoft could show a little bit more of love to Mobile Bluetooth profiles. Right now, as soon as you pair a Windows Phone to a computer with Windows, three unknown devices appear in the Device Manager, all of them are Bluetooth profiles that require some drivers from Microsoft.

5 months ago

TechFreak1 Installing Windows Mobile Device Centre usually fixes that problem. If reinstalling OEM drivers does

Installing Windows Mobile Device Centre usually fixes that problem. If reinstalling OEM drivers does not. The generic drivers are a hit and miss for me. They are usually the hands free audio, file transfer and the ability to make calls via Bluetooth on you pc.

5 months ago

via Bluetooth on you pc.  5 months ago REPLY  0 Siddhartha Shivam For how

For how many times do I've to press the "accept" button for sharing multiple files through other phones. It's kinda annoying.

5

months ago

 
   

Agreed

5

months ago

Agreed  5 months ago REPLY  0 Except they removed the ability to use a

Except they removed the ability to use a bluetooth GPS dongle and instead write a new location API that NOBODYAgreed  5 months ago REPLY  0 loribinca uses great job Microsoft Bravo  5

uses

great job Microsoft

Bravo

5 months ago

My laptop cannot detect my Lumia with Bluetooth since I upgraded to Windows 10.

5 months ago

I upgraded to Windows 10.  5 months ago REPLY  0 TooTechnical Have you had

Have you had any success on this issue yet? Since I upgraded my Windows 7 Home Premium to Windows 10 Home Premium, I can go through all the steps of deleting, discovering, adding and even updating the Bluetooth driver. Both my Alcatel OneTouch and Windows 10 are paired, but they refuse to talk to each other. It's incredibly frustrating. I wish I knew where I could post this to get some "real" help. I suppose for now, it's the good 'ol physical exchange via the sd card or the cable.

 4 months ago REPLY  0
4 months ago
REPLY
 0

Once any bluetooth device is connected, If I swotch off device or turn in sleep mode computer, chen I restart device not reconnect alone; have to deletedevice ans stat up connecting process agoin. 4 months ago REPLY  0 marcox92 More connot connect a windows phone to my

More connot connect a windows phone to my computer runnin Windows 10 N (european verson)

5 months ago

If I turn the Bluetooth on my Asus transformer t100am it turns off my tv. A vizio

5 months ago

This is one of the more frustrating and useless, when it comes to a home reciever or headphones, as there is no way to change connection settings to auto, manual or ask every time. So once my home theater reciever is connected via BT and its on, all audio plays through receiver and I have to manually Go in and turn pff BT. Garbageturns off my tv. A vizio  5 months ago REPLY  0 deezus  5

5 months ago

pff BT. Garbage deezus  5 months ago REPLY  2 Just Me I never really

I never really used the bluetooth on my laptop. Now that I do, I am frustrated with the difficulty to connect and disconnect bluetooth device, mainly speakers, using Windows 8. Windows 10 does not seem to have solved that either.

2 months ago

have solved that either.  2 months ago REPLY  0 ebradley Hell, I can never

Hell, I can never seem to get my LG 730 ear buds to connect. WP 8.1 are hit and miss, that has always been a problem.

5 months ago

The article doesn't mention the fact that not all laptops or PC's or tablets come

The article doesn't mention the fact that not all laptops or PC's or tablets come with Bluetooth. I can just see an end user getting very upset when they find out their 4 year old device that happily installed Windows 10, doesn't have Bluetooth and they get mad at Microsoft, or even Windows Central.

5

months ago

 
 

Doubtful

 

5

months ago

Pretty much all laptops have a combo chip WifI+Bluetooth. Desktop PC's do not, it's only a few years ago OEMs started adding WiFi and Bluetooth to motherboards.

5 months ago

Does anyone have suggestions for a Bluetooth game controller? I love my HP Stream 7, but I can't charge and use the usb port for a usb controller at the same time.

5

months ago

 
   

Try DS3 Tool.

5

months ago

DS3 Tool.  5 months ago REPLY  0 WixosTrix I have been waiting years for

I have been waiting years for Microsoft to improve connected bluetooth toggle support and am very happy with the addition of the "Connect" option in the Action Center. Now I can quickly connect/disconnect to my bluetooth devices with ease in Windows 10.

5 months ago

Really? Can you explain. Because it seems to me like you are forced to unpair a device when it would be better to just disconnect.

 2 months ago REPLY  0 biotron2000 I know how, but where's the Why
 2 months ago REPLY  0
2 months ago
REPLY
 0

I know how, but where's the Why part?

5 months ago

where's the Why part?  5 months ago REPLY  3 bradbamford yeah, it looks like

yeah, it looks like he left that part out for you to figure out.

5 months ago

What is the resolution on that monitor? It looks ultra wide.out for you to figure out.  5 months ago REPLY  1 michail71  5

5 months ago

quicklyultra wide. michail71  5 months ago REPLY  0 rpm5101 "We're rapidly moving from a

"We're rapidly moving from a wired to a wireless area very "

5 months ago

I

have a Bluetooth keyboard that worked perfectly on

Windows 8.1. On Windows 10, it always fails to pair.

5

months ago

 

5

months ago

Is Windows 10 going to allow sync of voice/notifications/messaging, like iOS and OSX?   5 months ago REPLY  0 Almost 2016 and BT still fails miserabley. I'm

Almost 2016 and BT still fails miserabley. I'm through fiddling with the finicky crap. Nothing beats a wired connection if you have the ports.to allow sync of voice/notifications/messaging, like iOS and OSX? Kodiak12  5 months ago REPLY 

5 months ago

Yup. My entire set up is now wired with a switch, the reliability of wireless is just poor if you live in a heavily congest WiFi area. Not to mention the hassle of charging peripherals or changing the batteries.Ever since I went wired, lower pings, zero lag whatsoever and that is streaming 1080p/1080i

Ever since I went wired, lower pings, zero lag whatsoever and that is streaming 1080p/1080i on my x1, PS3 and laptop through the same switch.

5 months ago

through the same switch.  5 months ago REPLY  0 caiusherron I still use a

I still use a Dell (made by Microsoft) ball mouse one of the best mouse I eaver used so comfortable and easy to clean and fix and not have to buy a new one because of laser burn out I use it with my computer running windows Me

5 months ago

Laser burn out?!! My dad is still using an MS laser mouse that he bought in the 90's.

5

months ago

What!!

 

Windows M.E!?

5

months ago

It takes a lot of time to pair with my Nokia Bluetooth headset.

5 months ago

PUSHED FOR EVERYTHING!!!!! I don't want to ever TOUCH the keyboard unless I'm actually typing a document/entering text. Voice, mouse and gestures should be the focus, not going backward. But then, that's all Microsoft seems to be interested in doing, as are all the people who pushed for Windows 10 to be the disgusting mess it is now.Nokia Bluetooth headset.  5 months ago REPLY  0 ScubaDog I am SO FLIPPING SICK

I

am SO FLIPPING SICK OF KEYBOARD SHORTCUTS BEING

5 months ago

Chris Tyas
Chris Tyas

You're incredibly naïve and ignorant and also horribly in the minority, do you think Microsoft are interested in your productivity or the tens of millions of people who are right at this second typing stuff into word documents, spreadsheets etc. People for whom to take their fingers off the keyboard to have to use a mouse is a complete pain in the arse and disrupts their workflow? Keyboard shortcuts are a very necessary part of software for people who actually get stuff done and outnumber you by the million. And anyway, what possible harm does having them do you??

5 months ago

This guide is incomplete, it doesn't explain how you can disconnect a Bluetooth device (speaker etc) without removing (unpairing) it. You can have a dozen Bluetooth speakers / headphones paired at once and connect whichever one you want. Unfortunately due to Microsoft's incredible inability to actually communicate the availability of features and instructions for features they have spent so long developing, guides such as this are necessary for 80%+ of Windows users. If you're going to do basic guides please at least make sure they cover the basicsdoes having them do you??  5 months ago REPLY  2 Chris Tyas  5

5 months ago

I've found bluetooth connections to be unreliable and complicated on W10. It was much simpler on 8.1.

5 months ago

Any idea how to send files to your phone from laptop using Bluetooth. There is no such option to send files to a bluetooth device in the drop down menu in Windows 10 as it was there in 8.1 .was much simpler on 8.1.  5 months ago REPLY  2 Ashish Sen  5

5 months ago

My experience is that bluetooth speakers can be very tricky an picky in the order of connecting. When in the settings bluetooth device manager and your computer has found a bluetooth speaker device you can do two things:

1. press pair and wait a bit. if nothing happens press the

bluetooth connect button on the bluetooth speaker any way. 2. press the bluetooth search and connect button first, then press the pair button and wait a minute or two. Don't do both simultaneously or nothing will really happen and you will think either your bluetooth speaker or windows 10 is broken. I learned it the hard way.

5 months ago

And in 2015, Apple devices still aren't able to send/receive pictures etc via Bluetooth!I learned it the hard way.  5 months ago REPLY  0 Brian2014  5

5 months ago

I believe you mean "era" and not "area". I would also argue we have been in a wireless era for some time.via Bluetooth! Brian2014  5 months ago REPLY  0 universe1song I  5 months ago

I

5 months ago

My machines built-in BT (Qualcomm Atheros AR3012)

Not

keeps disconnecting my Logitech K810 keyboard

sure why but I'm suspecting a driver issue since googling it showed it may still have no support for Windows 10 yet

5 months ago

Hello Mauro, can you name the source of the wallpapers from the first screenshot? Thank you very much!support for Windows 10 yet  5 months ago REPLY  0 SebaldJ  5 months

5 months ago

with windows10 but the signal never sustains. I can send date from PC to phone but not from phone to PC (Unless I specifically click the Bluetooth icon from the task bar and click "receive file") I would be happy if someone can help It's kinda annoyingyou very much! SebaldJ  5 months ago REPLY  0 diktea I have a problem

I have a problem

I had paired Samsung galaxy grand2

Posted via the Windows Central App for Android

 5 months ago REPLY  0
5 months ago
REPLY

0

I've used it with Windows 10 during an older laptop install where the Intel WLAN didn't have built-in driver support, so used PDAnet in BT mode to get it updated, and also running a tower BT speaker for streaming movies, music, etc. - it will occassionally require power-cycling the speaker after losing connection, but for the most part is working out great. 5 months ago REPLY  0 Silent Patriot  5 months ago REPLY  0

5 months ago

BT keyboards are bloody annoying with their power save features, long connecting times and no type buffer!out great. Silent Patriot  5 months ago REPLY  0 mayblast I've three different BT

I've three different BT keyboards and they all suck donkey balls, each differently. I may try with the most expensive BT keyboards I can find but I've this feeling I would be disappointed again.

5 months ago

smartphone, just a regular AT&T mobile phone), and they'll connect, but then when I try to send a file from my phone to the computer, I always get a message that the sending was incomplete. What am I doing wrong?be disappointed again.  5 months ago REPLY  0 CherelleRenee I am trying to send

I

am trying to send files from my cell phone (not a

4 months ago

I

am using Dell and have a built-in Bluetooth. Back when I use Win 7, I can stream songs from my Android to laptop

through bluetooth. Now that it's upgraded to Windows 10,

I can't find a way to do the same. Is it not possible on Windows 10?

4 months ago

windows 10 the bluetooth malfunctioned. The laptop is not discoverable by other devices even if I already set it to discoverable. It turned out that my laptop can transfer files to other devices but cant receive any files to other devices. Any help please.possible on Windows 10?  4 months ago REPLY  0 den_ador I have ACER ASPIRE

I

have ACER ASPIRE E 14, after I updated my laptop into

 3 months ago REPLY  0
3 months ago
REPLY

0

iam having dell inspiron15 with win 10 & my mobile is not running as handsfree by bt But it is able to do in win 7 it does so can anyone suggest me something about this issue.

3 months ago

I

have a Dell 8700XPS running Win 10. When Itry to

connect myu iphone and ipod to bluetooth it pairs. When I

try to send music to the computer it does not come thru. Is there a way to do this? Any help appreciated.

Thanks

2 months ago

The bluetooth doesn't show on my laptop. Somebody help

want to connect other devices but I don't know if my bluetooth is on or not.

I

1 month ago

Keyboard. As of late, I have had trouble remaining connected. I have tried repairing, changing batteries and even another BT keyboard. Both fail rain connected. I pair them and it works for a moment but then disconnects. Can anyone help? Thanks in Advance.bluetooth is on or not. I  1 month ago REPLY  0 urphotoguy I have

I

have a win10 Samsung Slate tablet and a Samsung BT

1 month ago

Now that I have upgraded from Windows 7 to 10 (hated 8!), although my smartphone is paired via bluetooth I cannot work out how to play my music from my phone to my desktop speakers. What I am missing?tablet and a Samsung BT  1 month ago REPLY  0 KarenJHare TIA  2

TIA

2 days ago

Too bad your article doesn't address any real issues. I was HOPING that unlike many

Too bad your article doesn't address any real issues. I was HOPING that unlike many of your contemporaries, you'd actually address the real difficulty and issues surround RECONNECTING bluetooth devices WITHOUT having the unpair, then repair the device in order to use said devices. When I open the Quick Actions area and go to Connect, my network media devices show there, and I can even connect to them. BT devices, not so much. Every single time I got to use my BT mouse, I have to remove and repair it. On my Windows 7 system, I can simply hit connect, it connects and works without a hitch. A simple connect button to get your devices to work shouldn't be something so difficult to fathom. Should it? I see many people asking this same question, but the only answers are the ones exactly like the author of the article posted, which is a non-answer at best.

I just want to be able to connect BACK to my bluetooth devices without having to remove and repair the device every time I go to use. Which isn't asking too much, since the ability to easily do so, was there before. Is it?

1 day ago

isn't asking too much, since the ability to easily do so, was there before. Is it?