BlackBerry FAQ Answered: Why is Software in Applications List in BOLD Text?'s Al Sacco explains why certain apps within BlackBerry users' Applications lists are bolded, while others appear in normal, non-bold lettering.

I get a lot of BlackBerry-related questions. From colleagues, coworkers, family, friends, readers, the list goes on. The majority of inquiries are very basic. Things like "How do I make my BlackBerry's battery last longer?" Or "Why is my BlackBerry memory so low?"

image of BlackBerry Applications List with Apps in Bold
BlackBerry Applications List with Apps in Bold

But every once in a while, I get a question I haven't covered in my blog or elsewhere on And this week, I got a good one from a friend who shall remain nameless, per his request:

If I open up my BlackBerry Applications list (BlackBerry Options > Advanced Options > Applications), some apps appear in bold text. Why are only specific apps listed in bold while others are in regular, non-bold text?

The answer to this one's quite simple, really. Software listed in bold within the BlackBerry Applications list has permissions that have been modified from the default settings to allow the apps access to certain "protected" device features, like GPS for location services or phone logs for call-related apps.

For example, if you decide to install local search app Poynt on your GPS-enabled BlackBerry, you're prompted to accept certain application-permission changes, so the app can utilize your device's location to deliver relevant search results. If you choose to deny the permissions changes, Poynt will not be able to employ your internal GPS. (Note: You must accept certain permissions changes for some applications or they won't function correctly or at all.)

image of BlackBerry Applications List with Edit Default Permissions Menu
BlackBerry Applications List with Edit Default Permissions Menu

You can always change permissions back to default settings after the fact as well, so you shouldn't worry about making initial changes, unless you suspect apps of being potentially harmful, in which case you probably shouldn't install them anyway. To return a specific application to your default permissions settings, simply scroll over the app in the Applications list, hit your BlackBerry Menu key and choose Apply Defaults.

You can also modify your default permission settings at any time. Just click your BlackBerry Menu key while you're in the Applications list, choose Edit Default Permissions and pick your own custom settings.

For more similar tips and tricks, how-tos, reviews and more, check out my BlackBerry Bible.


FREE CIO BlackBerry Newsletter

Get better use out of your BlackBerry and keep up-to-date on the latest developments. Sign-up »

Copyright © 2009 IDG Communications, Inc.

Discover what your peers are reading. Sign up for our FREE email newsletters today!