How to send or receive a fax from a Blackberry

The only current way to send and receive faxes with a Blackberry is through an online fax service.blackberry phone used for faxing

These services operate as a virtual fax machine located accessed through the internet. The Blackberry app ecosystem limited at the moment with few apps that provide services (and those that do are, in our opinion, typically slow to be updated). Online fax users of a Blackberry will need to manage their faxes through email while setting up and configuring their services through their primary computer.

At the moment, no software lets a user physically connect a fax machine or printer to their Blackberry so that the phone can act as the modem. As well, there is no option for a Blackberry to use the same existing phone number to double as a fax line.

While there are applications that let a user print to a printer through their phone, there are none we are aware of that let a person fax through the same printer.

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Online Fax Services and Blackberry fax apps

An online fax service is a dedicated fax number that is hosted by a service provider. It can be accessed to send and receive faxes through a Blackberry through email, web interface, or another computer or tablet.

The Blackberry app ecosystem is, in our opinion, mostly limited when it comes to fax services. Most users would be best off using a fax service primarily through their regular email application on their phone, and configuring more relevant options through their regular computer.

Compared with a fax machine, an online fax service offers the ability to fax directly from the Internet without a dedicated phone line in your house, as well as the ability to access or manage fax communications from anywhere you can access the internet.

Interfaces are very much similar to a web-based email account (with the exception that you have the ability to send and receive faxes), and features such as faxing through email, the web, and integration with popular programs such as the Microsoft Office Suite (Word, Excel, Outlook, etc.) are available.

Online fax services can also be accessed from other devices – for example faxing to and from a computer, tablet, or another smartphone through the same account.

For full details on online fax services compatible with Blackberry and other operating systems, see our page on Online Faxing.

What you’ll need

  • A Blackberry with an active internet/data connection (can be cellular data or WiFi) – having the latest software version usually helps with app compatibility, but isn’t necessary if you only plan on faxing to and from email.
  • Some services require a computer to set up more advanced features such as customized cover pages and signature stamps
  • A subscription to an online fax service
  • A document to fax

Sending a fax

Sending a fax from an online fax service depends on the service itself, and can be done in a number of ways.

Email

When sent through email, attachments are used to send faxes. A file that can be attached can be sent as an email, as long as it is one of the file formats that the fax service provides.

The email’s subject line and main body of the page becomes the cover page. The cover page template already includes other data such as the sender’s name and reply to phone number.

App

Blackberry fax apps are limited in selection. Check with individual services first if a dedicated app is important to you. As well, Blackberry is typically not as up to date as their iOS and Android counterparts.

Receiving a fax

With most services, an email client is used to view the fax.

As an online fax service hosts the fax infrastructure, when a fax is received the fax service receives it regardless of whether you have a phone or computer powered on and connected to the internet.

With most services, a copy of a fax arrives as a PDF (or TIFF) attachment to an email. However, you can configure the system to only access faxes through an app or web interface.

Faxes can be accessed (and replied to) from any computer that has access to the online fax account.

Things to consider

  • When the phone sends faxes, they are billed as data (either cellular data or WiFi), not as phone minutes. The online fax service hosts the fax infrastructure, and you as the user access it through the internet. While WiFi transmissions are usually free, cellular data is not always.
  • Your Blackberry phone does not need to be on to receive a fax this way. The fax service manages the fax infrastructure, and you access the fax service when you choose to (most people configure their service, so a fax arrives as an email).
  • Some services with advanced features (such as customizing cover pages and adding signature stamps) may need to have those advanced features set up through a computer.

Other Resources on Computer and Online Faxing: