B2G Quick Start Guide

Version: 1.14.148
Date: 2017-11-22 12:50 UTC
Organization: National Braille Press
Contact: Brian Mac Donald
88 St. Stephen Street
Boston, MA 02115
United States of America


Thank you for purchasing a B2G. National Braille Press hopes that you will enjoy the features and flexibility that it offers you. Please read this document first before doing anything else.

Unpacking the Box

In the top layer you will find the wall charger, a three-foot long USB charging cable, and ear buds. When you lift this layer up, you will find the B2G wedged within a protective foam layer for shipping. There are gaps in the foam along the middle of the front and back edges of the B2G so that your fingers can reach in to pull the B2G up and out of the foam packing. Try to reach under the B2G on both sides, and not to squeeze the unit, when removing it from the packing. Place it on a table or desk with the refreshable braille cells closest to you.

Orientation and Description

The Top

There is an eight-dot braille keyboard at the back of the top. The four keys on the left, from left to right, are dots 7, 3, 2, and 1. The four on the right, from left to right, are dots 4, 5, 6, and 8. The Dot 7 key is often referred to as the Backspace key, and the Dot 8 key is often referred to as the Enter key.

There is a square directional navigation pad with a small, round button in the middle between the Dot 1 and Dot 4 keys. The four edges of the square are the Up, Down, Left, and Right keys. The dome-shaped button in the middle is the Center key.

The long, rectangular key in front of the Dot 1 key, the square pad, and the Dot 4 key is the Space bar. It is positioned for being pressed by your thumbs.

The braille display (20 eight-dot cells) is at the front of the top. There is a small, round button just behind each cell - these are the cursor routing keys.

The convex, square button to the left of the cursor routing keys is the Backward key, and the one to their right is the Forward key.

The Front Panel

There are two internal stereo speakers at the left and right ends of the front panel. An internal microphone is behind a very small slit in the middle, near the bottom edge.

The Left Side

The earphone/microphone port is near the front of the left side. It is a standard size 3.5mm OMTP (Open Mobile Terminal Platform) jack.

The zip lock bag that contains the wall charger also contains a small earphone adapter. This adapter should be pressed onto the plug at the end of the ear buds cable. Remember to pull the adapter off if you ever replace your ear buds because it snaps on tightly and is easy to overlook.

A composite video (RCA) jack is in the middle of the left side. It is for connecting an external video monitor or TV, and is used for performing diagnostics. It also makes it easy for a sighted person to offer direct assistance.

A Standard-A (or host) USB port is near the back of the left side. USB devices (memory stick, external keyboard, mouse, Ethernet adapter, hub, etc) can be connected here. Devices that draw power from the port will drain the B2G's battery so using a powered hub, when possible, should be considered.

The Right Side

The volume controls are the two small, round buttons near the front of the right side. The one toward the front is the Volume Down key, and the one toward the back is the Volume Up key. These keys adjust the volume of the current Android audio stream.

The Power Switch is the slide switch near the back of the right side. Its off position is toward the front, and its on position is toward the back. Don't turn it on yet.

The Back Panel

The SD card slot is the long slot in the middle of the back panel.

A Micro-USB device port is near the left end of the back panel. It is primarily used for charging the battery. The battery can be charged either with the supplied wall charger or from a computer's USB port.

The Bottom

Caution: All refreshable braille displays are fragile. Don't ever put the B2G upside down onto a hard surface. If you need to turn it over (e.g. either to press the Reset Button or to open the bottom cover) then first place the B2G on a soft, cushion-like surface.

There are six foot pads on the bottom - one on each of the four corners, one in the middle along the front edge, and one in the middle along the back edge.

The Reset Button is hidden within a very small, round hole on the bottom at about the eight o'clock position on the edge of the corner foot pad nearest to the Power Switch. A blunt-tipped object such as an unbent paperclip should be used to reset the B2G.

When you flip the B2G over front-to-back, the small raised circle that is about 3/4 of an inch (2 cm) in from the middle of the right side is the camera's lens, and the sunken rectangular window that is just a little further in is where its flash LEDs are.

The Removable Cover

There is a removable, rectangular, plastic cover in the middle of the bottom that allows access to a SIM card slot (for those using the B2G as a phone). Otherwise, there isn't any reason to open it. Opening it exposes the circuit board.


Powering Up

Slide the Power Switch on by pushing it toward the back of the unit. You should hear one short beep when the B2G starts to boot. If, instead, you hear three short beeps then the battery is too low and the device won't boot. In this case, switch it back off and charge the battery for a while before trying again.

The B2G takes around a minute to fully boot. After about 20 seconds the braille display will say "Starting" for about 10 seconds. It will then go blank for about 20 seconds, and eventually say "Home screen 3".

The Home Screen

The home screen contains a set of shortcuts to commonly used apps. There are a few ways to navigate to them. Chord-45 can be used to sequentially tab through the list. You can also use the Forward button (to the right of the braille display) and the Backward button (to the left of the braille display) to move in either direction through the list.

Chord-s allows you to quickly go directly to some of the important Android screens. For example, if you type w after typing Chord-s you will be taken to the Wi-Fi settings screen.

If you want to open a specific app (like the NBP Editor) then navigate to its shortcut and press either the Center button (in the middle of the square pad) or the Enter key (Dot 8) to open it.

If you open the "Apps" icon, it will take you to a screen containing an alphabetically sorted list of all of the apps on the B2G.

We recommend that you review the text version of the User Interface Manual that is in the B2G by typing Chord-h. You can also read an HTML version that's on the web by typing Chord-h together with dots 7 and 8.

Don't be afraid to explore. You can always type Chord-z to escape back out of any location, and you can also type Chord-123456 to go back to the home screen.

When the B2G is running, then:

Saving Power

  • Turning the Power Switch off (pull toward the front) puts the system to sleep. The braille on the display will go down to save power.
  • Turning it back on (push toward the back) wakes the system up to where you were before.

Powering Down

To shut down the B2G, type Chord-p. You will get a prompt that says "Power off". Press the Center button (in the middle of the square pad) to confirm. The braille display will then say "Cancel". Use the Forward button (to the right of the braille display) or Chord-45 to navigate to "OK", and then press the Center button. The braille display will then say "Power off" one more time, and then, after a few seconds, you will feel a vibration and the B2G will be shut down.

Customer Support

National Braille Press will be regularly adding information to our B2G web site:


which includes free apps that you can download, answers to frequently asked questions, and, eventually, a forum for customers.

NBP has a YouTube channel that may be helpful for you to listen to. It has some videos on how to perform specific tasks. More will be added soon. Its link is:


We provide customer support for questions that may arise. It may be reached by phone at 617-266-6160 x520.

You can reread this guide right on the B2G itself. Type Chord-q for a text copy that's in the B2G, or type Chord-q together with dots 7 and 8 for an HTML copy that's on the web.