General tips and tricks

AntEater [A]
Reputation: 39
September 30th  2014 12:31
Essential tips and tricks for Android users

With more than 3 billion users, the Android OS has emerged as the most popular platform for mobile gadgets. But most of us just manage to scuff its surface and are not able to use this operating system perfectly because of our lack of knowledge of its full potential. There are many kinds of exciting things that your Android is able to do, and this is the reason why we have put together some helpful Android tips and tricks that will enable you to enjoy your phone even better.

Tip No. 1
After the Android 4.1 Jelly Bean was launched (and the KitKat updates later on), Google Now became very popular among the Android users in a very big way. You need to check out its outstanding features, if you haven’t used it. It provides helpful information on various topics like travel, weather and sports scores and also enables you to gain access to a cards based interface.

Tip No. 2
You can make your Android experience much better by arranging all your downloaded apps and their icons in folders. You need to do this for easier viewing and accessibility. Just press and hold on a selected app and drop it on another to group the apps into a folder. Then, you can drop more apps into the folder. Rename the app to something more fitting if the default is not quite right. To make them look more attractive, you may choose to customize your folders.

Tip No. 3
A very big problem that your communication device may face is the danger of being affected with a virus. The virus has the potential to make your device slow or even erase all your data. The installation and use of antivirus apps is very easy with the Android platform. Numerous antivirus programs are now available in the Google Play store and these provide maximum security for you device.

Tip No. 4
If your child likes to play around with your Android tablet, you may to filter what he or she can access. Use the Restricted Profiles. You can decide if the user of the profile can use the Google Play Store for adding new apps and which applications are available for the profile.

Tip No. 5
When you are using an Android device, you need to adjust just a few settings in order to ensure that your device’s battery life is extended by a good percentage. Remember to switch off data when you are not using it, adjusting screen brightness, and disable the apps not being used to preserve battery and extend its life significantly. Download a battery saving application from the Google Play Store to help you manage your battery usage.

Tip No. 6
Google Keep is an easy to use tool and it helps you stay organized. Use it to take notes, including images, text or voice recordings, to help you remember things. You can access your reminders and notes on all of your Android devices since it is synced to your Google Account.

Tip No. 7
Do you use emoji to communicate various feelings that are not offered by traditional emoticons? The emoji keyboard is automatically available to you if you’re using Android 4.3 or higher. You just need to press and hold the spacebar on the keyboard and select the Emoji input.

Tip No. 8
A decent pair of headphones is sometimes enough to get good sound from your device, but you can still improve on it with an equalizer app. Music Equalizer, which is available in the Google Play Store, is the best one that you can get for free. You can customize it in your own way and it has dedicated bass and virtualizer knobs.

Tip No. 9
You do not want to exceed limits if you have a limited data plan, and end up with extra charges. Luckily, Android has a great Data usage feature, which enables you to find out how much data has been consumed during a certain span of time. All you need to do is to go to Data usage in your device’s Settings menu. You can opt to get alerts when you are approaching your data cap, and set your billing interval.

Tip No. 10
If you leave your phone in public accidentally, there’s no guarantee that you will ever see your phone again. But it is possible for you to increase the chances of getting it back by editing the security settings. First go to Settings, then go to Security, and then Owner Info. Find the little box where you can type in contact information that will show up on the lock screen. Thus, if an honest person finds it, it would be easier to return the device to you.

Tip No. 11
If the Swipe Gesture is not pre-installed on your phone, then you can download it for free from the Google Play Store. You have the choice to download a third-party alternative like Swift Key or the popular Google Keyboard. Swipe gesture typing is a bit hard at first, but you can definitely give it a try as it proves to be much faster and easier than tapping buttons one by one. You will be able to swipe or slide your finder around the keyboard to get the letters needed for what you are typing. This excellent feature also aids you to swipe through the shift and symbol keys for easy punctuation and caps.

Tip No. 12
These days most applications, including Android-based phones are built around Google accounts. The Android platform provides you with the ability of adding more than one Google based account. Just go through your device settings and tap Add a New Account which will enable you to create multiple accounts on a single device.

Tip No. 13
It is possible to set your favorite contacts on Android very easily. All you need to do is to press and hold an empty space on the home screen. A menu will pop up after this. Go to Shortcuts - Contact, and then just scroll through your contact list till you find the person whom you like to add. Thus, you will find it a lot quicker to call your friend, family member or favorite food joint.

Tip No. 14
Irrespective of its capacity, every Android phone is subject to upgrades and you will also get system upgrades if you have invested in an Android device. Your device will be a bit more efficient than before after each upgrade. Choose when and what you like to update. Just go to Settings - About phone/tablet, then tap on System Updates and choose Check Now.

Tip No. 15
Autocorrect is a very irritating feature. Luckily, you can avoid the autocorrect function on a device running Android, so that you are able to type without being bothered by the autocorrect, and the often incorrect words it uses. All you need to do is go to Settings, then choose Language & Input, then tap on Settings, and then turn off Autocorrect.

Tip No. 16
You can find the option Connect Storage to PC by plugging the phone to a computer using a USB cable. Selecting this option, you will be able to swap files between your computer and phone easily. There is no need to take out the memory card each time you need to add, delete or transfer any file on your phone.

Tip No. 17
Animations can slow down your phone at times, and the good news is that, to make your phone run smoother, they can be disabled quite easily. You have to go to Settings, and tap Developer Options. Next go to Window animation scale, Transition animation scale, and Animator duration scale, and disable all of them.

Tip No. 18
If you are using Jelly Bean, you can review and manage all the photos on your device easily. Just go to the camera application and tap on the bottom right-hand corner in order to view the most recently taken picture. You can view pictures taken previously by swiping left and right. You can get a faster review of the pictures which are lined up if you pinch inwards. Also, you can delete the pictures that you do not want by swiping up.

Tip No. 19
Different platforms have require different methods to take a screen shot. A lot of people get confused when they attempt to do this simple task. With Ice Cream Sandwich or Jelly Bean, you just need to press the Volume Down key and the Power button simultaneously and hold till the shutter clicks. An image should be stored to the gallery automatically. For some devices with KitKat, you need to press the Power button and Home button simultaneously to take a screenshot.

Tip No. 20
This trick of personalized voice recognition is not familiar to many people, but it can make your life much easier. Go to “Language and input” section and there you will find “voice search”. The learning process is activated after this and you alone can command your phone to do the task that you ask it, and no one else can take advantage of this feature from your phone.

Tip No. 21
If you are the proud owner of an Android phone, you may use these things called “launchers,” which are actually applications that let make edits to your phone’s home screen. Nova Launcher is probably the most popular one, as it allows you to modify almost everything you may think of. There are other launchers out there too, and you can take time to decide which one you prefer the most. These apps can make your phone perform much faster than it would with the clumpy interfaces that Samsung and HTC or other phone manufactures give them.

Tip No. 22
While you may be satisfied to unlock your phone with the swiping action, there are also other options which you will be able to select from the settings of your security menu like using a PIN or password for additional security and the face unlock.

Tip No. 23
Android requires more horsepower and user tweaking in order to run smoothly. You would not be able to do much about upgrading your phone or tablet’s processor, but you can of course take your time to optimize what you already have. Android devices need to be tuned up frequently much like a PC. There are some apps that can help you in this, such as the All-In-One Toolbox. You can do stuff like deleting unused and old apps, and removing the widgets that you never use. To do this you have to go to Settings - Apps - Running, and end anything manually that uses up too much memory.

There is an increasing demand of Android devices, in spite of different hosting platforms crowding the markets and with good reason. Android is loaded with features and flexibility that make it user friendly. Many apps are available in the Google Play store that lets you maximize the use of your phone, and even allow you to customize it so it is uniquely your own.

Note that some functionalities may have to be activated using different steps than what is stated in the tips mentioned. This depends on what device you are using. Phone and tablet manufacturers also incorporate their own settings and features, so if the tip is not working for you, please refer to your device’s manual.

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