10 Things You Didn’t Know Your Android Could Do
1. Say goodbye to “you’re out of storage”.
You love taking photos, but hate that pesky “you’re out of storage” message. Thankfully, Android automatically organises and backs up your photos with Google Photos. You get unlimited, high-quality storage for free, meaning you’ll never have to delete a photo again.
To turn on back up, open up Google Photos > Menu > Settings > Back up & sync and switch it on.
2. Turn your photos into works of art.
Google Photos automatically creates memories from the photos taken on your phone.
The “Assistant” will turn your photos into panoramas, animations, stories, and collages. It will also automatically enhance your photos even before you upload them to Instagram.
To find the Assistant feature, just swipe left on the screen in Google Photos.
3. Keep all of your music in one place.
With Google Play Music, you can upload 50,000 songs from your personal music collection completely free. You no longer need to worry about how much storage your favourite album takes up on your phone.
4. Make it personal.
With Android, you can customise your homescreen however you like. You can choose from a pile of widgets and personalised layouts to quickly fire up your music, check your Inbox or catch up on the latest news.
Just long-press on your homescreen to get started.
5. Get your phone to automatically lock based on where you are.
Smart Lock automatically removes your phone’s lock screen when you’re at locations you trust, like home. You can also set your device to lock itself again when you step away from it, even in your trusted locations. We’re talking actual wizardry right here.
If you’ve got Android Lollipop, enable this feature at Settings > Security > Smart Lock> Trusted places.
6. Track down your phone if you lose it.
That dreaded moment you realise your phone is missing. We’ve all been there.
Android Device Manager can help you track it down, remotely delete information on it, lock it, and more. It takes a moment to set up, but it’s a life saver if you ever need it. Do it now!
Go to Settings > Security to switch it on. Then go to Settings > Security > Device Administrators and check the box next to Android Device Manager so it has the permissions it needs.
Then, if you ever lose your phone, go here to locate it.
7. Stop tapping, start swiping.
Typing is slow and annoying. Let’s not do it any more. With Android, you can drag your finger from letter to letter, and the right words will appear. Cherrio fat finger mistakes. Oh, and it’s also kinda fun.
8. Save your battery for when you need it most.
Nothing ruins your day more quickly than running out of juice. Android phones with Lollipop and above have Battery Saver Mode built in. When you’re getting low on power, it automatically kicks in, keeping you up and running as long as possible.
Battery saver mode works automatically, so it just comes on when you need it. Switch it on by going to Settings > Battery and finding Battery saver.
9. Get helpful information, right when you need it.
The Google app gives you information to help manage your day, before you even ask. It has cards on traffic before work, parcel tracking, news you’re interested in, and spots nearby to grab lunch at.
To turn on Google Now cards, go to the Google Settings app > Search & Now > Now cards > Turn Show cards on.
10. Get the power of search everywhere.
“Now on Tap” gives you the things you need, at any time, at the touch of a button.
Just long-press the “home” button on your phone – on any screen – and Android will bring up all the relevant information and actions. For example, if a friend texts you about dinner plans, Now on Tap will give you a review of the restaurant as well as booking details, directions and more.
To use it, just long-press the “home” button on your phone, no matter what app you’re in.
BONUS: Find and play Android’s secret, hidden game!
Google always includes an Easter egg or two in most of their products, and Android is no exception. To find the game, go into your system settings, select About phone(or tablet), and then tap the line labeled Android version several times in a row. When you see a large graphic appear on your screen, tap the circle part of the image about five times and then press and hold your finger to it. You’ll then be taken into an Android-themed game, with lots of obstacles to jump through and avoid. It’s seriously addictive. You’ve been warned.