950 million devices run on Android, and although it is the most versatile OS, some users might have no clue how to modify their experience using great tools. You can do everything on Android from changing the stock firmware, to turning your phone into a dedicated gaming device. Here are 10 things you didn’t know you could do on Android:
Enable Typing by Swiping
Some of you might hate typing by tapping your keyboard and learning to swipe text is very easy and once you have the hang of things, becomes a faster way to type. The best way to get this going on your Android device is to download the default Google keyboard that is available through the Google Play Store. Most Android devices have keyboards that support swipe, to make this more universal, I would recommend getting the Google keyboard.
Change your launcher
Did you know that you Android device is actually running a specific launcher that can be changed anytime you want? If you are tired of Samsung’s TouchWiz, or HTC’s Sense, then just hit up the Play store and find a new one. Most of these third party launchers are free, but the paid ones are better and pack more features into the overall design. The first thing you would want to do is just go ahead and search “launcher” on the Play Store. From there go through the list of results and find one that you like.
Facial Recognition Lock
Instead of having to use a pattern or a pin code to unlock your phone, you can just set up facial lock under the device’s security settings
Turn your phone into a gaming device
Depending on your device, there are multiple first and third-party accessories that you can pick up that will extend the gaming experience a bit further. I am talking about external controllers. You can pick up the official Samsung Gamepad from the Samsung Store. It will mount your phone into a dock and eliminate the touch screen controls for the game that you are playing. You can even connect a DualShock 4 to your Android device
Show your contact details on your home screen
For easy access to your details like your email address, and other owner information, enable the lock screen widget to show your details. You often find this under Settings > Lock Screen > Lock screen widgets > Owner information.
Android users are lucky enough to benefit from the ability to send WhatsApp messages from their PCs. Head on over to the web version of WhatsApp and sign in by scanning a QR code using your phone. You can then send and receive messages on your web browser rather than using your phone.
Find the hidden mini game/animation
This is a neat little trick that is hidden in every version of Android. Head on over to Settings > About Device and look for the tab that shows your device information. Tap on Android version and keep tapping on it until the screen changes and takes you to either a mini game, or a logo. This isn’t a particularly useful feature, but it’s fun to play around with especially if you have Android Lollipop running on your device, as it contains a hidden Flappy Bird game
Cast your screen
Because of Android’s open-source OS, you can basically connect to anything on the same network and send media to that device. Say you have a smart TV that is connected via Wi-Fi, all you need to do is load up a song, photo, or video, and look for the cast icon that looks like a block with Wi-Fi bars inside of it. You will now connect your Android device to the TV or Wi-Fi enabled home entertainment device and can play media through it.
Tape Measure and Level Tool
The iPhone has a built-in level tool, but if you’re an Android user you don’t have to feel left out because the Google Play Store has everything. You can turn your Android device into both a measuring tape and a level by downloading the Smart Tools App, or the free version of Measure Tool App.
You can connect to other Android devices via NFC (Near Field Communication). Most Android devices have this built-in and all you need to do is enable it and touch the two devices together to send media like photos, contacts, music, and pictures.
So there you have 10 things that you didn’t know you could do with your Android. We have so much more that will put together in the coming weeks. Android is such a big OS and because it is so versatile, it allows for lots of tweaking and adding of third part features.