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5 Tips and Tricks Every Android User Should Know

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No matter if you are new to the Android platform or have been with it since the “Cupcake” (Android’s first operating version) days, we think you’ll learn something new from our list of tips and tricks! One major factor to consider as you dive into this article is that the Android platform is WAY more customizable than Apple’s iOs counterpart. So if you like to tweak your system to perfection, you’ve made a great choice for your mobile device. And others seem to agree. As of 2014, Google’s Android platform surpassed Apple’s iOS and currently holds 80% of the global marketshare.

As we go through these tips, keep in mind that each version of Android is slightly different, so you may have to browse through your device to find a certain feature or setting. Let’s start with battery life.

1. Conserve Battery Life

We consider battery life to the most important tip to consider for obvious reasons. Without a charge, your phone is nothing but a pricey paperweight (or projectile, depending upon the current need for a working phone). Android devices are known for fantastic battery longevity, but there are some tricks you can employ to help conserve your battery. The first feature of note is to simply adjust your screen brightness. Go to Settings → Display → Brightness and from there you can properly adjust your screen’s brightness to its lowest setting that still provides great usability.

Another tip to saving your battery is to engage the “Screen timeout” feature. This feature will automatically put your phone to sleep once you stop using it. We recommend setting your screen to timeout between one and two minutes after you stop interacting with it. In the case of an emergency, always carry a portable charger to make sure you aren’t left stranded with a dead device.
(See Also: 4 Simple Ways to Extend Your Phone’s Battery Life)

2. Snap a Screenshot

It’s pretty easy to take a screenshot on an iPhone (pressing and holding the Home and Sleep/Wake button does the job) and it’s just as easy on an Android device! All you have to do is press the power and “volume down” buttons simultaneously and your screen will be captured to your photo library. Give it a shot. This is a fun and easy way to share directions, hilarious texting autocorrects, or contact information

3. Keep a Watchful Eye on Your Data

Nowadays, most smartphones come with a mandatory (but usually limited) data plan. As new streaming options like Netflix and Spotify become more popular, blowing through your allotted data can be very easy to accomplish. To avoid a huge cell phone bill at the of month, go to Settings → Data Usage. Here you can set your data limits, alerts, and billing cycle. You can also get a pulse on how much data you have used for the month, along with which apps hog the most data. When at home or places with Wifi, always make sure to connect to reduce your data usage.

4. Give Out a Wifi Code Without Your Password

That’s right. When you have friends and family over to your house begging for a wifi code, you don’t have to give up your precious password. Use this site to generate a QR code that is specific to your WiFi network. All you need is your wireless network name, password, and network type. Print out the QR code and stick it on your refrigerator. To scan the QR code, we recommend installing the QR Code Reader App from the Google Play store. Your guests can now quickly access your Wifi without you having to disclose your password info!

5. Block Unwanted Contacts

Do you have someone that just keeps calling you whom you wish would just knock it off? Luckily, there’s a way to silence them. In the Contacts app, find the person you are needing to ignore, select their contact name, then tap “edit”. If your Android device runs on version 5.0 or newer, tap the menu in the top right corner and select “All Calls to Voicemail”. In other Android versions, simply scroll down to “Additional Info” and follow the same steps as above. Now any calls from that individual will be directed straight to voicemail where you can better manage your options for when to respond.

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