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Ten secret Android tricks you didn’t know existed

Android vs iOS: a battle that has been going on for years and will continue to rage for a long time. Every user has its (justified) reasons for choosing certain software. Even though it often has more to offer than you initially thought.

Despite the fact that the majority of smartphone users enjoy Android, not everyone is yet so far advanced that they know all the functionalities. Fortunately, your friends at WANT are here to help you with that.

Android: 10 secret features

Android, as mentioned, has a lot of nice features, but there are some that not every user knows about yet. The following 10 will help you get even more out of your smartphone:

#1 Multitasking for life

People who want to multitask are absolutely fine with an Android smartphone. Since Android 7.0 Nougat, it is possible to display two apps on your phone at the same time. For example, you can have your mail app open on one part of the screen and Google on the other. So via this way you can always find the right words to make your point. Or how about staying in touch with your friends via WhatsApp, while watching a movie on YouTube. The real multitasker will be fine with Google’s software.

#2 Always be found

People walking around with an iPhone often hear you talk about the Find My network. To be honest, the system does work very well and it’s nice that you can always find the location of your phone. Although that’s not to say that people with Android smartphones can’t get this done.

Those who want to find the location of their Android device can simply go to Google. There you then type in the search bar the text Where is my smartphone. You will then see a pop-up in the search results with the text Find my phone. Press that button and you’ll enter Google’s version of the Find My Network. Not only will you find the location of your smartphone here, but you can also have it play a sound or erase it in case you really have lost it. Perfect!

OnePlus 10 ProSecond generation Hasselblad (Image: Mark Hofman / WANT)

#3 Android: everything under control

It is logically possible to adjust the volume of your smartphone in Android. It is possible to determine how loud the media is played and how loud notifications come in. But did you know that you can also set all this in advance, so that you don’t get any unwanted surprises?

In Android it is possible to set the volume of your alarm clock, notifications and media separately. You do this by going to Settings -> Sounds -> Volume on your smartphone.

#4 Using smartphone with your…mouse?

Should you find yourself in the unique situation where you feel the need to control your smartphone with a mouse, you can. For example, a good example is when the touchscreen is broken and you want to quickly back up your Android device. At least with the right USB-OTG cable, you’ll manage to pair your phone with a mouse. Party time! Just make sure you use a USB mouse.

#5 Lock up in your smartphone

I’m sure there have been times when you’ve had to borrow your phone for a very short time. Now, with friends and family, of course, that’s not a big deal. But is it someone you know less well, but still want to help? Then it is useful to make use of the Screen Pinning option. This makes it possible to lock someone in an app, so he or she does not snoop around in your personal files.

To turn this on, go to Settings and choose Biometrics and Security. Then choose the Pinning windows option to pin a particular application. You can then use your PIN to unlock the window again.

ASUS ROG Phone 5 reviewNo need for a console anymore! (Image: Mark Hofman / WANT)

#6 Android: two tabs in Chrome

Google Chrome is one of the most used browsers on Android. Yet a lot of people don’t know that you can also use it for multitasking. For example, just like you can open two different apps, it is possible to open two different tabs. You do that by opening the tabs section in the app, holding it down and choosing Open in other window.

#7 Customize default apps

Android was long known as the only smartphone operating system where consumers had free choice. That way you weren’t stuck with the default browser, the default weather app and the default email service. Nowadays, Apple offers this option with iOS, although this does not mean that Android’s advantage is gone. It is still possible to customize default apps.

Consumers can go to Settings for this and then select Apps. If you choose a particular app to set as “default”, it can be done through the same window. Ideal!

#8 Guest mode for your smartphone

In this list there was already a small tip for when you lend your Android smartphone. This option is obviously useful, but only when this happens for a short time. If you want to help out a friend or family member by letting them borrow your entire smartphone for a while, it’s a good idea to use a guest account.

Through this way it is possible for someone to just get on with your phone, without your data and files crossing with each other. Contacts, photos and applications: they all just stay as they were.

Xiaomi 12 ProThe 12 Pro (Image: Mark Hofman / WANT)

#9 Android: use with one hand

Android smartphones are getting bigger and bigger these days, so we can hardly imagine it. But should you like to control your phone with just one hand, it is possible. Only typing texts has become a bit tricky. Therefore, Google has built a handy functionality into Android that makes it possible to do this. When you use Gboard, Google’s own keyboard, you can activate the one-handed mode in the settings.

#10 Smart Lock

Android smartphones are sometimes smarter than you think. For example, it’s possible to always lock your phone with a password, fingerprint or face, but you can override that security in certain locations. For example, it’s possible to select your home address as a so-called safe haven, which means you don’t need a fingerprint or password here. Smart Lock, Google calls it. The functionality is under the heading Security in the Settings.

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