For the majority of phones, Android's volume rocker is wrong. A large vocal part of the Android community wishes the volume buttons' default control was the media volume, not the ringer. Although the Galaxy Note 9 is in the "wrong" camp, Samsung has included multiple ways to change it.
For some, the Galaxy Note 9's volume rocker doesn't have enough steps between silent and max volume. We all have different preferences for volume, and a higher number of steps would equal to more precise volume control. Good thing we can at least adjust this for the media volume.
One option you won't find buried in the Galaxy Note 9's Settings is the ability to return the navigation bar to black. Samsung changed the default color to white with the Note 8, removing any ability to bring the black color back. But thanks to a neat app, Note 9 users can do it themselves.
Late last year, we got a little surprise from Razer. The gaming company released its first smartphone, and as expected, it targeted gamers. Branded as a gaming phone, it started a trend which several others companies followed soon after, including ASUS, Xiaomi, and even Samsung. So as you can imagine, many are excited about its successor.
After the first image leaked of the upcoming successor to the Razer Phone, many were taken aback by its design, specifically how familiar it was. Last year's Razer already stood out with its boxy design and large bezels, and many thought the successor would change this. It didn't. But what if the reason for the familiar form factor is a project they teased earlier in the year?
If you haven't heard, another big OEM has decided to drop the headphone jack. OnePlus, the hero of the people, has just announced that the OnePlus 6T will not have the popular port. With this decision, audiophiles and others are limited to just three big-name options.
Just because Developer Options is hidden by default doesn't mean you shouldn't unlock it. While for rooters its benefit are obvious, even for the average user it opens the door for tools which enhance your experience. From animation speed to improving gaming graphics, Developer Options has something for everyone.
Earlier this year, Samsung released the Galaxy J3 and J7 to select markets. These two devices are the latest in the J series, Samsung's super-budget series that tries to rewrite what it means to be a budget phone. Now, starting September 14th, you will be able to get them GSM unlocked.
Thanks to Android Pie's gesture controls, features like split screen mode now take several additional steps to activate. This change is due to the revamped navigation bar which removed the recents apps button. Luckily, we can still change it back.
Despite a very vocal distaste for Bixby, Samsung continues to push their voice assistant on customers. For many, the button is not only a waste, but placed perfectly for accidental presses. While it appears Samsung has no intention of giving up on Bixby, with the help of an excellent app, you can get rid of it yourself.
Samsung makes more than just the Galaxy S and Note series. With a large portion of the world not able to afford phones with flagship specs, Samsung makes several different series that focus on price. The latest is the Galaxy A6, a budget option with a flagship feature.
Samsung Experience isn't for everyone. While it's a far cry from the TouchWiz days, it is still too heavy of a skin for Android purists. But you shouldn't let that dissuade you from a powerful device that checks nearly all other boxes — there are ways to make the Galaxy Note 9's software look and feel almost exactly like stock.
Xiaomi made a new phone with their sights set on picking up some ex OnePlus users. As a result, the Pocophone F1, or just Poco in some markets, is quite unlike most other Xiaomi phones. While you can't buy the F1 in stores in the US, you can get its home screen app on almost any phone right now.
Starting November 1, 2018, Google will require that all new apps and updates to existing apps target Android 8.0 Oreo or higher. This move means the developers behind many of your favorite apps are now scrambling to get their software modernized, while others are considering abandoning outdated apps altogether.
After months passed since Google first announced the feature, YouTube's dark mode has finally reached the Android masses. Sure, it just changes some colors, but it has been a highly sought-after feature since iPhone users got it months ago.
Ever-shrinking bezels and disappearing hardware buttons make for good looking phones, but they also increase the need for gesture controls. Android Pie comes with seven new swipe gestures, but if you don't have the update yet (or find its default gesture options to be lacking), you should take a look at the Microsoft Launcher.
These days, it seems new phones get announced every other week. We've grown accustomed to glossing over the specs, looking at some press renders, then moving on to check out the next phone. If you had done this in September 2008, you might have overlooked what would become one of the most important phones of all time.
All phones (yes, iPhones too) slow down over time. As your device gets bogged down by various apps and you begin to run out of storage, it's just an inevitability. That doesn't make it any less frustrating ... I mean, is there anything more annoying than a slow phone? My answer: No. Of course not. It's the single most annoying thing ever.
When BlackBerry first announced the KEY2 back in June, the biggest gripe we heard was about the price. It was reasonable criticism, as BlackBerry was asking a lot of its consumers at $650. Knowing this, BlackBerry went back, made some downgrades, and cut the price, creating the KEY2 LE.
When rumors first emerged of Sony's Xperia XZ3, many of us wondered why. With the Xperia XZ2 just releasing in April of this year, why is Sony already releasing its successor? But now that it is officially announced, it makes a bit more sense, as what Sony is calling the XZ3 is actually more like the XZ2S.
Google Photos integrates with Google's ecosystem to bring you awesome features like the ability to identify landmarks, track down products you've photographed, and so much more. Now, if you need to translate foreign words in any of your pictures, the app has you covered as well.
OnePlus will be releasing a new phone in the second half of 2018, specifically, an upgrade to their T-series. Over the past two years, #T versions have come out about five months after their predecessors and have included small updates that fix any problems from the previous OnePlus device. While we do know a bit about OnePlus 6T, what it could be is much more exciting.
Think back to when you last wanted to transfer some music or videos to your friend's smartphone and how difficult and slow it was. As powerful as our phones are, the default file sharing options are limited. There are, fortunately, some better options which make moving files easy, secure, and painless.
What you see when you open the Play Store is completely dependent on your country settings. Search results and top charts are specific to each region and there are lots of popular apps and games that simply won't show up unless your Play Store country matches up.
With Android Pie, Google added a genuinely useful feature for Pixels called App Suggestions, which uses AI to predict the apps you might want to use next. These show up at the top of your app drawer and in the new dock in the revamped multitasking UI for quick access. But here's the trouble: Muscle memory is a thing.
As a longtime Android user, one of the changes I was most excited about with Android Pie was the fact that the volume rocker finally controls media volume by default. However, the new way isn't ideal for everyone, but thankfully, there's an app that can change it back.
With all Android updates, there's a considerable wait before most phones get the new version, and Android Pie is no different. Until then, most of us are stuck just looking at videos of the newest update. Well thanks to developer Trey Dev, we can enjoy the new notification shade and Quick Settings menu while we wait.
Fortnite's long awaited arrival on Android has ramped up excitement among gamers who are installing the beta version in astounding numbers. With so many midrange and budget devices running Android, however, it's important to stay on top of your device's performance to ensure smooth and uninterrupted gameplay.
With every new Android update, hidden features are lurking under the surface. Google hides these options to prevent unnecessary tinkering by average users, leaving them in place for power users to discover. These secrets range from silly to really useful, with the latter opening up new ways to manage your phone.
Samsung emphasized its goal of a streamlined user experience with the unveiling of the Galaxy Note 9, highlighting the flagship's capabilities of seamlessly connecting with other devices. The Note 9's new and improved DeX mode makes it easier than ever to interface with a slew of devices like the Galaxy Tab S4 and a wide array of displays and monitors.
If you've upgraded your phone to Android 9.0 Pie, you might notice some intermittent problems with your internet connection. That's because "Turn On Wi-Fi Automatically," while available with Android Oreo on select phones, is now enabled by default on all phones running Android Pie. If your Essential or OnePlus device is acting up, you'll want to check this out.
Alongside its Galaxy Note 9 announcement at Unpacked this year, Samsung confirmed that Fortnite would initially launch on Android as a Galaxy-exclusive. But thanks to Android's awesome development scene, this didn't last long at all — you can run Fortnite on any compatible Android device right now.
Time to play — Fortnite is now officially available on Android. However, the game won't be available across the Android ecosystem right away. Fortnite Battle Royale launches on Samsung devices first. That means if you have a Galaxy S7, S8, S9, Note 8, Tab 3, or Tab 4, you can download the game right now.
| Updated September 10, 2018 with new phones. When will my phone get Android Pie? For the first time since Android's inception, this question shouldn't have an answer that lets you down. That's because Android Oreo introduced Project Treble, a new low-level arrangement that makes updating a lot easier. So with Pie, it's not if your phone will get it, but when.
Is your smartphone taking over your life? Do you need help putting your Pixel down at night? Well, update to Android Pie! Android 9.0 comes with Digital Wellbeing, a new tool to both help you understand your smartphone habits and perhaps step away from the apps, games, and notifications every now and then.
It's a sad day for one of the most beloved series of Android phones. For the first time since 2009, there's a new version of Android, but it's not being made available to Google's own Nexus devices.
For the first time since its inception, the famously hidden System UI Tuner has to be unlocked in a new way. No longer can you long-press the gear icon (found in Quick Settings) until it spins and reveals the hidden settings option. With Android 9.0 Pie, there's a new workaround to reveal the menu.
The famous Flappy Bird (technically Flappy Droid) game is still around in Android 9.0 Pie. First introduced in 5.0 Lollipop, the game was originally the version number easter egg for the new Android update. But after Android Marshmallow, Google began to hide it from its usual location, and Pie continues this tradition.
With the release of Android 9.0 Pie, Google's focusing on digital health. Digital Wellbeing is a new set of features designed to help you curb your own smartphone addiction. Starting now, the beta version is available, and Google's looking for testers.
In 2018, Motorola is no longer the same brand that introduced the world to the Motorola Droid. The once iconic company is now part of the "Others" group, scrambling for fifth place. The newly-announced Moto Z3 perfectly embodies their current state with competitive specs ... if it came out last year.