Android has finally got a proper alternative to Apple's AirDrop. With a few touches, Nearby Share lets you send files, links, and even tweets to Android, Windows, macOS, ChromeOS, or Linux. But AirDrop has not been without its share of issues, and thankfully, Google has learned from them.
Have you ever accidentally dismissed an important notification? Realized you didn't mean to delete an alert after hitting "Clear all?" Instead of pulling out your hair, know you can see the alert again — at least, a portion of it.
In the past, if you upgraded to a new Galaxy or if you had to factory reset your existing one to fix an issue, you had to restore your home screen layout manually. Your wallpaper, widgets, icon placement, and launcher settings were all dependent on you to be put back in their place. Thankfully, this isn't an issue anymore.
If your phone has an A/B partition layout, there are two virtual hard drives that each contain a copy of Android. After every restart, it picks a partition to boot from, then the other lays idle. The idle partition can be overwritten with a new copy of the OS and it won't affect the active one. So the next time you reboot, it just switches partitions and it's as if you updated instantly.
If you're using a VPN app to block ads or secure your Galaxy's internet connection, Samsung has decided you need yet another non-dismissible notification from One UI to tell you about it. Not just a status bar indicator like Bluetooth or Wi-Fi, but a full-size alert that can't be dismissed. The entire time your always-on VPN is running.
Not every app is designed well. With nearly 3 million apps on the Play Store and countless more that you can sideload from other sources, there are bound to be a few stinkers. And many of them do a terrible job using RAM.
As phones' screens get closer to seven inches, now is the perfect time to take advantage of Android's split-screen mode. This feature has available since Android 7.0 Nougat and allows you to divide the screen into two halves, with a different app on each side.
An unfortunate byproduct of Samsung's One UI version of Android is redundancy, where you have the Google/AOSP way of doing things mixed with Samsung's methods at the same time.
You don't have to see every app installed on your phone if you don't want to. Samsung One UI makes it easy to hide apps from your Samsung Galaxy's home screen, app tray, and search tool, whether you want to declutter, simplify things, or keep other people from seeing some of the apps you use.
The gesture navigation introduced with Android 10 worked wonders by giving you more of your screen and less tapping. Android 11 offers the option to fine-tune the back gesture sensitivity for your screen's left and right sides. However, the issue still stands for people who like to use the left swipe menu within apps to open hamburger style menus.
In Android 11, music player controls have been moved from the notification tray to the Quick Settings. The change frees up space for the new Conversations notification section. It also adds media output controls, making it possible to switch from your phone speakers to a Bluetooth device with only two taps.
Samsung's stock Galaxy Themes system leaves much to be desired with its restrictive and expensive theme packs. Back in the day, the gold standard for Android theming was CyanogenMod Theme Engine. And while it no longer exists, a successor has emerged to fill the void.
Samsung uses their own SamsungOne font for their Galaxy lineup. But if you're coming from an iPhone or another Android device, you might not love it. With the help of this mod, however, you're sure to find a font that's right for you.
No matter how many camera improvements a phone adds, you're always better off using manual mode. Known as "Pro Mode" on the Galaxy S20, this feature can remove Samsung's pre- and post-processing from photos, putting you in total control.
If you have a OnePlus phone with an in-display fingerprint scanner like the 6T or 7 Pro, the "Quick launch" feature can put a variety of app shortcuts right on your lock screen for easy access. For example, you could use the "My apps" shortcut for the Play Store to check for your app updates in an instant.
It's nice having a dark theme on Android 10 and One UI 2, but setting it on a schedule takes it a step further. Imagine the light theme turning on every morning, and the dark theme taking over after sunset — all automatically. It sounds pretty simple, but it's one of those things you wouldn't know you need until you try it.
For audiophiles, few smartphones come close to LG flagship devices. With either the latest G series or V series phone, you can be sure you're getting the best audio experience of any smartphone thanks to Quad DACs and headphone jacks. And with some tinkering, you can make this experience even better.
Samsung put some of the industry's most advanced camera tech in the Galaxy S20 series. However, their image processing still lags behind the Google Camera app found on Pixel phones, so the end result is good but not great. Luckily, you can install a mod to pair that beastly hardware with arguably the best camera software.
On stock Android 9 and 10, it is easier than ever to take a screenshot and quickly edit the captured image. However, the downside to that convenience has manifested itself in a heads-up notification that can also get in the way.
The new navigation gestures in Android 10 let you ditch the three buttons along the bottom edge for a truly full screen experience. In the buttons' place, you now get an inconspicuous little line, but even that can be hidden with a setting in One UI 2.