Android How-Tos

How To: The Fastest Way to Check for Galaxy Store App Updates on Your Samsung Device

If you have a Samsung device, you probably know the hassle of dealing with both the Galaxy Store and the Google Play Store at the same time for apps. Samsung's offering is forced onto you whether you like it or not; however, it's the only way to officially receive essential updates for your Samsung apps. The good news? You can keep on top of these updates with a super simple trick.

How To: Get Android 11's New Media Controls on Any Phone

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.

How To: Customize Your OnePlus 7 or 7T Pro's Caller ID Screen with an Updated Design

When you receive a call on your phone, you likely don't think twice about the design when the notification pops up. Whatever the default UI is, that's what works best since there aren't any other choices to pick from. At least, that's how things used to be in the past — we're starting to see some new OnePlus mods that allow you to expand on it.

How To: Get Completely Custom Themes for Any Samsung Galaxy Using Hex Installer

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.

How To: Disable the Pull-Down Quick Settings Menu on Your Pixel 4's Lock Screen

On Android, there is a vulnerability that Google doesn't seem to want to fix — anyone can open the Quick Settings panel on your lock screen. GPS, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth, all toggles accessible in this menu, are vital tools for locating your phone in case it is ever stolen. But thanks to Xposed, you can eliminate this potential risk.

How To: Manually Switch to a Different LTE Band on Any Samsung Galaxy Phone

Your Galaxy uses information from your SIM card to communicate with nearby towers and facilitate a connection. Which LTE bands you are assigned depends on a number of factors, including available bandwidth and your device's supported signals. But if speeds aren't great on your auto-selected tower, you can improve things by manually choosing a band.

How To: Find Temporarily Free Apps & Games on the Google Play Store

Software takes time to create, and time is money, so a lot of great apps aren't free. But to generate interest, some developers will make their paid apps free for a limited time. The potential for a long-term increase in daily active users more than offsets the short-term lost revenue. So for us end users, the trick is knowing when these sales are going on.

How To: Enable 2-Button Navigation on the Pixel 4

There was a period when Google knew they were switching to gesture navigation, but felt users weren't quite ready for it. The result was Android 9's two-button nav bar that you could both tap and swipe. Android 10 has since brought full-on gestures, and that's the version the Pixel 4 shipped with, so it never had that quirky, fun two-button setup. But you can bring it back, so to speak.

How To: Make Any App Work with OnePlus' Parallel Apps Feature

OnePlus offers a variety of features that you don't get with some other Android phones. Parallel Apps is one of those standout extras you didn't know you might enjoy until you've tried it. It allows you to clone compatible apps installed on your device, which means you can use the same app with two different accounts, for example.

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