12 fast fixes for common Android problems

    Confession time: I do know embarrassingly little about automobile restore, and I could not repair a misbehaving home equipment if my life relied on it (which, on no less than a pair events, it virtually has). Heck, I can barely hold a bit of wall artwork with out screwing one thing up alongside the way in which. When it involves Android telephones, although, properly — I’m virtually a modern-day mechanic.Now, hold on a sec: It is not practically as spectacular because it sounds. I haven’t got any fancy energy instruments or perhaps a pair of cool-looking coveralls with my title on ’em (not but, anyway). I’ve principally simply been utilizing and learning Android for a very long time now — since someplace within the mid-1800s, give or take — and while you pay shut sufficient consideration to one thing for a protracted sufficient interval, you begin to see the identical primary patterns popping up time and time once more.The fact is that for as “magical” as they could sometimes seem, our modern and glossy smartphones are in the end simply home equipment. And as a rule, the problems most folk have with their telephones are fairly darn constant. That means whether or not you are troubleshooting your personal machine or making an attempt to return to a struggling co-worker’s rescue, the percentages are good that your downside might be addressed with out an excessive amount of hassle.Consider this your information — a set of among the most typical complaints I hear about Android telephones and the only options I counsel in these eventualities. Apply the information to your personal ailing machine or cross it on to another person who wants it, and also you, too, can expertise the enjoyment of feeling like a mobile-tech mechanic (with or with out the coveralls).Android downside #1: Low storageAh, sure — the age-old downside of finite area. When you see a cellphone’s storage beginning to run low, simply bear in mind this catchy little adage: “Stop hoarding stuff, you unruly digital packrat.” (Okay, so possibly it wasn’t fairly as catchy as I had hoped.)In all seriousness, although, most of us actually do not want a lot saved regionally on our smartphones lately — particularly on Android, the place cloud syncing is straightforward and automatic administration is simple. Start by putting in the Google Photos app and setting it as much as again up all images and movies as they’re taken. That’ll allow you to delete the native copies (in addition to have an effective way to get to all of your reminiscences from any machine, anytime, even if you happen to lose or break your present Android cellphone), and that alone is sure to liberate tons of room.Second, set up the Files by Google app. It’ll present you all of the pointless space-takers lurking inside your cellphone’s storage — together with these now-redundant native copies of cloud-synced photographs together with junk recordsdata, duplicate recordsdata, and different simply eradicated issues — and it will offer you easy one-tap buttons to clear any of that crud away.JR Raphael/IDG
    The Files by Google app identifies areas the place you’ll be able to liberate area and offers you a fast ‘n’ simple solution to zap unneeded objects away.
    Finally, if you happen to’re utilizing one among Google’s Pixel telephones, look within the Storage part of your system settings and faucet the road labeled “Smart Storage.” There, you’ll be able to configure your cellphone to robotically take away any redundant copies of already-backed-up images and movies anytime your storage begins to get low once more.Android downside #2: Subpar staminaWe may speak about Android battery life all day, however the quickest solution to make a right away distinction in your cellphone’s longevity is to regulate your display settings.First, flip down the display’s brightness (both within the Quick Settings panel that comes up while you swipe down twice from the highest of your display or within the Display part of your system settings). The show burns by means of extra energy than anything in your machine, and the decrease you’ll be able to comfortably use it, the longer your cellphone will final with every cost. If your cellphone is working Android 9 or greater, you may also search for an Adaptive Brightness choice that’ll robotically modify the brightness degree for you based mostly in your present setting.Second, set your “Screen timeout” setting (additionally within the Display part of your system settings) to as low of a worth as you’ll be able to tolerate. The much less time your display stays on while you aren’t utilizing it, the much less pointless battery energy your cellphone will burn by means of.And third, if you happen to’ve received Android 10 or greater, look in that very same space of your system settings for the Dark Theme choice. Darker colours are inclined to devour much less energy than the brilliant hues current in most interfaces by default, so switching to the Dark Theme both on a regular basis and even simply on a sunset-to-sunrise schedule ought to lengthen your cellphone’s battery a good bit.Android downside #3: Too a lot bloatwareUnless you are utilizing Google’s Pixel telephones, your Android machine possible got here loaded with numerous junk you do not need — starting from superfluous manufacturer-provided companies (hello, Samsung!) to carrier-added crapola (to make use of the extremely technical time period). But worry not, for many of that may on the very least be hidden out of sight, if not eradicated totally.The easiest way to try this is to look within the Apps part of your system settings to seek out the entire record of put in functions. When you see an app that you do not need, faucet its title after which search for both the Uninstall button — or, if that is not current, the Disable command. You might not be capable to eliminate completely all the pieces that approach (paging Bixby…), however you can filter a good quantity of muddle.Android downside #4: A house display messFrom built-in search bars you do not use to mad information streams you’d reasonably not see, Android telephones’ residence screens are sometimes something however optimum out of the field. But you do not have to dwell with what your device-maker provides you. Android has an enormous array of third-party launchers — alternate environments that utterly change your cellphone’s inventory residence display setup and app drawer association. And there’s one thing accessible for virtually each desire and elegance of working.JR Raphael/IDG
    Third-party launchers such because the Microsoft Launcher and Niagara Launcher, seen right here, can clear up your private home display and make it custom-suited to your work type.
    Look by means of my Android launcher suggestions to seek out what’s best for you — then take a look at these Android productiveness ideas for taking advantage of your spiffy new setup.Android downside #5: A slow-running cellphoneJust like us mortals, smartphones are susceptible to slowing down over time as their digital wits turn into worn. Unlike our mushy mammal brains, although, your cellphone’s response time can really be improved.Some of the issues we simply went over, the truth is, ought to make a noticeable distinction: cleansing up your storage, uninstalling unused apps (each ones that got here pre-installed in your cellphone and ones you put in your self however not use), and making an attempt out a {custom} launcher for a extra optimum residence display setting.Beyond that, among the identical steps I describe in my Android data-saving information can carry a significant increase to your total machine pace — issues like eliminating pointless background exercise, compressing your cellular net expertise, and shifting to light-weight variations of apps. (See that article for a step-by-step breakdown in every of these areas.)And lastly, a tucked-away Android system setting might take advantage of perceptible influence of all. You’ll first must activate Android’s developer settings in your cellphone to seek out it:Open the About Phone part of your system settings and search for the road labeled “Build number.” (On Samsung telephones, you will must faucet a line labeled “Software information” earlier than you will see the “Build number” line.)
    Tap that line seven instances.
    Enter your PIN, sample, or password when prompted.
    Once that is completed, return to your essential system settings menu. On some telephones, you will see a brand new Developer Options part proper in that essential menu; on others, akin to Google’s Pixel gadgets, you will must enter the System part after which faucet “Advanced” to seek out it. However you get to it, faucet that part after which scroll down till you see the Drawing header.There, you will discover three animation-related choices: “Window animation scale,” “Transition animation scale,” and “Animator duration scale.” Tap every of these objects and alter its setting from the default “Animation scale 1x” to “Animation off.” And do not mess with anything in that Developer Options space when you’re there; it comprises some complicated stuff that is not meant for normal cellphone homeowners and will mess up your cellphone if used incorrectly.JR Raphael/IDG
    Android’s animation scale settings, hidden away within the system’s Developer Options, could make any cellphone really feel immediately sooner.
    Head again to your private home display and take a look at transferring round your cellphone — opening your app drawer, swiping down the notification panel, going out and in of apps, and so forth. Everything ought to really feel considerably snappier than it did earlier than.Android downside #6: Too a lot rotationOur telephones are designed to work in each a portrait and a panorama orientation — however typically, the sensors get slightly oversensitive and find yourself flipping between views extra usually than you’d need.As of Android 9, there’s a straightforward reply: On a Pixel cellphone or any machine whose producer hasn’t meddled with Android an excessive amount of, march into the Display part of your system settings, faucet “Advanced,” after which flip the toggle subsequent to “Auto-rotate screen” into the off place. From there on out, anytime you rotate your machine, it will not robotically change the display’s orientation and can as a substitute place a small icon within the nook of the display. You can then faucet that icon to vary the rotation or ignore it to depart it as-is.If you are utilizing a Samsung cellphone, the function curiously is not in your system settings, however yow will discover a toggle for it within the Quick Settings space that comes up while you swipe down twice from the highest of your cellphone. Look for the icon labeled “Auto rotate” and faucet it as soon as to disable it (which can change its title to “Portrait,” considerably confusingly — however that’ll do the trick).Android downside #7: Tiny textual contentStop squinting, would ya? If the phrases in your cellphone are too rattling small, head into the Accessibility part of your system settings and check out two choices: “Font size,” which can enhance textual content all all through your cellphone, and “Display size,” which can enhance the scale of all the pieces in your display.Android downside #8: Annoying notificationsWhether it is an excessively aggressive app or, ahem, an excessively aggressive texter, cease notification nuisances at their supply by urgent and holding your finger to the following undesirable alert that pops up. That’ll pull up a management panel of types that permits you to flip off the related kind of notification totally — or simply silence it in order that it nonetheless reveals up however would not actively demand your consideration.JR Raphael/IDG
    Less annoying notifications are all the time only a long-press and a faucet away.
    Android downside #9: The contacts conundrumIt’s 2020, for cryin’ out loud. Your contacts should not be accessible solely in your cellphone — and also you should not have to leap by means of hoops to “transfer” them from one machine to a different.If you are utilizing a cellphone made by anybody aside from Google, go into its Contacts app and ensure it is set to sync your information together with your Google account — not with the producer’s personal proprietary syncing service. This is particularly pertinent for Samsung homeowners, as the corporate tends to sync contacts with its personal self-contained service by default. That’s tremendous if you happen to solely wish to entry that information from that one cellphone and if you happen to solely plan to buy telephones made by Samsung sooner or later, however in every other situation, that setup just isn’t going to serve you properly.In Samsung’s Contacts app, faucet the three-line menu icon within the upper-left nook, then faucet “Manage contacts” adopted by “Default storage location.” Then, choose your Google account as a substitute of your Samsung account within the menu that comes up.From that time ahead, your contacts will likely be synced with Google Contacts — which implies they will all the time be accessible throughout the Google Contacts web site, from any pc the place you are signed in, they usually’ll be instantly accessible on any cellphone the place you put in the Google Contacts Android app.Android downside #10: Call-ending challengesEver end up scrambling to finish a name — however then your display will not come again on quick sufficient? Or possibly the display comes on, however the command to hold up is not proper there and prepared? An Android accessibility choice could make your life infinitely simpler by empowering you to press your cellphone’s bodily energy button anytime you are able to say goodbye. No must hunt round for the fitting icon and even look down at your cellphone in any respect — only one button press alongside the machine’s edge, and the individual on the opposite finish will likely be gone (thank goodness!).Just search for the “Power button ends call” choice in that Accessibility part of your system settings, flip it on, and prepare to get off a name extra simply than ever.JR Raphael/IDG
    If you dig round sufficient in Android’s settings, yow will discover a change that’ll make it a lot simpler to finish a name.
    Android downside #11: A frozen cellphoneOne of probably the most irritating Android issues of all is having a cellphone that is both caught on some course of and never responding or caught in a powered-off state and refusing to activate. But regardless of how dire issues could seem, there’s virtually actually all the time an answer.The easiest one is a tough reboot: Depending in your machine, you will wish to press and maintain both the ability button by itself for 30 seconds to a minute — or press and maintain the ability button and volume-down button collectively for that very same period of time (or till you are feeling a vibration and see one thing present up on the display). If you see a strange-looking menu that claims “Start” and has an image of an Android robotic, don’t be concerned: Just press the ability button once more, and your cellphone ought to boot up usually.If nothing occurs with both of these processes, attempt leaving your cellphone plugged in for a strong few hours, simply to ensure the battery is not depleted. Then attempt once more.If issues nonetheless aren’t developing — and if you happen to aren’t seeing even the usual battery indicator graphic seem on the show while you plug the cellphone in — properly, my good friend, it is time to make your solution to our last Android problem.Android downside #12: A non-charging phoneLast however not least is the issue to finish all Android issues: an Android cellphone that merely will not cost (and thus additionally will not energy up, as soon as its battery has been run all the way in which down). I’ve been there. And whereas it is actually attainable that you may be dealing with some kind of hardware-related defect, it is also fairly possible that that is one thing you’ll be able to repair in a jiff.So do this: Take one thing like a toothpick or the tip of a paper clip and really fastidiously and really gently dig round slightly within the cellphone’s charging port to filter any lint or particles that is constructed up in there. It sounds loopy, I do know, however typically, sufficient gunk will get collected in that space that the ability cable is not in a position to set up a superb connection and cost the machine (or cost it persistently, with out the connection coming out and in and making it troublesome for a lot charging to occur).Once you’ve got cleared out a superb quantity of gunk, plug the cellphone in once more and see if one thing occurs. If the battery was completely lifeless, you might need to depart it plugged in for some time earlier than you see any outcomes. But there is a respectable probability this can work — after which, in a matter of minutes, you will be again in enterprise.Sometimes, the only repair is probably the most satisfying one among all.

    Copyright © 2020 IDG Communications, Inc.

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