With more than 85% market share, Android is the most popular mobile OS in the world. The prime reason why it has such a massive popularity across the world is that it’s both easy-to-use and highly functional.
There is a range of exceptionally user-friendly shortcuts which make using Android smartphone incredibly easy. As for example, you can instantly launch camera, set reminder, text or call your friend with just a tap and more. These shortcuts can empower your productivity big time. Let’s have a go at them all!
Best Android Shortcuts You Must Know
Launch Camera with Power Button
Whenever I come across any gorgeous scenes or moments, I make sure to capture them to relieve their beauty as and when I want. With Android 6.0 Marshmallow or later, it’s very simple to launch the Camera app just by double pressing the Power/Lock button. Open Settings → Display and make sure “Press power button twice for camera” is enabled.
Create Shortcuts for Actions
It’s great to create shortcuts for different actions in order to carry out those activities a bit fast. There is an excellent app named Activity Launcher which lets you create shortcuts for a number of actions on your Android device. As for instance, it allows you to simply press and hold on an activity to create a shortcut of it on the homescreen. Then using a shortcut, you can directly launch Gmail’s composing screen, Google’s easter eggs game and a lot more.
To bring plenty of fun and convenience into the way you use your smartphone, these shortcuts would prove to be a game changer. Get started with them and create some neat shortcuts to navigate your device with utmost ease. Also try out third party launcher apps such as, Nova or Apex in order to boost your user-experience.
Access Notification History Quickly
Do you know that you can check your entire notification history with a single tap?
To do so, simply press and hold on the homescreen and tap on “Widgets”. Then, scroll down below in the widgets page and add the “Settings” shortcut.
Now, you need to tap on “Notification log” in the list of several settings shortcuts available to create a shortcut for Notifications Log on the homescreen. Now, simply tap on the shortcut to access the notifications history.
One thing you need to know ‘Settings widget’ might not be available on the smartphones running custom Android skins.
Create Cool Shortcuts for Direct Messages, Calls Navigation
You can text or call or navigate to Home screen by tapping just once on your device. Android allows you to create shortcuts right using Widgets section in order to message or call any contact with just a tap.
Besides, there is a way to set up a shortcut to navigate to a certain location with the Maps Navigate widget.
Make the Utmost Use of Google Now
If used elegantly, Google Now can significantly improve your experience.
Using Google Now voice commands, you can ask it to answer general query, control Android settings, launch apps, send messages, set alarm or reminder, take notes, make calls, navigate to a place, play music etc.
The best thing about it is that you can carry out all these activities hands-free.
As for instance, you can ask Google Now to answer various queries like;
How tall is Salman Khan?
What is 10 percent of 78?
What’s the weather tomorrow ?
When is holiday in this month?
When is India’s next T-20 match?
What song is this? When any music playing in the background)
What time is it in London?
Create a calendar event: name, date, and time.
Remind me to do go to “River Front” tomorrow at 4 AM.
Hey, Google.. set a timer for 5 minutes.
Navigate to the place of interest in Mumbai.
Listen to Justin Bieber on Google Play Music.
To make the most of this feature, enable “Ok Google” detection by going to Settings → Voice.
That’s not all; you can also use “Google Now on Tap” from anywhere on your device to carry out activities like setting an alarm, calendar event, reminder, searching for restaurants, shopping malls, tourist destinations, famous parks simply by pressing the home on-screen button. To me, it works as a superb shortcut.
Unlock Your Smartphone Faster
At times, unlocking the smartphone ,which doesn’t have the fingerprint scanner, may seem to be a bit annoying. Luckily, there is a feature called “Smart Lock” which lets you set your trusted devices, places and faces to unlock your Android device atomically.
To set up Smart Lock, make sure you have enabled lock on your device. You can use pattern PIN or password option.
Simply pull down from the top edge of your device and then tap on the gray time/date bar. Next, tap the “Settings” gear.
Now, tap on “Security” options and then “Smart Lock.”
In the Smart Lock settings, there are options; trusted devices trusted face, and trusted places. You can enable all the three options at the same time. It allows you to set up as many trusted devices as you wish. However, it lets you set up only one trusted face.
Search for Apps a Lot Easily
Most of us keep a lot of apps on our phone. At times, searching for a particular app becomes a little confusing. Personally, I use Google search to search for installed apps easily. Besides, Google Widget, Google Now, the app drawer search bar in Google Now Launcher can let you search apps quickly on your device.
Switch Apps Quickly
With Android Nougat, you can instantly switch app by simply double tapping on the Recent/Multitasking button. If your phone is running the previous version of Android, you can use third-party apps like “Last App Switcher” switch between your current and last app with just a tap.
Reply to Messages from Notification Center
One of my favorite features in Android Nougat is inline reply support which lets you reply to messages right from the Notification Center.
There is a third party app named quickReply that can let you reply to messages from NC even on previous versions of Android.
No longer enjoy launching your favorite apps or activities by tapping? You can use gesture shortcuts. There are some interesting apps such as, Nova Launcher and Apex Launcher, All in one gestures app which let you enable gestures for several shortcuts and functions.
Use Assistive Touch for Android
iOS has got a handy feature dubbed “AssistiveTouch” which allows you to navigate your smartphone with ease. For example, it provides volume/Home button right on the screen of your device. Do you want to use the same feature on your Android as well?
There are quite a few third-party apps such as, Button Savior which bring to you Assistive Touch on your Android device as well.
Google Keyboard Shortcuts
If you own a smartphone that runs stock Android, chances are, you are using the official Google Keyboard.
Google Keyboard has several extremely user-friendly shortcuts that can hugely bolster your productivity.
Capitalize Individual Letters
There is a very quick way to capitalize the individual letter. Just swipe from caps-lock button to the letter you wish to capitalize.
Access numbers and symbols Effortlessly
It’s not so convenient to tap on the “?123” key to enter numbers and symbols especially when you are typing message fast. However, there is a smart way you can enter number or symbols more conveniently. Simply touch and hold the symbols or ?123 key and drag it to a letter that relates to a number or symbol on the page.
Enter Number Fraction Instantly: You can quickly enter number fraction. To do so, simply press and hold a number key in order to access its respective fractions.
Take Screenshot Quickly
Though it’s quite easy to take screenshot using Power/Lock + Volume Down combo, I find Google Now on Tap even easier.
To trigger Now on Tap, simply press and hold the home button and then tap on the share icon at the bottom left to upload the screenshot to Photos. Pretty easy, isn’t it?
Use Instant Responses to Let Callers Know Why You Can’t Answer
You are watching a movie with your friend. In the meanwhile, you have got a call from your father, wouldn’t you want to respond quickly and let you daddy know why you can’t answer the call? There is a way to use quick responses to let callers know why you can’t answer the call.
To do so, just swipe up on the incoming call screen and select what text you want to send. You should see some readymade options such as, “Can’t talk right now. What’s up?” and “I’ll call you right back. On most devices, you will get the option to customize these pre-defined messages as per your need.