I have Verizon, America's largest 4G LTE network, as my cell service provider, but there are times when I find myself with a pretty shitty signal, rendering my upload and download speeds substantially slower than usual.
The status bar is where we get all of the important need-to-know information for our phones. At a quick glance, you can see what time it is on your Samsung Galaxy S3, how much battery power you have remaining, your current signal strength, and more. But after a while, things can feel a little stale up there.
Your Note 3 is a magnificently large phone. So much so that it has a handful of built-in options that make it easier to use with one hand, collectively called "One-handed operation." While these settings are helpful, they have to be manually enabled and disabled whenever you're done using them.
There are a lot of things your Samsung Galaxy Note 2 can do straight out of the box, but there's also a ton of things it can't, or simply could be better at. That's why most of us end up rooting—to enhance the mobile experience.
KitKats? Toast? Sorry if that headline made you hungry, but no I'm not talking about Nestlé's chocolatey wafer treat, nor the crunchy slices of bread you have with your eggs in the morning.
Whether it's because you travel quite often or have loved ones in another part of the country, Android makes it easy to place dual clocks on your home screen using a widget. While there are several other widgets you can use to tell the time, that's pretty much the only way you can get two different time zone clocks on your Android device. If you want an alternative option, I'm going to show you a mod that lets you get two different clocks in your Status bar on your Samsung Galaxy Note 2 or ot...
Ever since the early days of their existence, cell phones have been reducing the common wristwatch to nothing more than a fashion accessory. I'm not exactly a watch aficionado, but I do own a few that I wear on a daily basis. Since I have family in different parts of the world, I love my watches that have a second time zone, allowing me to see what time it is where they are.
Introducing a unique way to share photos and videos among friends and family, Snapchat was the big hit of 2013 (despite its many flaws). Thanks to its ephemeral nature and lack of third-party sign-in integration, it quickly grew into a multibillion-dollar company in the span of just 12 months.
Samsung's quick settings toggles are insanely useful for accessing settings that you would normally need to dig into menus for. Definitely a case of function over form, though. TouchWiz's bright green on dark blue has to be one of the fugliest color combinations I have ever seen.
With the Android 4.4 KitKat update slated for release sometime in October (according to Nestle), I'm sure you're excited to get your hands on and test out all of the new features of Google's latest mobile operating system.
If you're a self-described multitasker, Samsung has a feature that's perfect for you called Multi-Window, which lets you display two apps on your Galaxy S4's screen simultaneously.
How To: The Fastest Way to Choose Which App Launches Links & Files: Remove the "Just Once" Prompt on Your Galaxy Note 2
There's two things I'm always looking for in my Samsung Galaxy Note 2. Efficiency and quickness. So, like any other softModder, I tend to download a bunch of apps and tweaks that help speed up my device's overall performance. In doing so, I often come across the "Complete action using" popup, which is oddly enough, one of the most inefficient features ever. You'll see this popup whenever you click on something that can be opened with more than one option. If you click on a link in Google sear...
Snapchat's self-destructing nature is the perfect way to send funny and potentially embarrassing photos and videos (something Anthony Weiner wishes he knew about). That's why there are currently 150 million Snapchats sent each day. While it may be used for fun, many fail to recognize that there's a dark side to every good thing. While Snapchat claims that the pictures and videos on their application are completely obliterated—not only from the phone, but from the Snapchat server—there are oth...
Many Android games use large, storage-heavy OBB files to store supplemental data. Generally, games with high-end graphics download these extra files when you install them from the Google Play Store.
When Apple released their plus-sized iPhone 6 and 6 Plus models, it only made sense that they would include a one-handed feature to accommodate the larger displays. That particular feature is called Reachability, and with just a quick double-tap of the Home button, the screen shifts to the bottom half of the device for easier use with one hand.
If you pay close attention, you might notice that the screen on your Android begins to flicker or pulsate when you lower the brightness past a certain point. This is a result of the AMOLED technology Samsung, among other manufacturers, use in their displays, and the way that these types of screens operate.
Samsung's TouchWiz skin gets a lot of flak for its appearance, namely the garish colors on the quick settings toggles. The bright green on dark blue scheme is definitely an eyesore compared to the ones in stock Android, and even other manufacturer skins like HTC's Sense.
Toast notifications are a type of pop-up alert built into Android, letting us know when an app has performed a certain action. Whether it's Gmail saving a draft or Firefox opening a new tab, toasts are meant to be informational while not being totally intrusive.
There's no such thing as a perfect Android keyboard. Some, like Swype, have gesture typing down to a science, but lack in predictive technology. SwiftKey, on the other hand, boasts awesome next-word prediction, but less than stellar gesture typing. Many others are optimized for multiple languages, space saving, or emojis, but none are without their flaws.
When you search for a specific location or business with the Google app, a Knowledge Graph card is usually the top result. This card displays a handy mini-map and offers a quick link for directions to the location of your query, but it has one irksome flaw—these links can only be opened by the Google Maps app.
Android's beauty is in its customization; you can have widgets for anything, launchers that look and feel completely different from one another, and fonts you can change at any time. And it doesn't stop at aesthetics—you can go much deeper than looks.
One of the Note 3's best features is Multi Window mode, which allows users to display more than one app on the screen at the same time, taking advantage of the large and high-resolution display.
Picture this scenario—you're using your phone in a dimly-lit room, then you move to an area with a lot more ambient light, and Auto Brightness kicks in within a few seconds to ramp up the backlight. That's the way it should be, right? But then you move back to the darker area, and your phone takes 30 seconds before it decides to dim back out. Pretty annoying, isn't it?
An app can request a wakelock to prevent your Android device from entering sleep mode so that it can sync data in the background. This obviously drains your battery, because instead of running in low-power sleep mode, your processor is fully activated while it performs its tasks.
Even with the highest-tiered data plan available, there are times that your phone or your carrier might downgrade your connection to 3G or even lower. This usually occurs when you've made a phone call, or you've switched cell towers while traveling.
Think of all the times you've ever copied and pasted a string of text on your device. At least once, I bet you've wanted to see your copy history.
Auto-correction is a double-edged sword if I ever saw one. It's great because I'd have an abundance of typos without it, yet it's extremely frustrating (and embarrassing) when it doesn't actually work. Just take a look at the very recent example below from Breaking Bad star Aaron Paul. Funny for us, embarrassing for him. I have a particularly difficult time typing on small keyboards (i.e. fat-finger syndrome), so disabling auto-correction on my Samsung Galaxy S4 is a no-go. I'm willing to ris...
Normal wear and tear, combined with unfortunate accidents, can take a toll on any smartphone leading to scratches, cracks, and breaks that can leave physical buttons useless. One of the first buttons to usually go is the power button, since it's the main way to turn your phone (and screen) off and on.
A certain selection of applications on your Android device (both system and downloaded) start running as soon as your Samsung Galaxy Note 2 turns on, laboriously hammering away at whatever tasks they have to do.
Twitter found a sweet spot with its 160-character limit, but Snapchat sports a social media low of 31 characters, forcing us to condense our ideas into a few short words when typing in picture captions because of their ephemeral nature. While this severely limited amount of words is Snapchat etiquette, I've got so much more to say than 31 characters!
In an attempt to keep things simple, Snapchat has a limited amount of editing features, made up of "smart" photo filters, drawing pens, and special text captions. If you want more editing capabilities, you'll be pleased to know there's a way, no thanks to Snapchat, but you will need to be rooted.
Getting the volume on our phones to be just right can be a pretty annoying task. Some people like to listen to music and videos with max volume while some like it a little lower. With the default volume control on your Samsung Galaxy S3, there are only 15 steps before you reach max volume, making it tough to find that sweet spot.
Android 4.4 KitKat has begun rolling out for the Galaxy Note 3 in India, Poland, Russia, Switzerland, and several other countries, and an unofficial build for AT&T customers has been leaked for all of us stateside.
Pinch-to-zoom has been a well-known feature in Google Maps, but one-finger zoom has always been a more practical way of navigating, especially for those of us using our phones with one hand.
While some Android applications have built-in gestures that allow you to perform certain actions, it's not a feature that's been comprehensively, let alone consistently implemented. If you're on Twitter or Facebook and you want to go back, the only global way is by tapping on the capacitive back button at the bottom of your device. Thanks to XDA dev PeterCxy, you can now enable a global swipe back gesture on your Android smartphone or tablet, making it easier than ever to backtrack within apps.
How To: Trick Apps That Won't Run if Your Phone Is Rooted into Thinking Its Not on the Galaxy Note 3
As a preventative measure against exploitation, certain Android applications won't work if your device is rooted. Opening one of these apps that detects root will typically end up with a warning and an inability to access its features, like in the picture below. AS IF!
How To: Squeeze Out an Extra 5 Minutes of Battery Life in Critical Situations on a Galaxy Note 2 or 3
We've all been there. Rushing to find an outlet because your smartphone's battery is about to die and you're in the middle of uploading a picture on Instagram or something else of dire importance. Android's operating system shuts down automatically when ever there is 1% left in order to allow for a proper shut down, and so as not to mess with the calibration of the battery, extending its overall life.
With all of the personal data that's stored on our smartphones, it's of vital importance that we have some sort of lock screen security enabled. One of the Galaxy S5's killer features is obviously the fingerprint scanner. It makes the process of dealing with a secure lock screen a bit easier than typing in a password or PIN.
Widget toggles, or "power toggles" as they're often called, have been around for quite a while. They serve their purpose nicely as an easy way to add switches to your home screen or notification area for functions that don't come with the stock software on your device.
Out of the box, your Android device can be customized in many different ways, and a ton more with root access, but adjusting the actual interface of the system is a little bit more challenging. Changing the status bar size, icon width/length, and positioning of toast notifications are things that require a little bit more know-how—until now.