12 things to do after buying a new Android
1. Link your smartphone to your Google Account
When you turn it on for the first time, the setup wizard will welcome you. First of all, he will ask you to connect to your Google account. If you accidentally or intentionally missed this step, later you can do it like this:
Open your smartphone’s settings.
Click Accounts, and on some devices, Users and Accounts.
At the bottom of the screen, click "Add Account", then select its type – Google.
Enter your username and password.
A Google account is required in order to install applications via Google Play, receive email, synchronize data and contacts. In general, on Android without it in any way. After the smartphone connects to your account, you can proceed with further actions.
2. Update the system and applications
Even if you have a completely new smartphone, it’s worth checking and installing updates. During the time that the device was on the counter, the manufacturer and developers of third-party applications probably rolled out new versions of their programs and patches for firmware.
If you have clean Android firmware, open the settings and click “System” → “Advanced Settings ” → “System Update”. On some firmware there is no “Advanced Settings " item – in this case, click "About System".
You will see a menu informing you of the update status. If a new version of the software has appeared, click Update.
For owners of modified firmware from Samsung, Xiaomi and other manufacturers, the settings will be slightly different. You can see update instructions for firmware on a device of a particular brand in our article.
Update costs not only the system, but also the smartphone application.
Go to the Google Play store and open the menu on the side.
Click "My apps and games."
If updates are available, click Update All and wait a bit.
3. Turn on the “Device Search” function
Losing a smartphone is very unpleasant. Losing a new smartphone is just awful. Therefore, it is worth taking care of protecting your Android before anything happens to it. To do this, enable the Google “Search for device” function.
Open your smartphone’s settings and go to “Settings” → Google → “Security”.
Click “Find device” and make sure that this feature is enabled.
Go to android.com/find and check that your smartphone is correctly displayed on the map.
The built-in Google device search is a very convenient thing. But if you want to use protection more seriously, pay attention to these options.
4. Adjust the screen lock
Since a lot of confidential data is stored in our phones (personal photos, correspondence, passwords and bank records), it is simply necessary to protect your Android from curious outsiders. First of all, set the screen lock.
Open your smartphone’s settings.
Select “Protection and location” or “Lock and protection”, depending on the version of your firmware.
Choose a protection method – password, PIN, pattern, face scan or fingerprint.
Most importantly, remember your password carefully. So that it doesn’t work out so that you can’t unlock the smartphone.
5. Activate Smart Lock
Locking the screen is an essential security condition. But sometimes the need to constantly unlock the screen is annoying, especially if you are at home. And to make your life easier, it’s worth activating the Smart Lock function. It unlocks the smartphone automatically if you are at home or if there is a trusted Bluetooth device nearby – for example, your desktop computer or smart bracelet.
Open your smartphone’s settings and tap “Protection & Location” → Smart Lock.
Enter your password.
Select the option you want to automatically unlock — in trusted locations, next to a trusted device, or through the Ok Google passphrase.
6. Set a schedule for Do Not Disturb
Are you not tired of manually turning off notifications on your smartphone each time before going to university, to work, or getting ready for bed? Instead of opening the curtain each time, it’s better to set the schedule, and the phone will switch to silent mode automatically.
This is done like this:
Swipe down on the screen to open the notification curtain and find the button for activating the Do Not Disturb mode.
Press and hold the button until the schedule settings appear.
Activate the "Turn on automatically" function.
Click "Add" and specify at what time and on what days of the week the phone should automatically turn off notifications. You can create as many rules as you like, for example, so that silent mode is turned on when you work, then turned off, and then turned back on while you sleep.
When you finish creating the schedule, click on the daw in the upper right corner to save the settings and exit the settings.
7. Turn on the Ok Google command in the Google Assistant
Google Voice Assistant makes life a lot easier, especially if you need to do something with your phone and your hands are busy. For example, switch the playing track or receive a call. But first you need to configure the assistant so that he always responds to the Ok Google team.
Open the main Google app.
Click the ellipsis labeled "More." Select "Settings."
Select the “Google Assistant” option, switch to the “Assistant” tab and press “Phone”.
Turn on Google Assistant and click on Access with Voice Match. When the smartphone asks you to provide a voice sample, click Next, say Ok Google four times, and select Done.
If desired, enable voice unlock. It is useful if you need to give instructions to the assistant, and the screen is off.
8. Enable photo backups in Google Photos
Google Photos is a great app. Thanks to him, you can organize your photos, and the program ensures that no picture is lost.
Open the Google Photos app.
Click “Allow” to enable automatic loading and saving of images.
In the window that opens, select the Google account with which you want to synchronize the photo.
Choose in what quality to upload the photo – for pictures with the original quality, the place is limited by the amount of your storage in Google Drive. There is no such restriction for the High Quality option.
Check "Use mobile Internet" if you don’t care about traffic consumption.
9. Install the necessary applications
Lifehacker has for you a list of the best and most proven applications that you should install on a new gadget. Of course, you do not need to download them all. Choose only what you need. And remember: less is better. The fewer applications you have installed, the more stable and faster Android will work. And at the same time there will be more space for files and music.
10. Choose your default apps
When you first open a file or link, Android asks you which program to use. This is a little annoying. Therefore, after you install the essential programs, it is worth spending a little time and setting up applications by default. Then the system will know your preferences and will not pester you with unnecessary questions.
Open "Settings" and go to the "Applications" section.
Look for “Default Applications” (it can be in the “Advanced” section or in the menu with three dots in the upper right corner of the screen).
In the settings that open, select your favorite browser, image viewer, music player and video player, a program for calls and messages, email client and other frequently used applications.
When done, click on the arrow at the top of the screen to save your changes and exit.
11. Set up mobile data savings
Your mobile Internet may be limited, and Android really likes to spend traffic. Therefore, you should configure the system so that it behaves more economically.
Open your Android settings.
Click "Network and Internet" → "Data Transfer".
Turn on the "Set traffic limit."
Indicate how many megabytes a smartphone can download before you receive a notification. After reaching this limit, mobile Internet will be disconnected.
It will also be useful to limit application updates via the mobile network. For this:
Go to the Google Play Store.
Open the side menu on the left and click "Settings".
Make sure that in the "Auto-update applications" is the switch "Only via Wi-Fi."
A few more ways to save mobile traffic are described in our article.
12. Customize your home screen
Customizing your home screen is quite an individual lesson. Some Android users like to bombard it with widgets and prefer live wallpapers. Others follow the philosophy of minimalism and strive so that the phone does not distract them from important matters. Nevertheless, you can give a couple of general recommendations.
Do not create many desktops. Three will be enough. Otherwise, flipping them in search of the right one will take a lot of time.
Only place applications and widgets that you frequently use on your home screen. Any games and unimportant tools are best hidden in the depths of the menu.
Create folders. Put your applications into categories and you can quickly find the ones you need.
Instead of digging into the Web and manually selecting Android wallpapers, install some application that will update the backgrounds automatically. For example, Wallz or Casualis.
Wallz: wallpaper application
The lockdown team
Casualis: Auto wallpaper change
8 Android gestures you might not know about
5 apps you need to remove from Android right now
How to enable night mode in Google apps on Android