Call it OCD if you will, but I make it a priority to have a clean Notification panel. Like a chalkboard that isn't wiped spotless, I get an unsettling feeling that something in the universe isn't complete when there's unnecessary clutter in the drop-down. For this reason, I loathe the fact that I can't remove the "Wi-Fi connected" tile from my "Notifications."
Whether you're in a movie theater, driving, or just want to temporarily unplug from the grid, you need to ignore or completely silence your phone. You'll still receive calls and texts during this time, but in a world where people expect instant gratification, you'll end up looking like a jerk who doesn't answer back.
Children grow up way too fast these days, and handing them a mini-computer in the form of a smartphone only contributes to that. While access to the internet puts a world on knowledge at their fingertips, it also paves way for using any number of social networks available.
Something pretty awesome happened over the last couple of days. George Hotz, better known as Geohot, the infamous hacker known for jailbreaking iOS and exploiting the Sony Playstation 3, has brought joy to owners of just about all Android smartphones and tablets, especially those on AT&T and Verizon.
I'm the type of person that rarely has an audible ringer enabled on my phone. Haptic feedback (vibration) is enough for me... most of the time. When my phone isn't in my pocket, I become the type of person who frequently misses calls and texts—and no one likes that person.
Navigating through the darkness—literal darkness, not the existential variety—is always a difficult task on its own, and my Android doesn't necessarily make it any easier. Many manufacturers offer quick access to a flashlight or torch feature, but my Galaxy S4 doesn't have an easily accessible toggle or button available to turn it on.
One draw that Samsung's Galaxy S line has had over the Google Nexus 4 and 5 and the HTC One (though the M8 appears to be following suit) is expandable storage. Pop a microSD card into the slot and you have extra storage for music, photos, and even apps themselves in some cases.
International, T-Mobile, and Verizon customers all share something in common—their carriers provide unlocked Wi-Fi tethering for free. Of course, you still pay for the data used, but they don't charge you extra simply for using your Samsung Galaxy S4 as a wireless hotspot.
Unlocking your Samsung Galaxy S4 so you can use a different SIM card isn't the easiest thing in the world. In the states, unlocking cell phones was actually illegal, despite the White House's disapproval, though, a recent bill has making its way to the House floor and has made it legal again.
Only scumbags hide their call and message history, right? Wrong. While it may seem like a tactic for the unfaithful, it's still a good thing to do for certain contacts on your phone that you don't want to block outright.
Third-party ROMs like CyanogenMod are the ultimate form of customization for softModders. Hard-working developers offer us alternate Android experiences to replace our often bloatware-riddled stock ROMs.
Trust can be a touchy subject in general, and is often required when sharing personal information—especially so when handing our phones over to others. You may not have a ton of secret or nefarious information on your device, but that doesn't mean you want your mom or snoopy coworker having easy access to your messages or Facebook app.
While having a ton of friends on Snapchat does wonders to stroke my ego, sending content to all of them at once becomes a hassle when I have to go one by one, checking each contact individually.
Whether you're a secret spy or just a regular person with a few secrets, you may want to keep certain information on your smartphone private, and it's totally possible on Android to do so.
There's a lot of personal information residing on your phone, possibly even more than on your computer, so it's only a matter of time before someone tries to access it.
Back when 4.1 Jelly Bean came out (boy, how time flies), Android introduced expandable notifications. Depending on the notification, a simple swipe down with your finger could expand it and show extra content, like Delete and Reply buttons for Gmail messages.
Aside from being able to change the wallpaper and add shortcuts, the Galaxy S4's lock screen doesn't offer much in the department of personalization. The lock screen is efficient and practical, but it's also a little bland.
Scrolling through my Instagram feed, I inevitably come across an image or video that I genuinely like amongst the countless selfies and plates of food porn. Naturally I want to save this image before it's buried under new posts from the heaps of people I follow, but I'm left stranded with only the ability to take a screenshot.
While screenshotting a received Snapchat has never been a hard thing to do, saving one without being noticed is a completely different story. Previously, you would have to have either a rooted Android or jailbroken iOS device to save one of those self-destructing messages undetected, but one particular app has opened this trick up to the masses.
Reading articles on an Android phone using Chrome Browser can be a little bit of a battle; it often times requires adjusting the page to fit the screen in order to make it easier to read and scroll through. I sometimes lose this struggle and give up trying to read on my device, saving the article for a later time when I'm on my laptop.
Before you head to class, work, or sleep, you're probably doing the same thing over and over again—toggling off system settings like Wi-Fi, sound, data, or brightness, depending on the circumstances. Schedules and routines can help increase efficiency, so while you abide to a particular schedule, so should your Android.
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.
While it may be impolite to play around on a smartphone at dinner, having it consume my attention while I'm on a deadline or trying to study can prove disastrous. With Netflix and social media just a tap away, it's a dangerous game of wills, one that the phone usually wins.
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.
If you've had the pleasure of owning both an iOS and Android device, you may have noticed one subtle difference on each one's PIN unlock screen. Android's lock screen requires you to press "OK" after entering the PIN, whereas iOS's simply unlocks the screen right after the last digit.
One of the most frustrating things about full touchscreen phones, especially for those coming from one with a physical keyboard, is typing and editing text. Whether it's a quick text message, or Swyping out a full e-mail, it sucks realizing you've messed up a few words and have to go back and fix them.
Not every mod you add to your Android will revolutionize the way you use it, but many of them can make things a little more simple and convenient for you on a regular basis, like sliding across the status bar to adjust brightness or swiping the screen to put your display to sleep.
Ready to start rooting your Samsung Galaxy S4? For those of you with the GT-i9500 model GS4, this quick video will walk you through the entire rooting process using Odin and CWM.
One of the things I hate most about Android's alarm clock is that you get the alarm icon in your status bar way ahead of time. Regardless of whether the alarm is in five minutes, five hours, or five days, that icon just sits in your status bar.
Unless you like paying exorbitant prices for out-of-contract phones, most of us are stuck with the one we already have for two or more years. The tech industry moves fast, and as new phones are released seemingly every month, your Samsung Galaxy S4 might start looking older by the week.
Like many smartphones nowadays, your Samsung Galaxy S4 comes bundled with a headset for you to listen to music, watch videos without disturbing others, and even make phone calls. I personally only use it for music, whether it's Play Music, Pandora, or streaming from YouTube.
The battery in the Samsung Galaxy S4 may pack 500 more milliamps per hour than the old S3 battery, but that doesn't necessarily mean more battery life. High-powered devices need lots of juice, and the S4 is definitely more powerful than its predecessor. The new battery can handle a third more in standby days, and over twice as much in talk time hours. But, when you live on your phone all day long, that means nothing. You're battery is still going to have a hard time keeping up with you.
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.
Like the buttons on your computer's mouse and keyboard, the Home key on your Samsung Galaxy S4 serves a vital function in navigating through your device. It can get pressed dozens of times a day, going through hours of use and abuse.
April Fools may be over, but any day is a good day to prank someone, and the best time to do it is when everyone's eyes are glued to the television.
From amateurs to professionals, DSLR cameras are the standard weapon of choice for most photographers. If you own one, then you probably know how expensive of a hobby photography can be. A good starter camera can run between $400 and $500. Then there are accessories like tripods, lenses, filters, and memory cards that can slowly empty out your wallet.
There are those who hold their phone or set it down when they're not using it, and others, like myself, who pocket it. If you're like me and are rocking the pants pocket fade, then you'll love the new Android app I found.
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 root access, you're granted greater control over your device, allowing you to do things that your Android system wouldn't allow otherwise. Things like installing Xposed mods are made possible with root, but other advantages address performance and security, like stopping your Android logging, which is exactly what we'll be going over today.
Purchasing an actual book from a brick-and-mortar store is becoming increasingly less common for people to do, but it hasn't completely gone out of style just yet. There's something about entering a bookstore and viewing all the potential great stories and epic tales just sitting on the shelves, waiting to be discovered.