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.
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.
Unless you're sporting an LG G3 or a mod that allows tap-to-sleep and/or tap-to-wake functionality, you're probably hitting the power button to sleep and wake your device. But that button may be awkward to hit, may be worn down, or may just stop working due to a manufacturer's error or a device drop. In any case, it is possible to end reliance on the power button, opting instead for a simple swipe gesture that will instantly lock your device.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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."
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.
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.
The new HTC One and Nexus series devices have already replaced their physical navigation keys with soft keys, and it's inevitable that we'll see more and more of this on future mobiles. Samsung continues to buck the trend entirely, but no manufacturer as gone as far as to remove the volume rockers.
Many Samsung Galaxy S4 users, specifically for Sprint, are reporting that the latest KitKat upgrade to Android 4.4.2 is causing some strange behavior.
When playing a game or using an app, incoming call alerts can be extremely irritating on my Galaxy S4 because they insist on taking over the entire screen. The alert is a little different on other Android phones, depending on the manufacturer's skin, but all are fairly intrusive in one way or another.
Classic party games like Spin the Bottle and Truth or Dare, immensely popular in the '80s and '90s, seem to have been long forgotten and abandoned by today's youth. Today, new forms of party games are all the rage, a prime example being Cards Against Humanity. Yes, CAH is hilarious and fun, but the classics can still be appreciated, as long as we catch them up to the times.
It's not enough for me to just listen to a mindless EDM song that can be retooled as a torturing method for Guantanamo Bay. As an actual fan of music, I yearn for substance and depth. Artists like Morrissey, Kurt Cobain, and John Lennon impacted lives with not only their music, but the subject matter of their songs.
This year's Google I/O brought the announcement of Android L, as well as the Preview builds of L for the Nexus 5 and Nexus 7 (2013), installed using either ADB on Windows or fastboot on any computer. Unfortunately, those of us without a Nexus device are out of luck—but not entirely.
How To: This Intelligent Personal Assistant for Your Galaxy S4 Is Way Better Than S Voice Could Ever Be
One feature of Samsung devices that's less useful than I had expected is S Voice, the voice assistant that ships with all new Galaxy devices. The voice is annoying, the features are lacking, and it's an all around subpar product. With Google Now, Siri, and now Microsoft's Cortana, Samsung needs to really step up their game—even on the new Galaxy S5.
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.
Xposed, by XDA developer rovo89, is a framework for your Samsung Galaxy S4 (or other Android device) that lets you add tweaks and customizations to your ROM (either stock or custom) without any real hassle.
There's something missing on your brand new Samsung Galaxy S4, and if you're a softModder like me, you know exactly what it is already. If you don't know, keep reading, because you should—anyone who wants a better Android experience should.
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.
In previous guides, we showed you how to easily tweak your Google Keyboard by using various colors and shapes, installing an Android L theme, or adding a convenient number row to its main display. And now, you can add another Google Keyboard theme to your arsenal by making it look like your iOS friend's iPad or iPhone keyboard.
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.
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.
Unlike the suave 007 that Daniel Craig portrayed, I am not a spy, nor am I that charming, but I do occasionally enjoy taking a stealthy video. Maybe I'm a jerk, but I often catch people doing ridiculous things and just think, "Aren't you embarrassed?"
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.
For new Android users, rooting an Android phone can often be an intimidating process, especially since there are so many different ways to gain root access, depending on your model and firmware version.
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.
The Samsung Galaxy S4 is a great smartphone, but do you know all the tips and tricks within the handset?
Probably the most favorite custom ROM among softModders is CyanogenMod, a theme-friendly take on stock Android that not only makes it easier to customize your device, but also increases performance using a variety of system tweaks and enhancements.
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.
Adjusting the brightness on your Android device is a simple but highly utilized action. For the most part, aside from the Sprint LG G3 variant, the brightness slider can be conveniently found nestled in your notification panel. And though it is easy to access, there is a small drawback to this feature.
While viewing notifications, I have a nasty habit of accidentally hitting Clear and getting rid of them all before I actually have a chance to read them. There is an easy way to view the notification history on Android, but if you turn off or reboot your Samsung Galaxy S4, the history is wiped clean.
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.
The new Samsung Galaxy S4 has something no other phone has ever had before—weather sensors. Older devices like the Galaxy Nexus, S3, Note, and Note 2 do have a atmospheric pressure sensor, aka a barometer. However, they do not have a thermometer or hygrometer like the GS4 does, which measures ambient temperature and humidity.