Top 10 android 4.0 ice cream tips and tricksAuthor: Muhammad Usman
Google's latest version of its Android software takes it up to version 4.0 and higher which is most commonly known as the Ice Cream Sandwich update of the mobile OS.
The big selling point is that it unifies the experience across all hardware; users of phones running ICS see largely the same interface, albeit along with some layout changes for the bigger screened devices.
Of course, there's still the issue of manufacturer skins to take into account. While Android 4.0 Ice Cream offers a basic and seriously updated feature set, some tools & features may be missing or accessed through different means when using the same OS on phones made by different companies.
So Samsung's Android 4.0 update, which we are seeing arrive on its Galaxy S II right now, looks & works in a different way to the Android 4.0 you shall shortly see arriving on HTC's exciting new One Series of phones.
Which makes compiling a list of tips that work on all versions of the OS out there rather hard? But enough of our fault finding. Here are a few useful shortcuts to getting the most out of your Ice Cream Sandwich serving, whenever metaphorical waitress decides to bring it to your metaphorical table.
1. Add quick controls to the browser
One of the options buried beneath the Labs section of Android 4.0's web browser is Quick Controls option. This adds pop-out menu to the browser; which pulls in little semi-circular collection of shortcuts to the main browser features, removing the URL bar & giving you more screen to play with. Also, holding down Back button is Android standard way of bringing up the bookmarks and history tool too. But that has been around for years.
2. Long-press to uninstall
Long-pressing on an app within the app drawer lets you drag it to a Home screen, but it's also pops up couple of menus along the top of the screen. Application Information gives you the boring technical stuff about how much memory it's taking up or you can fling it off the other way to uninstall it.
3. Flying Android screensaver
One odd undocumented little secret within Android 4.0 is strange little collection of flying Androids which you can look at. Look at for as long as you like. To activate, head into the phones about screen and hammer away at the Android Version tab and it'll all happen.
4. Save your eyes with inverted rendering
Inverted rendering is a posh way of saying it makes the pages black and turns text to white, so it looks like you're reading the internet from 1997. It's also supposedly save the battery, plus is easier on the eyes if you're reading in the dark. It is under the browser's settings tab, within the accessibility area - and there's a contrast slider also.
5. Set a custom rejection text message
When your Twitter action is rudely interrupted by someone actually telephoning you, there is a polite way to give the caller the boot. Android 4.0 Ice Cream lets users ping a rejection text message to callers - and you're able to customize this too. Just answer a call and ping the lock screen notification up to access to custom rejection messaging area.
6. Stop app icons automatically appearing
One of the many new ICS features is the way Google lets apps automatically add shortcuts to themselves on your Home screen when they've finished installing. It is useful but if you're a control freak and wish to remain 100% in charge of your Home layout, head to Google Play app's settings tab and untick the Auto-add Shortcuts toggle.
7. There's a Settings shortcut in the Notifications pane
That little settings icon in the ICS notifications area isn't just art to fill space. It's an shortcut to your phone or tablet's settings area. So use instead of giving it a Home screen icon slot all to itself.
8. Manually close apps
Google's lovely new recent apps multitasking menu also lets you close apps quickly, you should suspect one's gone rogue. A Long-press within Recent Apps listing lets you visit the app's info page, from where you can easily force to close it.
9. Remove the lock screen
It's possible to entirely bin your Android 4.0 lock screen, making the cell phone instantly turn itself on when you press the power button. It is an security nightmare, but if your phone lives entirely on your desk and you demand instant access without any unlocking, head - Security > Screen lock & select none. Then be very careful.
10. Folders in the dock
Android's new official love of folder formation makes it dead easy to combine app shortcuts and creating folders, simply by dragging one icon on top of another. You can make these groups of applications even easier to access by dragging a folder onto the ICS floating dock, meaning you can compress stacks more content on to each creaking Home screen.
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