5 Ways to Get More Out of Android 11

Last week’s Tech Tip column collected a number of iOS 14 suggestions for iPhone customers, and lots of telephones operating Google’s Android 11 working system have related controls — like the power to customize the Quick Settings field or change the assistant’s synthetic voice. And when you begin poking round in Android 11, you’ll discover a lot of different helpful options.

Here are just some of them. These suggestions ought to work on Google’s current Pixel fashions, however remember that other phone makers typically use their very own modified variations of Android, so capabilities and menus could fluctuate.

If you’ve chosen the Google Assistant as your digital helper and use the present model of Google’s Phone app on your calls, you may crew them up with the Hold for Me characteristic to deal with one of trendy life’s most annoying duties: ready for a customer-service consultant. (You additionally want a minimum of a Pixel three or one other appropriate telephone.)

To enable Hold for Me, open the Phone app and faucet the three-dot More menu to get to the settings. Select Hold for Me after which faucet the button to activate the characteristic.

When you dial a toll-free quantity and are placed on maintain, faucet the onscreen button to activate Hold for Me. The Google Assistant takes over listening for a human and shows a “Don’t hang up” discover. When the customer support consultant picks up the decision, Google Assistant modifications the display screen message to “Someone’s waiting to talk to you” and highlights the “Return to call” button. The telephone captures the audio and a transcript of the decision, and you’ve got the choice to share the data with Google to assist enhance the characteristic.

Lending your telephone to somebody has its dangers — particularly lending it to a younger somebody who needs to watch movies however might also wander into your electronic mail and contacts checklist. To preserve the peace — and to preserve your private information safe — you can also make use of Android’s longtime “Multiple Users” setting. With it, you may arrange a guest account or separate consumer account in your telephone.


Open the Settings app, choose System, then Advanced and Multiple Users. Tap the On button after which Add User to create a brand new account or use the visitor account. You can change accounts right here or by swiping down from the highest of the display screen with two fingers to open the Quick Settings field and tapping the User icon.

Screen recordings are helpful for shows, demonstrations and troubleshooting. After years of third-party apps doing the job, Android 11 now features a Screen Recorder app.


To use it, swipe down from the highest of the display screen with two fingers to open the Quick Settings field after which swipe to the second web page of settings. Tap the Screen Record icon, activate the controls for audio and display screen faucets (if wanted) and faucet Start. To cease recording, swipe down from the highest of the display screen and faucet the pink notification bar. The recording is saved within the Movies library.

The Quick Settings panel is useful, however Android 11 provides yet one more place to stash generally used controls: Press and maintain the telephone’s Power button till the Power Menu seems. Here, you will have shortcuts for shutting down or restarting the telephone, utilizing Google Pay to buy stuff and managing smart home devices. Install an app like Power Menu Controls or Tasker and you’ll add different system controls to the display screen.

Credit…Google/Power Menu Controls

Another use for the Power button? Quickly press it twice to go proper to the Camera app for that fast snap.

Software builders have a historical past of sneaking so-called Easter eggs into code, and Android has long upheld this custom. Android 11 revives a earlier prize: a hidden recreation that units digital cats roaming round your telephone. To play it, go to the About Phone part of the Settings and faucet “Android version” a number of instances. When a quantity dial seems, crank all of it the best way up 3 times till you see an “11” and a cat emoji seem on the display screen.

Next, maintain down the Power button to get to the Power Menu. Tap the three-dot More menu to choose Add Controls. Select “See other apps” on the backside of the display screen, choose “Cat Controls” and add the water dish, meals bowl and cat toy to your Power Menu. Tap these controls and digital cats will start to seem in your notifications or in floating bubbles, prepared to be named and saved into your onscreen kitty corral. It’s not a posh recreation, however it’s a method to spend the time till the ultimate model of Android 12 arrives this yr.

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