5 Things to do right away on your new Android device: Part 2

5 more settings and tweaks that you might get around to on your new Android, but probably won't


7) Add your contact information to the lock screen

Because you read tip number six, just above, you now have a phone that, when awoken from sleep outside the home or office, asks for a security code before allowing access. But that also means someone who finds your phone has no idea whose phone they’re holding, because they can’t get into it. So in the same Security section of Settings, tap the Owner Info section. Enter in your name, email address, and perhaps an alternate phone number, and click to enable “Show owner info on lock screen.”

8) Install Dropbox

This is a cheat, because this is my constant advice to anyone, for just about any computer gripe or question. But Dropbox’s Android app is very good, and there are desktop clients available for almost every computer out there, with 2 GB of Dropbox server space available for free, and lots more through easy promotions and referrals.

Why Dropbox? Because, as one prescient Quora answer explained, it is just a folder that magically keeps the same files wherever you look at it. It solves a lot of conundrums at once:

  • “I wish I had this (photo/song/file) from my (computer/phone) on my (computer/phone).

  • “I need to share all these files with someone, but there are too many to attach to one email.”

  • “I’d rather not deal with Google Drive or Windows Live or whatever, and the sharing, permissions, blah blah blah. I just want people to download this thing.”

9) Change your screen sleep time

There is a Battery section of Settings that shows exactly which apps and processes have been eating your power. Almost always, the hungriest thing on your phone is “Screen.” On my phone, as I write this, Screen ate 45 percent of the battery loss over nearly 8 hours since my last charge. Particularly on a phone with a larger screen, the screen is where much of your juice is fleeing your phone at the speed of light.

Head to Settings, then into Display, and choose the Sleep setting. Pick a setting that works for how you use your phone. Pick a shorter time to save on battery, or a longer time if you’re often doing tasks that require keeping the screen on without interaction, like reading longer items, watching a timer, and so on.

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