Android for beginners: Tips and tricks for your new smartphone

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If you’re holding your shiny new Android smartphone and are wondering how to get the most from it, then you’ve come to the right place.

Whether this is your first smartphone, you’ve just hopped over from an iPhone, or you’ve had a number of Android handsets, we’ve pulled together some of the best Android tips and tricks to help you get the most from your phone.

Android is an ever-changing beast with many faces. There are different versions of the software, there are plenty of different manufacturer skins layed over that Android core, like those from Sony, Samsung or HTC, and there’s a limitless level of customisation you can apply from Google Play, or other third-party sources.

That means that few Android devices are alike, but all Android devices have the same foundation. So, starting at the beginning, here’s how to master your Android phone.


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Tips and Tricks on How to Play DAT Video File in Android Device

DAT is a file extension that’s mostly found on video CD. It is usually used to store MPEG-1 encoded video on VCD. This kind of video file is file format that are not playable in the default Android video player.

But don’t worry, there are ways to make it playable. In this article, I’ll show you how to play DAT video file on your Android device.

To be able to play DAT video file in your android device, you should need the help of third-party video player app. In this case, I suggest you to use MX player.

MX player is one of the most popular video players that can play almost every video format. It also play all resolutions that supported by your device.

If you don’t have one, you can download it for free at Google play store.

Once installed, open the DAT video file with your file manager and the video should be loaded and played by the MX player.

open video with mx player - Tips and Tricks on How to Play DAT Video File in Android Device

However, you’re unable to load DAT video file on ‘My files’ or ‘Gallery’ app, as well as ‘MX player’. To be able to open DAT video file directly from your Gallery app or MX player, you should rename the file extension from .DAT to.MPG. For example, filename.dat change to filename.mpg.

If you don’t know how to rename file extension on android, you can read this article – How to Change File Extension on Android Device.

Once you’re done, the video will appear on your MX player list and you can now play the video file on your Android device.

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10 Essential Android 4.3 Tips and Tricks

Android 4.3 is a mature mobile operating system and it’s quite easy to use, but you can make it even more useful to you with these essential tips and tricks. Remember that, while some of these might work on other versions of Android, too, most of them are for Android 4.3 and later.

1. Create Restricted Profiles for Users

If you have a child and he’s playing around with your Android tablet, you might want to make sure they don’t have access to something they don’t need to see. That is why the Restricted Profiles feature can be extremely useful. You can basically decide which apps the user of the profile has access to and also if he can use the Google Play Store to add new apps.

2. Use an Office Suite to Manage Documents

If you’re travelling a lot, you’ll probably need to access and edit documents on the go. In order to do so, a full-fledged office suite, which can handle different types of files, is a must.

The good news is that there are some great free office suites out there. The first one that comes to my mind is Kingsoft Office, which is one of the best free office suites for Android. It allows you to open no less than 23 types of document files, including DOC, DOCX, XLS, XLSX, PPT, PPTX or PDF.

3. Use Google Now to Get Information When You Need It

Google Now, which some find creepy, specializes in providing you with the information you need, the second you need it. It can provide you with flight data before your flight, sports scores for your favorite teams, weather, photo spots around you and more. It’s easy to use – most of the time, it does everything on its own.

What’s even nicer is that a recent update has provided it with location-based reminders. Basically, that means that you’ll be notified to do something when you’re in a specific place. Even if you do find Google Now’s prediction abilities strange, this can come in handy.

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Three tips to keep your mobile data safe

mobilesecurity primary 100057889 large - Three tips to keep your mobile data safeKeeping your mobile gear secure while you’re zipping across the grid is tricky business. Laptops and tablets—veritable gold mines of personal information—are popular targets for thieves. Law enforcement officials, meanwhile, could confiscate your smartphone and then examine the data—merely as a result of a routine traffic stop.

If you’re packing an Android device, it gets even trickier, because with such a device, you stand a better chance of falling prey to the booming mobile malware market. Independent malware testing lab AV-Test had less than 10,000 Android malware samples in its database by late 2011. Now, two years later, that number has blossomed to around 1.3 million.

Data security is never easy, and security with mobile devices—smartphones, tablets, and, of course, laptops—is no exception. But you can take a few steps to meaningfully improve your mobile security. Join me as we walk through three of the best strategies. (Note: Click on the smaller images below, to enlarge them.)

Encrypt everything
One of the easiest things you can do to protect an Android or iOS device is to take advantage of built-in hardware encryption. This feature will turn the data on your phone into nearly unreadable junk—unless it’s properly unlocked with your password.

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How to send group texts on an Android Smartphone

How to send group texts on an Android smartphone

Step 1.

With Android, a good way to manage group texts is to set up a contacts group first. So the first thing to do is go into Contacts. Tap Apps then Contacts or tap Contacts from the home screen.

Step 1 Group SMS Android thumb - How to send group texts on an Android Smartphone

Step 2.

Tap Groups to get into the Groups area of the phone. Depending on your Android version and phone you might have an Add Groups option or you might need to tap the Menu to call up a Create Groups option.

Step 2 Group SMS Android thumb - How to send group texts on an Android Smartphone

Step 3.

You group needs a meaningful, such as PCA Softball team. Once you’ve typed it in, tap Save to finish creating the group of friends.

Step 3 Group SMS Android thumb - How to send group texts on an Android Smartphone

Step 4.

Now you can add people to the group by selecting them from your contacts list. On a Samsung Galaxy S III this involves tapping the group then the add contact button and picking from the full contact list.

Step 4 Group SMS Android thumb - How to send group texts on an Android Smartphone

Step 5.

Go to the messaging app, tap the contacts icon, pick your group and then either Select All or make specific choices for a subset. Tap Done and you return to the messaging app where you can add more recipients or type and send your message.

Step 5 Group SMS Android  thumb - How to send group texts on an Android Smartphone

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How to shrink the Galaxy Note 3’s display into a tiny window

We may live in a world of 6.3 to 6.4-inch smartphones, but the Samsung Galaxy Note 3’s 5.7-incher is still pretty big. And getting around it using only your thumb can be a challenge. Samsung has always offered “one-handed mode” software tricks on the Note series — for example, letting you shrink and rearrange the keyboard, dialer, and other areas for easier thumbing.

On the Galaxy Note 3, though, it’s taken this to an all-new level. The new “Use for all screens” option, found under “Settings > Controls > One-handed operation,” lets you shrink the entire display in to a moveable, resizable window a fraction of the screen’s true size. Crazy!

Once enabled, you can activate this “windowed” mode by swiping in an arrow shape from the edge of the screen. Most apps work just fine in this shrunken-down view, though some, including the camera, bump you back to fullscreen mode. The window snaps in whichever side you perform the gesture, and you can move it around and resize if you want.

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Tips and tricks for speeding up your Android device

Nexus 4 White 35517164 0550 610x435 - Tips and tricks for speeding up your Android deviceYou may have noticed over the past few months that your once-speedy Android device has slowed down considerably. Simple tasks such as switching between apps or returning home are proving more troublesome than before, and you are now experiencing lag in all the wrong places. Things don’t have to be this way, however.

These simple tips and tricks can help speed up your device and make it perform like new:

1. Uninstall or disable unused apps

Your device has a limited amount of internal storage and the less free space it has the slower it will perform. If you have filled your device with photos, music, or apps, it is recommended to free up space by either uninstalling unused apps or moving files to cloud storage services like Dropbox or Google Drive.

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Tips and Tricks to get the most out of your Samsung Galaxy S4

Got a Samsung Galaxy S4? Here’s a guide to get the most out of your phone.

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