Join Dan Gookin for an in-depth discussion in this video Exploring your Android device, part of Android Essential Training (2015).
- Whether it's a phone or tablet, all Android devices have similar features. This consistency provides an advantage to you, in that once you learn how to use your Android, you can be productive without having to learn new things all over again, but you have to start somewhere. In this movie, I'll introduce you to common features found on just about every Android phone or tablet. I'll show you how to turn the device on, turn it off, lock it, unlock it, and some other special tricks. On the front, you'll find the touch screen, which is not only the display, but an input device, reacting to your touches.
Some devices feature navigation buttons below the touch screen, such as the Home button, found on Samsung phones and tablets. Not really visible is the front facing camera, which is found above the touch screen. Android phones feature a speaker at the top center, which is where you place your ear, during a call. Around the device, on the edges, you'll find the Power Lock key, Volume key, headphone connector, the USB connector, speakers and a microphone.
You might also find a Micro SD card slot for removable storage and a Sim card slot which is used on cellular devices to connect to the Mobile Data Network. The back of the device features a camera, called the Rear Camera. The flash LED can be found next to the camera. To charge your Android, you connect the power cord to the USB connector, which is found at the bottom of the device. Connect the other end of the connector to the charging brick, and then plug that end into a wall socket.
The phone or tablet charges, whether it's on or off, and you can use the device while it's charging. You can charge it any time; there's no need to wait until the battery is completely drained. To turn on your Android, press and hold the Power Lock key. Keep holding until you feel the device vibrate, or you see a start up logo. At that point, you can release the Power Lock key. Eventually, the device starts. You need to work the Screen Lock to access the device.
The basic lock, is the Swipe lock. Touch the screen and drag it in any direction. If you see a Padlock icon, drag the Padlock outward. The device unlocks, and you can begin using it. Your Android stays on most of the time. When you're done using it or you need to set it aside, you lock the screen. Quickly press and release the Power Lock key. The device is now locked. While the device is locked, the touch screen no longer accepts input. The device continues to run, music plays, phone calls can come in, updates are made, and alarms can signal.
The device also saves power by being locked, so your Android locks itself automatically, after a given period of inactivity. This automatic locking is similar to when a computer enters sleep mode, when it's bored or ignored. To unlock the phone or tablet, quickly press and release the Power Lock key. Unlock the screen. More secure screen locks are available beyond the Swipe lock, applying those locks is covered in a later movie. Some devices feature Lock Screen apps; these allow you to quickly unlock the Android, and instantly run an app such as the Camera app, so you can quickly take a photo.
The technique for unlocking and running apps varies. On most devices, with lock screen apps, you unlock and run an app, by dragging that app icon across the touch screen. To turn off your Android phone or tablet, press and hold the Power Lock Key. You see the device Options Menu appear on the screen; choose Power Off. On some Androids, you'll see a confirmation prompt; tap the OK button to confirm and the Android turns itself off.
Turning the device off, isn't the same as locking it. When an Android is off, it no longer works; it won't receive phone calls, and alarms won't signal. In fact, it's rare to turn off an Android. Most of the time, you lock it instead as described earlier in this movie.
- Exploring basic Android operations
- Understanding the Home screen
- Connecting with Wi-Fi and Bluetooth
- Managing apps
- Creating contacts
- Receiving and sending email
- Handling phone calls and accessing voicemail
- Using Google Hangouts and Skype
- Browsing the web
- Taking photos and videos
- Getting directions and finding locations with the Maps app
- Making appointments and setting alarms and timers
- Managing file storage
- Extending battery life
- Monitoring data usage