Top 10 android setup tasks

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Top 10 Android Tips / Setup tasks:

    • Import contacts:
      • Export contacts to CSV, import to Gmail contacts.
      • Sign in to your phone with your Google account, if you haven’t done that yet.
      • Browse to Contacts>Settings>Display options>Select “Only contacts with phones”, and also Google>Manually select all groups. Then sync.
      • While you are at it, use the Email app to setup your school/office email too. Use IMAP or Exchange settings to ensure that email read status is synced to your phone.
      • Install Google Keep and sync your todo lists and notes.
    • Facebook and Twitter:
      • Install the Facebook and Twitter apps.
      • Select to import data on your existing contacts. Pictures and other address data are the automagically added to your contacts.
      • Set Facebook and Twitter to update once every 4 hrs to prevent your friends from draining your battery. The Facebook sync setting could be in Settings>Accounts or in the app itself
    • Home screen:
      • Install ADW launcher to get a better home screen.
      • Select ADW launcher to open by default when the Home button is pressed.
      • Set the number of screens to 3 and apps to scroll vertically. Thats feels a lot better on phones with large screens.
      • Set desktop rows to 5. There’s a lot more screenspace on large screen phones.
      • Select fade app labels for some nice animation.
      • If you want to reset the launcher for any reason, browse to Settings>Manage apps>ADW launcher> Reset defaults.
    • Home screen widgets:
      • Install Beautiful widgets, one of the best Time and Weather widgets.
      • Try out some clock skins and pick the one you like.
      • Tap on Time to open alarm, Date to open calendar and Weather to open a nice animated weather widget.
      • Galaxy S phones have the WiFi, Bluetooth, GPS, 4G, enable/disable buttons in the notification area, but you might want to place Power Control, an android standard widget, on your home screen and have better control over your battery.
      • If you are disabling the GPS, enable Geo location using WiFi to retrieve current location without sacrificing battery power.
    • Get your phone back if you loose it:
      • Enable the security pattern in settings,
      • Add a note in settings to show your name and backup phone number on the lock screen.
      • Setup Google Voice if needed
      • Add your email to the note on the lock screen.
      • Also, enable Latitude in maps to track the location of your phone.
    • Change phone settings automatically:
      • Install Timerrific
      • There are apps that use GPS or phone battery levels to change settings automatically, like Tasker and Power Manager
      • Timerrific is better though. It changes settings based on time/day and is nice to the battery.
      • Now you can set the phone to vibrate at office/school and turn off WiFi when not at home.
      • While you are at it, install No Signal Alert, so you don’t miss important calls. Your phone will let you know if it looses signal.
    • Don’t type, scan (or write):
      • Install the Barcode Scanner app
      • Scan any barcodes you see on the web or elsewhere using Barcode Scanner.
      • The app works on Google Product Search too, all you have to do is browse to it on you phone and click on the “Scan Barcode” button. Now you can compare prices on the go.
      • The Chrome to Phone extension is very nice too. Just install an extension in chrome to send anything to your phone.
      • If typing is too hard, just try Graffiti for Android. It lets you write instead of typing.
    • Other must have Apps:
      • Music, News and TV apps are always a must.
      • Pandora, Slacker radio or Last.FM: Free personalized radio
      • NYtimes: Award-winning journalism of The New York Times
      • NPR: Listen to NPR shows
      • TV shows from CBS, The CW, CNET, ET, Showtime, CBS News, CBS Sports and much more!
    • Last but not the least change your ringtone:
      • Android comes with some nice ones, you can create your own too.
      • Install Ringdroid. Copy any MP3 to your SD card to edit and set it as your Ringtone.
      • You can assign a specific ringtone to a contact too.

These top 10 android setup tasks should get you started with your new phone. Don’t forget to follow @androidtips or via email.

A few random Android Phone Pictures: .

Posted in Help & Tips, HowTo, Showcase
30 comments on “Top 10 android setup tasks
  1. droid says:

    Battery life:Lasts an entire day with rigorous use and wifi/4G radio turned on when needed. An additional battery, $20-$40 highly recommended though.

  2. droid says:

    Speaker: Very loud and clear. Movies or music play along nicely in the park.

  3. droid says:

    Screen in sunlight: Comparable with back-lit LCD screens. Usable when brightness turned up.

  4. Marvin Curry says:

    Can you set a custom ringtone for your emails on the Epic phone

  5. Roger says:

    How do I set the android to use my home wireless router to save MB’s and for updates?

    I don’t see that in the manual. Unless I missed it.


  6. Ron Linegar says:

    I have had the Nexus One for about 3 months. Everything has worked great, until about a week ago, it just quit sending/receiving SMS. I did the *#*#4636#*#* and the SMSC was blank, but when I did a refresh, the right AT&T number comes up. I then did a update, but still cannot send/rec. Is there anything you can suggest to help? thank you!

  7. dawn says:

    I will like to know what ever happened to the oovoo for the epic 4g phome? I had it on the market downloaded it…a week later took the phone to the store to see if I needed an update (which I didn’t) now I’m trying to re-install the oovoo but it isnt in the android market no longer???

  8. wanto says:

    Hey Friend. Thank you a lot of for your guide

  9. Mike says:

    Thanks for your guide. I am new to droids. LG Ally. Many of my contacts phone numbers begin with *82 to present my caller ID. However, no matter how I try to import, the asterisk (*) is dropped and consequently won’t dial, unless I manually ADD *82 to each contacts phone. I have over 700 contacts. Is there any way you know to maintain the asterisk (*) in the import? Thank you.

  10. dan theman says:

    Top 10 could easily be substituted with one instruction: obtain superuser privileges (aka flashing, rooting, installing custom ROM, etc)

  11. Donald says:

    Hey there everybody. I do agree that someone purchasing an android phone needs to get an extended battery (if available) otherwise all the wonders the android system does will drain your battery in 2 hours!! There are several ways to manage your apps. You can download a free task manager that probably will take more from your juice, or go menu-apps- app settings. It will tell you all that is running and processes that are running. You can learn more at if you anybody is interested.

  12. Olemis Lang says:

    Interesting article indeed. Thanks for sharing.

    Firstly I just wanted to suggest Eyes Free Project. It’s great for having better hands-free relationship with your phone ;)

    On the other hand, does anybody know of an application (working on Android 2.2 Froyo) able to use speech recognition system to write text into input fields rather than typing (keyboard, handwriting, …) ? If it can be installed as an input device, well, much better ;)

    Finally I’d also like to know of a book (PDF, ODF, DOC, …) reader able to read text using text-to-speech engine; or any other equivalent solution

  13. Theresa says:

    I just got my first Android, a Droid Bionic, so I am a total newbie. I am trying to find a way to “find”/”search” for items/keywords on my Droid. On my Ipod I can type in a keyword and it would look within all applications (mail/calendars/docs etc.) I can not seem to figure out how to do it on the droid. Any suggestions?

  14. yogesh says:

    hey nice article dude…. i came across one more article just click

  15. WWJD says:

    I am a new Samung Galaxy Precedent owner & it is taking long time to learn how everything works, so I thank all of you for your tips. Thanks & God Bless all of you.

  16. Asif says:

    I want to block a number for sms and call. how can I block in samsung galaxy y st-g5360 without using any Apps.

  17. Hameed Haji says:

    I have installed who is calling application on my mobile, then i was shocked to see that anyone call me and his name is not listed in my directory, I get his name displayed (CLI) on my mobile.
    I need to know how does it work and which database the name is catched.
    Pls send me full details to mey email above and your help is hihgly appreciated.

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