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3 Things You Never Knew Your Phone Could Do

13th December 2018

We’ve seen some great new phones in 2018; Samsung’s Galaxy S9 and Galaxy Note9, Google’s Pixel 3 XL and of course, the iPhone Xs and Xs Max.

With new technology comes exciting new features, but it’s impossible to know every single trick. At 8020, it’s important our customers get the most from their phones, to improve the way they work each day. So, we’ve picked out some of our favourite new phone features from 2018 across Samsung, Apple, Huawei and Google.

Samsung Galaxy

Multi-task with Split Screen

You can split the screen on your Samsung Galaxy to view two apps at the one time. On your Multi-Window menu, ensure Split screen view action and Pop-up view action are switched on. Open the first app and then press and hold the recents button to activate Multi-Window. Select a second app from the list of recent apps and then resize both windows by dragging across the middle line.

One-Handed Mode

For ease of use, Samsung allows you to enter what they called One-Handed Mode. This decreases the size of the screen to allow you to use your phone with one hand. To switch on, open Settings > Advanced features > One-Handed Mode and then select your activation gesture.

Manually Control Aperture

This feature is unique to the Galaxy S9 and Note9. The Dual Aperture camera will adapt to the environment it’s in whether that’s very sunny or very dark. However, you can adapt it manually. Open Camera > Swipe right on the viewfinder to open Pro Mode > Tap the Aperture and Shutter Speed icon > Tap the button showing Aperture to adjust.

Apple iPhone

Customised Grouped Notifications

Apple introduced us to iOS 12 back in June and with it a bunch of new features. One of them was Grouped Notifications. Not only can notifications be deleted in bulk, by long pressing (holding down) on a notification you’ll see two options; Deliver Quietly and Turn Off. Deliver Quietly will put a notification straight to the Notification Centre without alerting you and Turn Off will stop you receiving notifications from that app altogether. Useful if unimportant or annoying apps are constantly causing your phone to buzz.

Set App Limits

Screen Time is a new feature of iOS 12 that helps you monitor how long you spend on your phone each day. In that, there’s the option to set App Limits to help cut down on the amount of time you spend on a particular app each day, Snapchat for example. To set, open Settings > Screen Time > App Limits and select a category of apps to set limits on and click Add. Don’t worry though, you can still ignore the limit reminder and continue using the app for as long as you wish.

Do Not Disturb

Bedtime is an interesting new feature of Do Not Disturb that switches on additional features at the same time each night. Bedtime will dim the screen, silence calls and send all notifications to the Notification Centre until scheduled Do Not Disturb ends. Say between 11pm and 6am every day.


Always on Display

This cool feature allows a display on the Home Screen even when the phone is inactive. To turn on, swipe down from the top of the Home Screen > Open Settings > Home Screen & Wallpaper > Always on Display.

Quick launch

There’s also a quick launch menu from the Lock Screen. Swipe up from the bottom to show a small menu of quick launch options.

Screen Record

This is a great feature and one Samsung has really been lacking in recent times. Simply press and hold the power button and volume up key. The video will save in Files > Videos like any other video.

Google Pixel

Screen Your Calls

If you receive a call from an unknown or suspicious number, you can choose to have Google Assistant screen the call for you by hitting Screen Call. Google Assistant will answer for you and reply, “Hi, the person you’re calling is using a screening service from Google and will get a copy of this conversation. Go ahead and say your name, and why you’re calling.” You’ll see then their message on screen, at which point you can decide whether to answer, reply or report as spam.

Quick Switch Camera

Another cool feature of the Pixel 3 is the quick switch Flip Camera feature. If you need to quickly switch from rear-facing camera to front-facing selfie mode, twist your wrist twice and your camera should switch. To make sure this feature is on, open Settings > System > Gestures > Flip Camera.

Customise Quick Settings

To customise your Quick Settings menu, pull down from the top with two fingers and hit the pencil icon in the bottom right of your screen. Tap and move apps and icons as you see fit.

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