Most Android smartphones and tablets have several features in common, and the hardware buttons for Power and Volume fall into that category. Let’s see how they can be useful beyond their most obvious functions:
1. To ignore unwanted calls: If you can’t or don’t want to receive a certain incoming call, you don’t need to wait for your phone to stop ringing. Put the ringer on mute right away by pressing the Volume Down button all the way.
2. To print the active screen: Want to take a shot of your phone’s current screen to share with someone? It’s easy to do. Keep that specific screen in the foreground and press the Power + Volume Down buttons simultaneously. You’ll find the screenshot saved under Screenshots in the gallery.
Note that if you press either the Power or Volume Down button too soon, you’ll end up turning off the display or lowering the ringer volume.
@passy clicking Share is the easiest way to take a screenshot on Android so far. Maybe that’s the future ????
— Pau Tomàs (@PauTo) December 23, 2015
3. To unfreeze your phone: When your phone is acting up, restarting it usually brings it back to normal. With a frozen phone, you might have to go one step further and force it to restart. To do so, first hold down the Power + Volume Up buttons together to shut down the phone. Once the screen turns dark, power it back up as usual.
These instructions are applicable to a wide variety of Android devices, but the hardware buttons on your smartphone might function differently depending on its make and model. For example, on a Samsung Galaxy S6, you’ll need to press the Power and Home buttons together to take a screenshot. In case of such variations, refer to your phone’s manual for instructions.
Hahaha, someone at the office asked how to take a screenshot on Android and there were a thousand different responses. #UX
— Vincent Not Gogh (@vincentsautter) December 17, 2015
Does your Android device do things differently? Tell us how it works. Fellow readers with similar devices are sure to find that information useful!
Image Credit: Woman using smart phone by Balazs Kovacs Images via Shutterstock