Getting The Most out of Your Cell Phones

Mobile phones are going to be here for a while. At the risk of writing a post that will be useless in a few years, here are some thoughts on helping you stay in control. Make the phone act like a tool that is invisible unless you need to use it.

  1. Immediately after installing a new app, go into settings. Look around a bit to see what things they allow you to control. Since useful instructions rarely come with apps, this is sometimes the only way (other than web searching the app) to find out what features there are.
  2. Control your notifications. Almost every app has a Settings option. Under settings, there is almost always a Notifications options. Turn off all notifications. Everything. There should only be a few things (text, maybe email) on your phone that actually make a sound or vibrate.
  3. Web search the name of your new phone and look for tips and tricks in the results. You might find a few things you didn’t know.
  4. Set security. Swiping to unlock is not the best idea. Depending on your phone, there are lots of options. Learn what they are and pick one that seems the best for you.
  5. If something frustrates you about your phone, chances are there is a way to make it better. Web search for your phone name and the problem. It may require that you learn something or change the way you do something. Sorry.

I believe that a big part of keeping your phone invisible is controlling when the phone tries to get your attention. You decide when you want to interact with your phone, not the phone. Setting the security to what works for you and protects you, allows you to get into your phone quickly.

Do you control your technology or does it control you?