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18 ways to get the most out of Android 5.0

JR Raphael | Feb. 10, 2015
Got Lollipop? Then these tips and tricks will help you handle Android 5.0 like a pro.

Tip No. 13: Share your device with guest mode
Want to let someone use your phone or tablet without gaining access to all your stuff? Try Lollipop's new guest mode. Swipe down twice (or swipe down once with two fingers) from the top of your screen to access the Quick Settings panel, then tap the user icon in the upper-right corner of the screen. Select "Add guest" from the menu that appears, and voilà: Your device will switch to a new profile in which all basic functions are available but none of your apps, data, or settings is accessible.

To exit guest mode, mosey back into the Quick Settings panel, tap the user icon, and tap "Remove guest." Enter your security code, and you'll be back at home in your own regular profile.

Tip No. 14: Keep guests from making calls
If you want to create a more limited guest mode for your phone in which someone could get online but not make calls, head into the Users section of your system settings and tap the gear icon next to Guest. Tap the toggle next to "Allow phone calls," and the function will be disabled. (Guest mode already prohibits a user from accessing any phone-based text messaging, so there's no need to worry about that.)

Tip No. 15: Screen-pin to share access to a single app
For an even more limited way to let someone else use your phone or tablet, take Android 5.0's new screen-pinning feature out for a spin. First, go into the Security section of your system settings and select the option labeled Screen Pinning to activate it. Once it's active, tap your device's Overview button (the rectangular icon at the bottom of the screen, next to the Home key) and scroll upward with your finger.

Tap the green pushpin icon on the bottommost card and confirm that you want to start screen pinning. Be sure to select the "Ask for unlock pattern before unpinning" option.

That'll lock your device to your most recently used app or process so that someone can access it and nothing else -- if, say, you wanted to let a friend make a call or look something up in Chrome but didn't want them to be able to open anything else. In order to exit screen-pinning mode, you'll need to touch and hold the Overview button and enter your security code to continue.

Tip No. 16: Cut down on Overview clutter
Speaking of the Overview function, Lollipop allows you to have every individual browser tab appear as a card in the Overview list instead of as a traditional tab within Chrome itself -- but you don't have to use it that way. If you'd rather have your tabs be managed within Chrome, open up the Chrome app on your Android 5.0 phone or tablet, tap the overflow menu icon, and select Settings. Select "Merge tabs and apps" from the list that appears, then simply tap the toggle to turn it off.


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