Sony Xperia XA2 Tips and Tricks

Android 8 (Oreo)
Phone: Sony Xperia XA2
Factory OS: Android 8 (Oreo)

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Then view tips for the most recent OS version(s): Android 9 (Pie)
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A handy feature of Android is to quickly clear your notifications.

Simply pull down your notifications bar by swiping your finger from the top of your phone downwards.

Then when you see each individual notification, swipe your finger left or right to clear each one. You can do this with your Apps too – press and hold the multitasking button. Then swipe left or right to close Apps.

Sometimes you might want to let someone borrow your phone, but you don’t want them messing with your settings or using some of your Apps.

Fortunately there is now a mode called Guest Mode. It may not be available on all models or phones but it can be accessed by swiping two fingers down from the top of the phone. Then select the User icon at the top right of the phone. Then select Add Guest.

To exit guest mode, just repeat the above steps but select Remove Guest instead.

If you find that a particular App is sending you too many notifications, there is a quick way to disable these.

When you receive the notification, pull down the notification screen. Then long press on the notification, then Go to Settings/More Settings, from here you can turn notifications ON or OFF for that particular App.

There is no need to be stuck with the standard Android keyboard, which isn’t always great for typing quickly.

Go to the Play Store and search for ‘Keyboard’ to see some great alternatives, many of which are more accurate and make typing much easier.

One of the very best is SwiftKey. They provide a free trial, but once the trial is over it is well worth the small amount of money they charge. It can increase your typing rates massively.

Another good one is GoKeyboard.

If you see a warning saying the keyboard will collect all information (including credit cards) just ignore this. This is just a security feature that Android shows for every third-party keyboard that you install.

If you are abroad and don’t want to pay high data roaming charges or travelling to an area with no network coverage, then you can save Google Maps for offline viewing later. Here are two ways to do this:

The first method will depend whether your phone supports it. First, open Google Maps and navigate to a section of the map that you want available offline. Then press on the search bar and scroll right to the bottom and select Make this map area available offline. You may need to repeat this with multiple areas.

Alternatively, open Google Maps and zoom down to street level. Then scroll around area you’ll be travelling too. If you’re visiting a city for example, do this at street level and cover as much area as you think you’ve be visiting. If you’re travelling outside a city, then street level view might be too detailed, so zoom out and just cover the main roads, towns etc.

This will load all the segments into your phone’s cache. Then when have arrived at your destination and you have data turned off, you will see the areas you’ve stored on the phone’s memory.

Note: this won’t give you your GPS location because that normally needs a data connection to pinpoint your position.

At the bottom of each homescreen is your favourites tray, which consists of 5 icons. You can customise it by adding icons to the tray. If it’s full however, you will first need to remove some.

To remove an icon, simply press and hold an icon. Then drag it to your desktop.

Then to add a new one, simply drag an icon from your homescreen to the favourites tray.?

Here are the top 5 tips to make your phone run faster:

1) Use only essential widgets on your homescreen – each widget consumes memory and processing power which can slow your down your phone.

2) Uninstall apps that you don’t use – after awhile your phone can get cluttered as some Apps are designed to always run in the background. If you rarely use an App, then uninstall it to free up memory and CPU resource.

3) Install Apps to your phone memory – if you have an SDCard, always install Apps to the phone memory, which can be accessed faster. If you have Apps on the SDCard, then move them back to the phone memory with an App called Move2SD available from the Play Market.

4) Use Static rather than Live wallpapers – Live wallpapers consume processing power and memory. Unless you really must have them, uninstall them.

5) Kill tasks occasionally – Some Apps will run in the background indefinitely unless you kill them. Most of them won’t cause a problem, but it pays to check your running tasks from time to time. Hold down your Home key and check the Task Manager.

One last thing: Don’t use Task Killers. Android manages tasks very well and Task Killers just make your phone unstable and can slow it down further.

While viewing your list of Contacts you can swipe from Right to Left to send a text message to the selected contact.

This might not work on all models.

By default, your phone will recognise swear words, but insert x’s instead of the word. To change this, go to Settings – System – Language and input – Virtual Keyboard- Google Voice Typing

Then you may need to select your voice input system. Then toggle the Block offensive words option.

Android has an interesting new feature called Talkback which is designed for blind and low vision users.

The feature is an interesting way to navigate your phone however.

Simply go to Settings – Personal – Accessibility – Talkback to activate it.

Then your phone will give you an ongoing narration of its various functions.