You have fallen into temptation. You just bought your first Android smartphone. Good decision. But now what? Although the latest versions of the Google operating system have improved significantly in terms of accessibility and ease of use compared to the first editions, it is possible that if you arrive from another platform it takes some time to adapt to your new phone. Therefore, in this guide you will learn everything you need to know to start with Android.
It is likely that you have already begun to explore through all the menus and corners that your brand new Android hides in search of all the options that hides what will be your travel companion during -at least- a few months. But if you really want to start using Android as a professional, today we give you a series of tips to follow to start from scratch to use your new operating system.
How to start with Android, step by step
The first, become a Google account
This step is simple: if you have a Gmail account, or have used a Google service like YouTube, you probably already have a Google account and do not need to create a new one. In that case, all you have to do is log in with your account the moment you start the phone for the first time.
In case you do not have an account yet, you can do it in a simple way from the system start wizard, which will appear the first time you start the phone when setting some of the initial parameters. Remember that this account will synchronize all the apps you buy on Google Play, the emails and the configuration of your device, among other things, so you should use a sufficiently secure password, and above all, remember it or store it in a safe place as a password manager.
Download essential applications
Before going crazy and downloading each and every one of the applications that appear on the cover of Google Play -of which you probably end up eliminating half, the most advisable thing is to install only those essential ones, which you know you are going to use every day, or almost, and from that moment, start exploring through the different categories of the Android application store.
Obviously, the preferences of each one will depend on their habits or on the tools they are most used to using, but this list can be useful for most users:
Social networking apps
Tools and tools apps
Pass the data of your old mobile
Now that you have some apps installed, it’s time to pass all the data from your old mobile to the new one. There are many ways to do it, which you can see in our guide on how to pass data such as images, messages, contacts and much more to a new mobile.
Keep in mind, though, that some files such as the configuration of certain applications, the apps that you have bought in other platforms, the alarms of the clock and other elements, can not be stored and therefore it will not be possible to transfer them to the new phone.
Check for available updates
Another aspect that you should familiarize yourself with when you start from scratch with Android are the system updates. Even if you have heard that Android has a problem in this aspect, if you have purchased a relatively recent terminal you will receive updates frequently – or else, for the next time you know which manufacturer you should not buy an Android phone again. Although it will depend on the brand, these are the types of updates that you will probably receive on your mobile.
- Main system updates: these are the most important updates, which update the device software from an old version to a new one. For example, to move from Android 7.0 to Android 8.0.
- Minor updates: they incorporate solutions of specific errors, or new features such as system applications created by the manufacturers themselves.
- Monthly security updates: these are updates developed every month by Google and its partners aimed at solving vulnerabilities and security problems, which are then offered to manufacturers to send them to their phones.
To check if there are new updates to install, just access the System Settings and under the System Updates section, check if there is any OTA-update that is sent “over the air” – available.
Get rid of what you do not need
Although less and less, manufacturers of Android smartphones tend to include in their terminals own applications that, in most cases you will never use, or that can even be duplicated with the native tools of Android. Luckily, in the Google mobile platform it is easy to eliminate or disable those applications and add-ons that you are not going to use.
You just have to go to the System Settings and in the Applications section select “Show system applications” so that all those that have been included by the brand appear. To begin, you must bear in mind that some of them can not be disabled because they are necessary for the proper functioning of Android. Others, however, can be eliminated without major problems.
Keep your mobile safe
PIN, password, pattern, fingerprint, facial unlocking… on Android you can choose from a multitude of types of locking systems to keep your device safe. It is highly recommended that you choose one of them, in case someone takes your mobile phone without permission or you lose it, they can not access the contents of the phone.
In order to configure a secure locking method, you must access System Settings and within the Security and Screen Lock category, select and configure one of the available systems.
But that is not all. If you really want your brand new smartphone to be totally safe in case of loss or theft, the best option is to use the Find my device or Android Device Manager application. Thanks to this app, you can geolocate your mobile in case of loss, block it or delete all its contents.
Now that you have configured the basic parameters, you can start enjoying Android and all the options offered by what is currently the most used mobile operating system in the world. From here, you can research the thousands of customization capabilities that the system has, or browse among the thousands of applications and games for Android that exist on Google Play. And when you are familiar with all corners of the operating system, it will be time to delve into the worlds of root, ROMs and other concepts of the most advanced Android.