Finally, I grabbed the new Android 6.0 Marshmallow Update, after waiting for a long time (or so it seems), and the very first thing I got engaged in? Finding out all the new, hidden, surprising features the update has to provide! Yeah, after a week long journey of my challenging expedition (phew), I finally succeeded in gathering many of them! Cutting short my elaborate account, let’s jump to the point.
True to its name, Marshmallow Update is sweet, giving much more options in each settings to the users, empowering them with nearly everything they could ask for, while customising their device. Less attention has been on User Interface (UI) this time, focusing more on ensuring the security and simplicity in the life of the user. So go ahead, play around with your smartphone, make it look and work according to your desires (and think of yourself as smarter in the process!)
- File Manager introduced : Finally, Thank God, hearing the prayers of all the users (especially Nexus users), a much awaited, much more needed, in-built File Manager is introduced! Some users who already possess the upgrade are about to get shocked! Are you surprised? Why haven’t you found it yet in your phone? Before you call me insane, head over to Settings -> Storage & USB and look for ‘Explore’ option visible at the bottom of the screen. There you go, thank me later, once discovered it is extremely useful and convenient to all types of users!
- Individual app permissions : I always wanted to hide some of my phonebook contacts from Facebook, but allowing WhatsApp to use them (ironic enough?). Did you wish the same? Then, a happy news for you! Marshmallow now lets you do this with the new App Permission Settings. There are two ways for this; head over to individual apps and modify the settings, or simply go to Settings -> Apps -> App Permissions, ensuring you can choose now which particular data can be accessed by an application on your smartphone.
- Network Restrictions : Any metered connections can now be treated as cellular, means no more hogging of data by the applications. In contrast to the previously available feature of setting data limit, users can now set data limit for individual apps! See? Nice, isn’t it? Also, user will be warned of any large data downloads by these apps prior to the download starts. To utilise this feature, simply go to Settings -> Data Usage, select ‘Network Restrictions’ from the ‘3-dot’ menu and simply choose the connections for which you want background data to be restricted!
- Google Now : Anything you wanna search is now just a tap away! Google Now provides information by ‘intelligently’ picking up keywords from any active screen. Your smartphone just got smarter, to test this, simply go to Settings of your Google App, tap on ‘Voice‘ and enable ‘Now on Tap‘ option, thats it, now you just have to long press your ‘Home Key’ and see the magic!
- Enhanced System UI controls : Although one of the toughest to find, this is one of the most adorable features of all. Now you can modify the User Interface according to your style, hide particular items (such as Bluetooth or Alarm) from the status bar permanently, add or remove tiles from the ‘Quick Settings Panel’ and much more! Again, before you ask me why you don’t see it yet in your device (and some will label me totally insane), let me tell you the trick to get this working. Go to Quick Settings Panel, Long Press the ‘Settings’ icon (the Gear one on the top right of screen) until this icon begins to rotate. Upon releasing it, you’ll see a success message. Now, the option is visible in your phone settings! Hush, don’t let your siblings/friends find it out, and show off your smartness! Cool isn’t it?
- Setting default apps for web links :
Have you ever wished for a link on your browser to directly open it in the required app? For instance, while browsing on your Chrome, you come across an Amazon link your friend shared, but you want that link to open up straight in app on clicking, so here’s another wish granted from the Genie called Marshmallow! Move to Settings -> Apps, then click on the gear icon on top right of screen and select ‘App links’. This will help you customise all the links you want. In previous versions, although the feature of opening link via apps was present; but not to such customisable extent.
- Set Default apps for phone, SMS, browser, voice etc. : In case you posses mutiple browsers, you can now set a default one as per your choice. The default applications can now be set for even these regular tasks, such as phone dialer, SMS, Assitant as well as Voice Input. Want a better voice assistant than the preset Google one? Head over to PlayStore, and simply find better ones.
- Simultaneous Wifi and Mobile Data : Some professionals are worried about the delay in network switching time or cannot accept any loss in connection even for a second (because of video calls, conferences etc.). Also, regular users who don’t like to lose a a single moment being online (or continuing downloads, video streaming) are in luck! Keep your mobile data and Wifi on simultaneously and say goodbye to disconnected periods, as the network switching time is almost zero. Don’t worry about your mobile data, even though it stays on, it shall not be used till wifi is available. To use this feature, you first need to enable developer options. For those who know already how to enable it, Great, those who don’t, you will know now! Go to Settings -> About phone. Here you’ll see alot of information. Find the ‘Build Number’ detail and simply tap quickly 10 to 12 times on this ‘Build Number’. A success message will be displayed (saying you’ve become a developer, Congratulations, guys and girls!) and now you have ‘Developer Options’ accessible. Now go to Settings, under the ‘System’ section, you should see ‘Developer Options’. Enter, and you shall find various sections. Look for ‘Networking’ section and enable ‘Cellular data always active’ feature. That’s it.
Falling in love with your sweet Marshmallow? Just don’t end up eating it. There’s much more to find out, experiment yourself (you have Developer Options now!) and maximise the pleasure out of your Smartphone. Got more tricks or found something new? I would be really glad to hear you out! Always here for you, YourTechSage!