What’s the best screen protector for Note 7?

The Galaxy Note 7‘s screen is covered with Gorilla Glass 5, one of the most scratch-resistant subtrates out there. But even the strongest glass can scratch, which is why it may be a good idea to invest in a screen protector.

Screen protectors and curved screens still aren’t really friends, and the “halo effect” runs rampant. But, if you don’t want to see your screen marked up any time soon, you should cover it up and put up with the halo.

Here are the best screen protectors for your Note 7.

IQ Shield LiQuidSkin

IQ Shield’s LiQuidSkin screen protector is one that employs the wet-install method, wherein you spray the heck out of the screen protector with the provided solution and it becomes as floppy as cooked ramen. This is perfect for a phone with a curved screen like the Note 7.

The wet screen protector will conform to the contours of the screen and even has a little stretch, so you can slap it on, make sure there are no bubbles, and ensure it’s covering absolutely everywhere it needs to. That being said, it won’t go all the way to the very edge of the screen, since it’ll just end up peeling up, thus creating the halo effect. It’s not the end of the world, just something to get used to.

The way IQ Shield protectors are manufactured is what makes them some of the best money can buy. Instead of being a bunch of layers of film slapped together, these protectors are a single layer of flexible, tough film that’s as good as other products with several layers.

This means you never lose touch sensitivity and it’ll stave of discoloration, since there aren’t as many layers absorbing light.

The application of the IQ Shield LiQuidSkin might be a bit involved, but it’s the best way to make sure that your Note 7′s screen remain pristine for years to come.

See at Amazon

Skinomi TechSkin

Skinomi’s TechSkin is another film screen protector that uses the wet-install method so that you apply a flexible layer of protection to your Note 7′s screen. It’ll resist scratches and won’t yellow over time like most TPU does.

The wet-install method helps to ensure that you won’t any air bubbles under the protector, which can harbor dirt that may, in time, scratch up your screen.

If you’re worried about the fact that TechSkin is a TPU film and not glass, fear not. Skinomi offers a lifetime replacement warranty, meaning that if it starts to peel, or you notice pits or scratches, just let Skinomi know and it’ll send you a replacement for free.

If you’re looking for a well-made, reliable screen protector with an unbeatable warranty, then check out Skinomi TechSkin.

See at Amazon

IQ Shield Matte

Some screen protectors can be far too shiny and produce an obtrusive glare that prevents you from seeing your phone outside.

IQ Shield Matte helps with your glaring problem with its anti-glare coating that lets your big beautiful screen shine through in broad daylight.

IQ Shield’s protectors comprise only one layer of tough, flexible film so that you never lose touch sensitivity or even really notice that there’s a screen protector on your phone at all.

If you want to protect your Note 7′s screen but can’t stand the glare that some protectors tend to produce, then IQ Shield Matte is definitely the way to go. You get a lifetime replacement warranty, and that wet-install method can’t be beat for phones with curved screen.

See at Amazon

Samsung Note 7 Screen Protector

Samsung might not have made screen protectors for previous Note phones, but on its website there is indeed an official screen protector.

The description doesn’t say much more than marketing speak, so we still don’t know if it’s going to be glass or film, but put money on it being a film protector, since (as mentioned) tempered glass and curved screens don’t get along.

Likely, if it’s made by Samsung, for a Samsung device, it probably fits nicely and precisely. I’ll give this an update once the screen protector is available for purchase, so check back!

See at Samsung

What’s on your Note 7?

Are you using a screen protector on your Note 7? Are you going to bother? Oh, and heed this advice:

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 | Posted by | Categories: Android |

How can I make my Galaxy Note 7 even better, right out of the box?

The Galaxy Note 7 is Samsung’s best phone ever, but it’s not perfect. Some of the out-the-box settings are a little strange, and others are downright frustrating. Here’s how you can make it the best possible experience — immediately!

Turn off the icon frames

We’re not sure why Samsung decided to jazz up its app icons with white frames, but in order to reach some sort of consistency it did the same thing with all the other icons, too. We’re not impressed. Turn off the icon frames and get back your zen.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap Display.
  3. Tap Icon frames.
  4. Select Icons only.

Alphabetize your launcher

Samsung maintains that your app drawer should be customized according to taste, but we think your app drawer should be alphabetized… for harmony. It’s easy to do it, too. Just remember that even after ordering the icons alphabetically, future app installs will append to the end of your app list, requiring you to perform the action regularly.

  1. Open the App Drawer.
  2. Tap the Menu button on the top right.
  3. Tap A-Z.

Change your keyboard

Samsung has improved its native keyboard quite a bit over the last few years, but it is still not very good at predicting what you want to say — especially if you’re a fast typer. On the Note 7, the Samsung keyboard disables autocorrect and predictive typing by default, and won’t underline misspelled words. Instead of fighting with it, install the Google Keyboard and be a happier person — and a more accurate typer.

  1. Open Google Play Store.
  2. Search for Google Keyboard.
  3. Tap on Install.
  4. Tap on Open.
  5. Follow setup instructions.

Set up Do Not Disturb

The Note 7 has a great Do Not Disturb function that allows you to set certain times of the day or night when the phone won’t produce sound or vibration when alerted. While you can activate DND manually, the best way to do it is to schedule it for right before you go to bed, and right before you wake up. It’s even possible to set it for certain days, so you can stay up late on weekends and still get notified.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap on Sounds.
  3. Tap on Do not disturb.
  4. Activate Turn on as scheduled.
  5. Change desired settings for Days, Start time, and End time.

Set up your Samsung Account

Yes, it seems unnecessary, and yes, it’s yet another account to sign into, but a Samsung account is increasingly important on a Galaxy device. For starters, it enables the new Samsung Cloud, which offers 15GB of free cloud storage and free backup of your contacts, calendar entries, photos, documents and more. It also facilitates the Secure Folder, powered by Knox, which is a great tool for storing confidential personal information within the phone.

You can set up your Samsung account when first setting up the Note 7, but in case you skip that step, you can do so anytime.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Scroll down and tap on Cloud and accounts.
  3. Tap on Accounts.
  4. Tap on Add account.
  5. Tap on Samsung account.
  6. Follow setup instructions.

Customize your Always On Display

Depending on the carrier and country you purchase your device, your Galaxy Note 7 may have its Always On Display turned on or off. Either way, the feature is worth investigating for its myriad features. Leaving it on indefinitely has a negative impact on battery life, while customizing it to show your calendar entries is incredibly convenient. The choice is yours.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap on Display.
  3. Tap on Always On Display.
  4. Slide switch to On (if necessary).
  5. Tap Layouts. Choose a content type and theme.
  6. Press back button.
  7. Tap Set schedule.
  8. Choose a Start and End time.

Set up your Blue light filter

One of the best new settings on the Galaxy Note 7 is its blue light filter, which cuts down on the sleep-affecting blue light generated from modern displays. The Note 7 goes even one step further and adds a Sunrise to Sunset toggle that enables the feature when the sun goes down and turns it off the following morning. It’s incredibly handy, and may just stave off that sleepless night.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap on Display.
  3. Tap on Blue light filter.
  4. Slide switch to On.
  5. Select Sunset to sunrise.

Use content scaling to fit more on the screen

The Galaxy Note 7 comes with a beautiful 5.7-inch QHD display, and one advantage of that high resolution is the ability to fit more on the screen at once — more text, more icons, and more images. But this denser content scaling is turned off by default, since for some people the text will be too small. Experiment with smaller content scaling and see if it makes sense for you.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap on Display.
  3. Tap on Content scaling.
  4. Select Small.
  5. Tap Done in the top right.

Set up the iris scanner to unlock your phone

The Galaxy Note 7 has one major feature its S7 counterparts don’t: an iris scanner. Not only are iris scanners inherently more secure than a fingerprint sensor, but it also works in situations your thumbs do not: when it is raining, or when your hands are sequestered inside gloves. Enable the iris unlock by letting the phone take a scan of your eyes, and learn to love unlocking a different way.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap Irises. Enter security code.
  3. Tap Continue. Follow instructions.
  4. Once setup is complete, press Turn on.
  5. Toggle Web sign-in and Verify Samsung account if desired.

Customize your Quick Settings

When you first pick up the Galaxy Note 7, especially after coming from an older Samsung device, you’ll quickly see that the software is different in subtle but important ways. One of those areas of change is the new Quick Settings menu, which is much simpler and easier to use. But it is still powerful, and very customizable. Here’s how to do it:

  1. Pull down the notification shade from top of the screen.
  2. Pull down again on the two horizontal lines to expand Quick Settings.
  3. Hold down on any icon for a second.
  4. Drag quick setting buttons to desired place.

There’s much more!

We’re just scratching the surface of what’s possible on the Galaxy Note 7, and we’ll have lots more tips and tricks for you to make the most out of your new phone in the coming days.

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 | Posted by | Categories: Android |

Apps don’t just happen. A trip to the Big Android BBQ Europe gave me a fresh perspective on how challenging it is to make great Android applications.

One of the best things about this job is meeting the incredibly smart people who make the devices we use great. I spent a large chunk of this past week in Amsterdam at the Big Android BBQ Europe getting to know some of the top European Android developers — the people responsible for making the great apps we all use every day — and learning how they do it.

I know just about enough about programming to get myself in trouble, but even I came away with a fresh appreciation for how much skill it takes to create apps for the billion or so Android phones out there. The quick version: It’s still a challenge to deal with the sheer breadth of variety in the Android world, especially when some types of phones don’t play by the rules. Nevertheless, Android is more accessible than ever for self-taught coders — in part because we all have devices, in part because mobile development is inherently easier to interact with than anything on a desktop. And the nuts and bolts of how devs create Android apps has changed significantly over the past year, and is sure to evolve further with new trends like Kotlin, wearables and desktop apps through Chrome.

For the longer version, we’re going to hear from the developers themselves. Starting this weekend, we’ll be running a new set of interviews with some of these incredibly talented developers, starting with Blendle’s Jolanda Verhoef. We’re following a similar structure each time, letting these people go freeform on some of the benefits and challenges of working with Android, how newbies can get started, and where it might all be going.

Look for a new interview every other day for the next couple of weeks.

Other quick hits for a working weekend:

  • I’m in New York this weekend for a few days to hang out with the AC team and hustle on some of the big plans we’ve got for the latter half of 2016. No spoilers yet, but we’ve got some fantastic things in the works.
  • I got to play around with the U.S.-spec Honor 8 in NY, ahead of next Wednesday’s European launch. (I’ll be there for the launch event in Paris.) We’ll have a review from Andrew in due course, but my tl;dr: A great phone that should significantly raise the profile of Honor in the U.S. There’s still some software wonk in EMUI (albeit way less than there used to be.) But it’s a solid product, and one that’s only going to get better once EMUI 5 and Nougat roll around.
  • We’re rapidly approaching IFA, the annual Berlin-based trade show that’s normally packed with exciting new Android stuff. We’ve got a good roundup of what to expect from this year’s show, which is looking like being dominated by new Android Wear smartwatches. (It’s about time.) Huawei’s going to be huge at IFA too — hopefully we’ll see what’s next from them in software.
  • Entering the Nougat era is going to be a big break from the usual Android release cycle. The new Android version should be dropping on Monday, making official the OS we’ve been seeing in preview form since March. Don’t expect any huge changes in this final release compared to the most recent dev. preview 5. But Nexus time this year (I’m thinking mid-late September) should be really interesting.
  • If you’re not following @androidcentral on Instagram, you’re missing out on a lot of fun behind-the-scenes stuff in our Instagram story.

That’s it for now. It’s going to be a crazy awesome next few weeks in Android, so keep it locked to AC!

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 | Posted by | Categories: Android |