New Smartphone? How To Rock It Like A Boss, Part Four – Dive In
Once you choose your hardware/operating system, try to avoid that overwhelmed feeling as you start dipping into smartphone culture. Remember, it’s your phone so you are allowed to go at your own pace. Just make sure you get the basics: unlocking your phone, answering and making calls, checking your voicemail, texting. This way no one can complain about being unable to reach you.
Take it up one notch at a time
First, resist the temptation to go loading your phone up with a bunch of downloads. There are often lots of trustworthy pre-installed apps. This means you can get to know ‘the app thing’ before downloading stuff that might overwhelm you, go unused, or trash out your phone. If you’ve already been in download mode for a while, take some time to go thru and uninstall any apps you haven’t used in the last week. Reducing app clutter will help as you get to know your phone all over again.
Second, get used to apps one-at-a-time. Avoid important things like banking or buying online and just start with the apps that help you do something fun like shoot and edit photos or surf the Web. Learn how to open an app, and, please learn how to close your apps! There is always someone who has every app they’ve used this week still open and running in the background. This drastically shortens your battery life and causes memory problems which can lead to system crashes. The method for closing an app is different between iOS and Android, so be sure to ask someone experienced with your operating system how to close your apps.
On the next page, we’ll dive into how to find the best apps for your phone.
Next, treat your little device as you would your desk at work or at home and get it organized so you know what is where. Save a few bookmarks on your Web browser. Android phones let you add “widgets” – shortcuts to certain functions and apps. And group similar apps together into folders to help reduce clutter on your screens. This will make it easy for you to learn your way around. Some examples of app groupings: Travel, Navigation, Fitness, Reference, Dining, Entertainment.
While there are similarities to how all smartphones are used, this blog is based on my iPhone experiences. Spend some time on the links below, and check with your smartphone retailer about workshops where you can get more one-on-one instruction. Some community colleges offer cheap, non-credit evening workshops on how to use your device.
The article below is a really, really good primer:
As you work on getting used to the phone and its basic features, learn basic housekeeping functions to make sure the phone doesn’t get ‘messy’ or maxed out. This will help make it easy to find your favorite app or feature, and lower the confusion factor. Learn how to regularly ‘sync’ your phone to your computer and do a back-up – and offload some of those photos and videos of your kids to free up space.
As you become more familiar with the device, it’s important to prioritize your next steps. Once you get a grip on the basics of keeping your phone ‘in shape’, you are ready to put it to work.