It was Samsung’s Note series that pushed phablets into the mainstream, and it looks as though they’re here to stay. The Samsung Galaxy Note 5 is an excellent smartphone that can compete with the best of them, but it also offers a veritable feast of clever extras. Are you taking full advantage of the bountiful screen real estate? Have you unlocked the delights of the S Pen? These Galaxy Note 5 tips and tricks will highlight your phablet’s true potential.
Themes, Navigation, Camera, Split screen, and Screenshot
The first thing you’ll want to do with your new Galaxy Note 5 is to get it looking the way you want. Tap and hold, or pinch your fingers together on any open spot on your home screen, and you’ll bring up the customization menu at the bottom of the screen. You can choose the Wallpapers you want, set up your Widgets, or select Themes that will change the color, font, and standard app icons. You get a couple of themes by default, but you can find a load more via the Theme Store link.
You’ll also find the option to change your Screen grid size in here, so if you prefer larger icons go for 4 x 4, or if you like to cram as many as possible on screen at once go for 5 x 5.
How to streamline your navigation
Pull down the notification shade, and you’ll see icons in a row at the top. If you tap the Edit option, you’ll find that you can choose exactly which features and functions you want listed in that top row. Pick what’s important to you, so you can access them in a hurry. You can also choose whether to include the S Finder and Quick Connect options below the shortcut icons.
Another handy navigation shortcut worth editing to suit your needs is in Settings. You’ll see Quick settings at the top, and you can tap Edit at the top right and choose exactly what you want listed here. If you find yourself dipping into a specific menu a lot, then set it up to be one of your quick settings, and it will always be easily accessible at the top of your options. You can choose up to nine different settings to be listed here.
How to quickly launch the camera
If you want to boost your chances of catching that perfect shot on the spur of the moment, then you need to know about the quick camera launch option on the Note 5. Simply double tap the Home button anywhere, even when the screen is off, and it will launch directly into the camera app.
How to use split screen
The 5.7-inch screen on the Note 5 gives you a lot of space to play with. If you want to have two apps on screen at once, then hold down the multitasking or recent apps button at the bottom left below the display, and the screen will split in two, offering you a menu of apps to choose from. If you already had an app open, then it will stay open in the top half of the screen, and you can open something else at the bottom.
Tap the circle in the middle to switch the apps around, activate a drag and drop option to share something from one app to another, minimize an app, make the selected app full screen again, or close the split screen mode. If you choose to minimize an app, it will shrink to an icon and you can tap it to bring up a small, windowed version that can be resized and moved wherever you want.
How to take a screenshot
You’re spoiled for choice if you want to take a screenshot on the Note 5, because there are a few different ways to do it. The standard method is to hold down the Power button and the Home button until you hear the shutter noise and see the animation illustrating the screenshot capture.
You can also swipe the screen with your palm to capture a screenshot, as long as the gesture is enabled in Settings > Motions and gestures > Palm swipe to capture.
Your final option is to use the S Pen. Pull it out, select Screen write, and the Note 5 will take a screenshot that you can then share, save, or annotate if you want to. You’ll find all of your screenshots are put in their own Album in the Gallery section called Screenshots.