It’s well-established that the HTC One M8 is a good looking phone. It’s slick and sleek and totally ogle-worthy. But for as pleasant as it may be to look at the One M8, it’s just as much of a joy to use. If you’ve been hypnotized by the good looks of the device and you blanked out while watching tutorials or reading the manual, then we’ve got you covered with the best tips and tricks for putting your HTC One M8 to good use.
How to skip the lock screen
The lock screen is standard on any smartphone, but that doesn’t mean you have to deal with it. The HTC One M8 allows you to bypass the lock screen if you’d like. With the phone in Standby mode, swipe from right to left. This will take you to the default home screen. Swipe from left to right and you’ll be taken directly to BlinkFeed.
How to answer calls from the lock screen
Remember when phones were primarily for voice communication? You can still talk to people on the HTC One M8 like any phone, but you can do it quicker than ever. When you have an incoming call, swipe down on the the lock screen. This will accept the call and you can begin conversation.
Alternatively, if you’d rather not touch the screen with your fingers at all, you can simply hold the One M8 up to your ear. Doing so while the phone is ringing will answer the call. You can make sure this feature is on by going to Settings > Call > Auto Answer Call.
How to customize BlinkFeed
BlinkFeed is one of the signature marks of the HTC One M8’s Sense 6.0 user interface. It curates content for you from your social network accounts, local television listings, restaurant suggestions, and more. It’s a single stream customized for you, and you should be able to customize it a bit, too.
To drop BlinkFeed’s default theme and choose one of your own preference, head into the Settings tab. Find the Personalize menu and select Theme. Here, you’ll be able to switch between four themes – primary color options being green, purple, orange, and black — that will alter the BlinkFeed and top navigation bar colors along with accenting highlights.
How to use the HTC One M8 as your TV remote
The HTC One M8 is ready to not just be your primary mobile device, but to invade your living room as well. The Infrared blaster in the device and the HTC TV app allow users to turn the phone into a remote control for most model TVs and some set top boxes.
Open the HTC TV app on your One M8. The app will walk you through the setup process with various prompts to make sure your phone is communicating with your TV. You’ll want to make sure you’re in the same room as your television (duh) and should keep your old remote nearby just in case the phone needs to be programmed to duplicate the IR commands.
Hide bloatware and unwanted apps
Every smartphone from a carrier comes with a bit of bloatware. It’s a minor inconvenience, but one nonetheless. The HTC One M8 lets you hide these unwanted apps. Open up the menu in the app drawer and you’ll notice an option to Hide/Unhide specific apps. Select the ones you want gone from your app list and watch them disappear without having to deep dive into settings to disable them.
How to use Kid Mode
You’re likely the primary user of your HTC One M8 but if you have kids around, it can easily be turned into a quick and simple means of distraction. The One M8 comes with a feature designed specifically for the parent and babysitter segment of the population called Kid Mode.
To enter Kid Mode, hold down the Power Button on the phone and select the Kid Mode option when displayed on the screen. This will disable the features that you don’t want kids having access to, including making calls or browsing files on the device. To exit Kid Mode, you will have to enter the PIN number.
How to get more from the icon tray
The icon tray at the bottom of the Home Menu is standard on every Android device. It’s always there as you swipe through different screens and is usually reserved for your most-used applications. The HTC One M8 takes it a step further by keeping the icon tray on display even on the lock screen. If you have a missed notification in any of the apps on the icon tray, you can go straight into said app by tapping on the icon and swiping up.
You can get even more out of this convenience by adding app folders to the tray. Do this by dragging other apps onto already existing app positions. This will create a folder with the apps you have placed into the same spot on the tray.
How to Remove BlinkFeed
If you’re new to HTC devices, the Sense 6.0 User Interface can be a little confusing. It’s nothing like other Android experiences, with a feel all its own. This can be a very good thing if you like the UI, but if it’s just not your thing then it’s more annoying than convenient. BlinkFeed is the feature that stands out the most, but you can make it disappear completely if you don’t care for what it offers.
Head into the Settings for home pages by putting your thumb and finger on the home screen and pinching them together. Locate the BlinkFeed icon, then tap and hold on it. There’s an icon at the top of the screen to remove your selection. Drag BlinkFeed over said icon and once it turns red, let go. Poof! BlinkFeed is no longer greeting you on the home screen.
If you end up missing BlinkFeed, you can return it to your device by returning to the settings and tapping the BlinkFeed placeholder icon.
How to get to Quick Settings faster
Quick Settings are a handy way to make speedy changes to your phone without having to dig around in tons of menus to find the options you need. The most common way to access the Quick Settings is by pulling down the notification tray and tapping the Quick Settings icon, but we can get you there even faster.
Use two fingers instead of one to pull down the notification tray. This will bypass the extra tap within the tray and will take to straight to the quick settings.
How to enable Do Not Disturb Mode
Most of these tips and tricks help you get more use out of the HTC One M8. This one allows you to take a bit of a break. The phone is now equipped with a Do Not Disturb Mode that, when enabled, will prevent your phone from ringing, vibrating, or displaying the blinking notification light.
You can turn on the Do Not Disturb mode from the Settings menu by going to Sounds. And if you’re looking to modify your experience with the mode, you can change certain settings within the mode. You can even set specific times for your phone to turn to Do Not Disturb or set contacts who are an exception to the setting.
That’s all the HTC One M8 tips we have for now, but we will add new entries soon. Check out our full review of the device to learn even more about the phone and find out how to keep it protected with our list of favorite HTC One M8 cases.