Galaxy S7 tips and tricks

Master your Samsung smartphone with these handy Galaxy S7 tips and tricks

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Camera, storage, and battery life

How to quick launch the camera

Samsung Galaxy S7
Samsung Galaxy S7 Jeffrey Van Camp/Digital Trends

The 12-megapixel camera on the S7 is lightning fast and a great performer in low light conditions, but how do you make sure that you don’t miss those spontaneous moments? Samsung’s quick launch function allows you to double tap the Home button to launch the camera. It works from anywhere, even if your S7’s screen is off and the phone is locked. It should be on by default, but if it doesn’t work for you, then open up the Camera app and tap the cog to access Camera settings, then toggle on Quick launch.

How to take a screenshot

Taking a screenshot on your Galaxy S7 is easy. Simply press the Power and the Home buttons down together and you’ll hear the capture noise and see a wee animation indicating that it has worked. Alternatively, take a screenshot by swiping the edge of your palm across the screen, but you’ll have to turn this feature on via Settings > Advanced features > Palm swipe to capture.

Another option in that Advanced features menu worth checking is called Smart capture. Turn it on and you’ll see icons pop up at the bottom of the screen when you take a screenshot. The plus icon enables you to capture more by scrolling down — handy for webpages — the Share icon is obviously for sharing via email or whatever, and the Crop button allows you to cut it down to size and save it in your gallery.

By default, all screenshots go into a separate album in your gallery app, helpfully named Screenshots.

How to take photos and video hands-free

Open up the camera and tap the cog to access Camera settings and you have the option of Voice control, which lest you take a picture by saying Smile, Cheese, Capture, or Shoot. You can also say Record video to, you guessed it, record video. Take a look in Ways to take pictures and you’ll find Gesture control which allows you to trigger a short countdown to a photo by holding your hand out with your palm facing the camera.

How to fit more into your selfies

S7_selfie

You can get a wider selfie shot to fit a crowd of people or a great backdrop into your photo by selecting the front camera and then swiping left to right to open the modes menu and choosing Wide selfie.

How to take better photos

S7 pro mode

If you know your way around a camera, then swipe left to right in the camera app and select Pro from the available modes. You can now change the ISO settings, white balance, aperture level, and more. The Auto mode is generally very good, but some people will appreciate the ability to tweak.

How to boost your storage

You can check remaining storage via Settings > Device maintenance > Storage. You can choose to clear space, or you can tap the three vertical dot menu at the top right and choose Storage settings to get the usual Android breakdown. If you tap Cached data in here, you can delete it to clear space.

If you slide the SIM card tray out, you’ll find there’s space for a MicroSD card, and the S7 can take up to a 200GB card. Apps will be installed into internal storage by default, but go to Settings > Apps and tap on apps you’ve installed, then tap Storage > Change and you might find the option to Change storage location to SD card.

Make sure that your photos are being saved to your MicroSD card by opening the camera and tapping the cog icon to open Camera settings > Storage location and choose SD card.

How to save battery life

If you look in Settings > Device maintenance > Battery, you’ll find the option to analyze Battery usage and find out which apps and services are draining your power. There are two modes that help you save battery by cutting back on some S7 functions, the basic Mid Power saving mode is fairly unobtrusive or you can go for the Max power saving mode, which really cuts functionality and performance for emergencies.

There’s also a special Save power option that can put power guzzling apps to sleep. This will prevent them from getting updates until you open them again.

How to use Google Assistant

Google Assistant allows you to search for information, pose questions, and a lot more. All you need to do to launch it is long press the Home button on your S7. If it’s your first time using it, then you’ll be prompted to say “OK, Google” and teach it to recognize your voice. You can find out more in our guide to Google Assistant.

How to use Smart Lock

Having to enter a PIN or pattern, or even scan your fingerprint, to unlock your phone every time can be a pain, but in some situations, you still want the security. Smart Lock lets you set exceptions. Go to Settings > Lock screen and security > Secure lock settings > Smart Lock and you can set trusted devices, trusted places, trusted voice, or on-body detection. That means you can configure your S7, so that when it is connected to your Bluetooth headphones, for example, or your home Wi-Fi network, it will unlock automatically without the usual PIN.

How to take and end calls with hardware buttons

Samsung Galaxy S7
Jeffrey Van Camp/Digital Trends
Jeffrey Van Camp/Digital Trends

It can be quite handy to answer a call by pressing the Home button or end it by pressing Power, instead of having to use the onscreen controls. If you want to be able to do this, go to Settings > Accessibility > Answering and ending calls and toggle the options on.

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