Skip to main content

The LG G5 had a huge, controversial missing feature. Now it’s back

Andy Boxall/
The LG G5 has Android 6.0 Marshmallow installed, but controversially, LG’s own user interface placed over the top of the operating system didn’t include the familiar app drawer. The feature, where a convenient list of all installed apps could be found, is used on the vast majority of Android smartphones, and familiar to many seasoned owners. Although there was a way around it, its removal caused annoyance.

Now, through a software update on its way out to G5s all over the world, the app drawer is back, proving LG listens to its customers. It’s a small update to the Home screen settings page, and found through the G5’s app update system. Rather than permanently add the app drawer, it’s available as a third option, giving you the chance to set the G5 up exactly how you want it.

Here’s how it works. To make sure the update has been applied, go to Settings, General, About Phone, and Update Center. Here, tap App Updates and download any that are waiting. The one you’re looking out for is called Home and App Drawer, and it’s about 18MB in size. Once this is done, exit and go to Settings, Display, and Home screen. Now, choose Home and App Drawer, and tick the Use As Default App box if you want to stick with the change permanently. You’ll be asked to select which Home screen option again, out of Home, EasyHome, and Home & App Drawer.

That’s it. Return to the home screen and the app drawer will have made its triumphant return. Why did LG follow companies like Huawei and ZTE in relegating the app drawer to the trash? There are rumors Google will do the same with the next version of Android, and it was preparing us all for the change over. We may learn more about whether this will happen or not during Google I/O, the developer conference set for May 18.

Editors' Recommendations

Andy Boxall
Senior Mobile Writer
Andy is a Senior Writer at Digital Trends, where he concentrates on mobile technology, a subject he has written about for…
Kyocera’s DuraSport 5G makes me miss the Galaxy S8 Active
The Kyocera Durasport 5G can survive cold temperatures.

Years ago, when Samsung discontinued its line of rugged flagship phones, I felt like the world had lost a great opportunity. By then, the trend toward glass sandwiches had started, and it felt like every phone you carried had to have a case lest it slide off the table or shatter when dropped (or both). The Samsung Galaxy S8 Active was the last of the rugged flagships that made it possible to own a great smartphone that still looked good and didn't necessarily need a case.

Since then, the rugged smartphone space has overcompensated by putting protection at a premium while seemingly going cheap on the internals. You can buy a phone like the Kyocera DuraSport 5G that can drive a nail into plywood, but can you play Call of Duty on it? That's the main question I attempted to answer during my time with the device, along with the issue of looks.
Fashionably rugged
The Kyocera Durasport 5G is a slim, and nice-looking (if a bit plain) smartphone that is extremely understated. It can withstand drops into muddy water and survive the follow-up rinse, but it just looks like a standard smartphone. It's one that would fit just as well into a tool belt as it would the inside pocket of a suit. You don't need to put a case on it because it's not slippery and the phone is designed to withstand any abuse that would typically necessitate a case. It lets you carry your naked phone with pride.

Read more
How to turn off 5G on a Samsung phone
Samsung Galaxy S21 Ultra

It doesn't feel like a long time since Samsung introduced its first 5G phone, the Galaxy S10 5G. Flash forward to today, and you'll find 5G connectivity across many Samsung phones, from the top-end Galaxy S21 range to foldables like the Galaxy Z Fold 3, right down to the less-expensive A71 5G and A51 5G models.

Although 5G networks are expanding, there are still plenty of places where it isn't yet as robust as 4G -- so those accelerated connection speeds can be spotty, for now. Connectivity depends not only on your 5G carrier, but your location too -- Verizon, T-Mobile, and AT&T all offer 5G network coverage in the U.S., but it's still best around major cities and metro areas. Still, choosing a phone that supports the next-generation network is a sure-fire way to future-proof your new device.

Read more
The 5 best apps to test your 5G connection on Android and iOS
5g super bowl marketing weird verizon speed test

So you've picked up one of the best 5G phones (or one of the cheapest 5G phones), and you're ready to give this whole 5G thing a whirl. Except, well, how do you know you're getting the full benefit of 5G? Sure, the little "5G" symbol pops up sometimes, but what's the actual impact of that? Are you really getting your faster 5G speeds? Or, if you live outside of a 5G area, where should you go to experience the next big mobile network?

Whether you're after a tool to put your new 5G connection to the test or a map that shows you where to go to access your 5G network coverage, here's a list of the best apps to test your 5G connection on Android and iOS.
Meteor by OpenSignal

Read more