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Sony Xperia 10 or 10 Plus: Key settings to change

Get excited for your Sony Xperia 10 or 10 Plus by getting it set up just right

If the allure of a Sony smartphone at a more affordable price has reeled you in, then you’ll be looking for ways to get the best from it. We have suggestions on the key settings you might consider changing to ensure your Sony Xperia 10 or 10 Plus is set up to suit you and working at its maximum potential. These suggestions for settings to change all apply to the Sony Xperia 10 Plus as well. Our first tip is to pick up one of the best Sony Xperia 10 cases to protect your new companion.

Set up Side Sense

The Sony Xperia 10 is tall and thin compared to other phones, but it could prove tricky to manage one-handed. That’s even more true of its larger sibling, the Xperia 10 Plus. Sony has considered this and provided a couple of handy options to make things easier. The main one is Side Sense, which you’ll find in Settings > Display > Advanced > Side Sense. It will probably be on by default, showing as a bar at the side of the screen which you can easily tap with your thumb to open a shortcut menu of apps. You can specify the apps you want in the settings, tweak the sensitivity, and customize the look of the bar and the menu it triggers.

Turn on one-handed mode

Another feature that makes it easier to handle the Sony Xperia 10 or 10 Plus with just one hand is the One-handed mode, found in Settings > Display > Advanced. It should be on by default, but if not, turn it on now. You can trigger it by double tapping the home button and then use the arrows to customize the positioning and size. You’ll also find a shortcut to one-handed mode in the Side Sense menu, which may prove an even easier way to trigger it.

Turn off Touch sounds

We’re not keen on every tap on the Xperia 10 screen creating a sound, and it can be maddening for the people around you, so we recommend turning these sounds off. Go to Settings > Sound > Advanced and toggle Touch sounds off.

Schedule Do Not Disturb

The Do Not Disturb mode is an important weapon in the fight against smartphone interruptions. Don’t let your Sony Xperia 10 wake you up in the middle of the night with pings and chirps from social media or emails you don’t need to know about right now, schedule some proper downtime. Go to Settings > Sound > Do Not Disturb and choose when you want it to turn on and off automatically under the Schedule section. You can also specify exceptions if there’s a particular call you’re concerned about missing.

Schedule Night Light

Too much blue light can throw our sleeping patterns off and make it that bit harder to drift off into slumber. Night Light is baked into Android now and it serves as a way to reduce the blue light your screen emits. We recommend scheduling it to turn on automatically at least a couple of hours before you go to bed. You’ll find the option in Settings > Display > Advanced > Night Light. You can also choose the Intensity in here.

Set your Lock Screen preferences

A lot of people seem to ignore their lock screen settings, but you can actually customize what your lock screen shows and it’s important to consider your privacy if you’re in the habit of leaving your phone unattended. If you take a look in Settings > Lock screen & security > Lock screen preferences you can pick everything from the clock you prefer to what notifications should show up. We recommend setting Show notifications to Hide sensitive content.

Configure the Power key

You can tap the Power key twice to launch the camera app on your Sony Xperia 10 and it’s quite a handy shortcut, but you can change what that double tap does or turn it off if you don’t find it useful. Go to Settings > System > Power key behavior and you can switch to triggering Launch assist app, which is Google Assistant, or set it to None.

Set up Stamina mode

One of the worst things about the Sony Xperia 10 is the battery life. We found that it drains all too quickly, so it’s a good idea to make use of Sony’s battery saver mode, which it calls Stamina mode. You’ll find it in Settings > Battery and you can set it up to automatically start when your battery hits a certain level — by default, it’s 15 percent. It will restrict performance and some phone functions. If you’re really struggling, there’s also an Ultra stamina mode, but it seriously nerfs your phone’s abilities and connectivity, so it’s just for emergencies.

Turn on HDR in the camera

We like the dual-lens camera in the Sony Xperia 10 and 10 Plus, but you will often get much better results if you make sure that HDR is turned on. It will turn on automatically when the camera deems it correct, but if you are snapping a scene with a wide range of brightness we recommend making sure it’s on. Sony has chosen to put the setting in the manual mode, so tap the icon of the three sliders and then tap HDR at the top and make sure it’s on. You probably won’t want to use it in low-light situations or when you or your subject are moving, but in most other situations, it will likely improve the quality of your photos.

Tweak your video settings

If you want to capture good videos, then we recommend delving into the video settings. Tap on the video icon in the camera app to enter video mode and then tap the cog at the top right for settings. Tap on Video size and choose Full HD. Although the Xperia 10 can capture 4K video and Full HD video at 60 frames per second, both those options turn off two important settings that will drastically improve the quality of your videos: Object tracking and SteadyShot. If you want to film something that’s moving then both are vital or you’ll end up with shaky, blurry videos.

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Simon Hill
Former Digital Trends Contributor
Simon Hill is an experienced technology journalist and editor who loves all things tech. He is currently the Associate Mobile…
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