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10 smart technical tricks that you wish you knew before

Developers add all sorts of secrets, shortcuts and hidden tricks to the gadgets you use every day. Here’s one I bet you did not know until now.

Grab any USB cable that is around your house. That symbol on the one hand is not just brand building or decoration. It will point up if you connect horizontally; if you connect a cable vertically, the USB symbol will face you. Nice.

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1. Teach your iPhone a new trick

Thanks to iOS 14, you can now ask your phone to execute a series of new commands using the help of the backward tap movement.

When this feature is turned on, the phone interprets knocking on the back at the touch of a button. But unlike the old home button, tailgates can do much more than lock the screen. You can customize the movement to open the Wallet app, mute the volume, take a picture and much more.

Rear cranes are only available on iPhone 8 models and newer with iOS 14 installed. To configure it:

  1. Open on iPhone Settings, followed by availability.
  2. Press Touch.
  3. Scroll to the bottom and select Back Press.
  4. Press Double click or Triple press to select an action. You can have up to two gestures assigned at the same time.

Pressing twice on the back of your phone activates the double-tap movement you assigned. Press it three times to activate the Triple Tap motion. You can change the specified movements at any time by following the same steps.

You can also identify a song with one touch on the iPhone. How to do it on my site.

2. Look much better during Zoom conversations

Daily zoom meetings can be a drag. At the very least, you can look your best by turning on Touch Up My Appearance.

It’s free to use, so you do not need to upgrade to a paid Zoom account. To configure it:

  1. Open Zoom on the desktop and click profile picture. Then click Settings.
  2. click on Video category.
  3. Under Video settings, click Touch my appearance.
  4. Use the slider to adjust the effect. Zoom will remember your preferences the next time you log in.

You can also turn on Touch Up my Appearance in the Zoom iOS app:

  1. Tap on the Zoom app Settings.
  2. Press Meetings.
  3. Press Touch my appearance.
  4. Toggle this option to view your video with and without touch.

If you do not use Zoom for your video calls, you can still use this trick. Snap Camera from the makers of Snapchat that lets you apply filters to Zoom, Skype and Google Meet conversations. Click or click here for instructions and a direct download link.

Get better sound during video calls

Nobody likes crunchy sound or background noise in video calls. It’s embarrassing and distracting. The Krisp app uses machine learning algorithms to detect excess noise and remove it.

To configure it:

  1. Tap or click here to create an account and download the Krisp app. Follow the installation instructions.
  2. Open Zoom and click Settings.
  3. To open Audio settings. In the drop-down box, select Krisp for your microphone and Krisp for your speaker.
  4. In the Krisp app, select the microphone you want to use and the speakers you want to use.

Krisp is compatible with Skype, Google Meet and Microsoft Teams. Look for the preferences or the settings menu in the video service, and select the microphone input and speaker output. If you need more help, Krisp has support for Mac and Windows users here.

4. Know how apps spy on you

When Apple released iOS 14, it included a new feature that alerts users when the camera or microphone is in use. These indicator icons are a big privacy boost.

Android 11 does not have the same feature built-in, but you can get the same alerts with the free Access Dots app for Android. After installing the app, you will see a green icon if the camera is on or an orange icon when your microphone is in use.

When you install Access Dots, it will ask you for full control over your phone. This is safe to approve since the app needs permission to check if other apps are using the microphone or camera.

Tap or click here to download Access Dots and for steps to take when an app looks at every single move.

5. A quick way to mute your music

If you play music or sound in another tab, you do not have to stop what you are doing to mute it. Instead, you can mute the tab with just one click.

In Google Chrome, right-click on an audio playback tab and select Mute the site. This step will stop sound from playing in the tab until you turn on the sound.

In Microsoft Edge, it’s even easier. Just click speaker icon. The same step applies to Safari.

6. A better way to copy and paste that gets rid of the trash

Have you ever copied text and watched the format get corrupted when you tried to paste it? No one wants Frankenstein documents to be copied from different sources, which is why a clean paste is the best way to keep all the text consistent.

To do this, just press Ctrl + Shift + V. on PC or Option + CMD + Shift + V. on Mac. This will paste the text you copied and remove the formatting it had. If you paste the text into a document, it will now match everything else.

7. Get fast writing with easy text replacement shortcuts

Here’s a powerful trick that can save you a lot of time and annoyance: text replacement. This trick allows you to set up shortcuts to replace longer sentences, such as “GM” for “Good morning!” You can do this with regular sentences or customize them.

Just think of the possibilities. The @ symbol becomes your email address, and something like “myhome” can be the shortcut to your address.

On an iPhone:

  • Go to Settings > General > Keyboard > Replacement of text
  • Press plus icon, then enter the phrase and shortcut. Press Save.

For Android, you can do this using the Google keyboard:

  • Open Gboard Settings > Dictionary > Personal dictionary and select language.
  • Press to add plus characters. In the first field, enter the word or phrase you want Gboard to remember. In the second field, enter the card code you want to pull it up.

8. The secret scroll you wish you knew about

Not all of us have a fancy mouse with a scroll wheel. There’s an easy way to scroll built-in right on your keyboard: Just press the space bar with the browser open and you move down the page.

Press to scroll back Shift + space.

You can use this trick in any browser on both Windows 10 and macOS. If that does not seem to work, click on the web page background you are on and try again.

9. Manage incoming alerts only on iOS and Android

Managing alerts for every app on your phone can be a royal pain in the neck. But the latest versions of iOS and Android allow you to change these settings on the go. The next time a notification comes in that you want to unsubscribe from, you can adjust the settings there in the window.

On iOS, tap and hold the notification when it appears on your phone. The window should expand slightly. Then tap the three-point icon to change the settings for that app.

Tap and hold the notification on Android, then tap Settings. You can choose to turn off alerts by tapping Alerts off or tapping Advanced to allow more inbound alerts such as alert dots.

Use dark mode to save your eyes

Android 11 included a new dark theme that is easier on your eyes when viewed in low light. You can even schedule when the dark theme is turned on, in case you do not want it all the time. To configure it:

  1. Swipe down from the top of the screen to see Quick settings Menu.
  2. Long press Dark theme icon. It looks like a crescent moon.
  3. You will see the three planning options: “No, ”“Turns from sunset to sunrise“And”Turns on at the appropriate time. ”
  4. If you select “Turn on at custom time”, select and select the times you want Dark Theme to start and end.

Now that you know these handy technical tips, you can get more out of your devices without spending extra money. You can not beat it.

Are you using an iPhone? Tap or click here for the steps to use dark mode along with new animated wallpapers, ways to clean up the home screen and more.

DO YOU NEED A HAND WITH A SLOW PC, WRITE OR SOFTWARE PROBLEM YOU CANNOT CRACK? Post technical questions for specific answers from me and other technical professionals. Visit my Q&A forum and get technical help now.

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