Android Basics: 10 Advanced Option Settings for Developers to Enable Right Away [Video]
Built into Android are a number of developer options that allow you to override the normal user-facing functions to gain greater control over your day-to-day experience – here are some tips for getting the most out of your phone.
First of all, Developer Options can sometimes be known as Developer Mode on some Android devices. It’s fairly obvious that these added controls aren’t available out of the box and are designed to allow developers (and through extension users) to configure system behaviors to help with profile, application debugging, and system performance.
Before we start, you will need to go to Settings > System > About phone > Tap on “Build Number” seven times > Enter your PIN or Pattern. To access the broader Developer Options or Developer Mode, you’ll need to head to Settings > System > Developer Options. From here, we can start making adjustments.
Video – 10 developer advanced options settings to enable right away
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default USB configuration
Whenever you connect your Android phone to a PC or laptop, there is a predefined process that will run automatically. This can vary from phone to phone, but thanks to Android developer options, you can adjust this to suit your personal preference.
You can choose between file transfer mode, USB tethering, act as an audio digital interface using MIDI, or transfer images using PTP mode. You can also set it so that your Android phone does not transfer any data and will only charge if supported.
This is a real time saver if you just connect your phone to a PC to remove the files and can be enabled by heading to Settings > System > Developer Options > Default USB Configuration. From here, just set up whichever option you prefer.
Force split screen mode
Android’s default split screen mode is excellent at really allowing you to multitask on your phone. Unfortunately, it doesn’t work with every app for one reason or another. Thanks to a toggle within the Developer Options section of Android 12 and Android 13, you can force split screen mode even for unsupported apps on your Android phone (or tablet).
You may run into some issues with unsupported apps, but this is especially useful since most apps will change depending on your screen size anyway. To enable the header to Settings > System > Developer options > Force activities to resize.
Force a peak refresh rate
Even if your phone has a screen with a high refresh rate, it may not always run at its maximum rate. You may notice frame drops or times the refresh rate drops to lower speeds. This is often limited by the apps on your device, but the Android system will do this to save battery or even improve performance.
However, you may have a 90 or 120 Hz refresh rate monitor or even higher. Thanks to the Developer Options section of Android, you can force the peak refresh rate for your devices to use in every area of the system.
To enable this, head to Settings > System > Developer Options > Force Peak Refresh Rate > toggle ‘On’.
Block all sensor tiles
Your smartphone knows a lot about you. Some might say too much. If you’re concerned about your privacy at certain points, there’s a quick and neat toggle to disable all sensors on the device including GPS, microphone, camera, accelerometer, gyroscope, proximity sensor, and even a magnetometer. You won’t be able to access any app on your phone while toggling This.
There may be some battery benefits here, too. You will lose some functionality if you leave the block in place all the time. However, it is still useful for accessing . To add it to your device’s quick settings panel, head to Settings > System > Developer options > Quick settings developer tiles > Turn off sensors.
This will be added to the first position in the quick settings panel or notification shade but can be moved to wherever you see fit. Mobile data and Wi-Fi are not affected by this box.
Select the fake location app
There are a lot of applications that need your location for jobs. Some may argue too much. There are plenty of apps out there that allow you to fake your current location, which can be useful for games that require a location to unlock or certain in-game features. A good example of this is Pokémon Go or even running apps when you want to access geo-locked content.
You can use location spoofing apps by default for a specific region and with developer options, this means you can place your Android device anywhere on the planet without any issues. To enable head to Settings > System > Developer options > Select Mock Location app > Now select your preferred app.
Acceleration of animations on the device
Android receives a lot of undeserved criticism for the quality and consistency of animations and perceived smoothness. In recent years, things have improved dramatically. Thanks to the enhanced developer options mode, you can tweak your phone’s animations though it’s too slow or not slow enough to your liking.
If you want to tweak the animation speed, go to Settings > System > Developer options. From here there are three options you can switch between to improve speed. The Window Animator Scale, Transition Animator Scale, and Animator Duration Scale can all be adjusted to suit your personal preference. It should be noted that 0.5x speed means more speed, so smaller numbers mean faster animations.
Wi-Fi check throttling
Battery life is one of the biggest complaints of any smartphone, and taking steps to increase it is always helpful — so long posts don’t get in the way. One such function that might be useful to disable is Scan Wi-Fi Networks. However, you can still keep this enabled for Wi-Fi hotswap but limit the number of times the scanning process takes place.
Wi-Fi Scan limits background apps from scanning for Wi-Fi to once every 30 minutes. Without activating it, it can be up to once every 15 seconds. In our opinion, this is a good compromise if you don’t want to completely disable Wi-Fi scanning.
To enable header to Settings > System > Developer options > Wi-Fi scan throttling.
Force dark mode
The custom dark theme or dark mode is one of the best additions for Android in recent years. It’s still not perfect, but thanks to a toggle under Developer options, you can force a dark theme even for unsupported Android apps and certain system partitions.
As you would expect, this can be buggy. Certain parts of the user interface can become obscured or difficult to decipher as a result of using this option. We say use this function with caution as it can make some apps difficult to use properly.
If you want to enable the dark theme everywhere, go to Settings > System > Developer options > Force dark override.
Always enable/disable mobile data
Even when your phone is constantly connected to Wi-Fi, mobile data will be active to quickly switch between networks. This is great if you switch between networks on a regular basis, but for most people, it can affect the longevity of the battery.
To disable or enable this function, head to Settings > System > Developer options > Mobile data is always on > toggle it on/off. With this functionality disabled, it’s worth noting that when Wi-Fi is turned off or disconnected, it will take a few seconds before mobile data is available, but we think this is a worthwhile compromise.
Monitor and manage running services
Under Developer options, you can manage and monitor any running processes running on your Android phone including cached apps. If your phone is acting weird or you just want to get an idea of what’s hogging the device’s memory, this dashboard is a useful place to visit to get a better idea of what’s going on.
You can also stop any processes or apps from this pane if you wish. Head to Settings > System > Developer options > Turn on services to get an idea of the current status of your Android phone.
We just want to know what developer options you simply have to enable right away on your Android phone. Is there something you literally can’t live without? Let us know in the comments section below.
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