Were you one of the chosen ones who received an invite for this phone? It certainly can hold its own against many phones that cost twice as much. Now the invite is open to everyone. Plus, you are about to receive another technological blessing in the form of this article.
We have some tips and tricks up our sleeves, as well as a few hacks. The developers of this phone let us in on their creative side. They also held back from forcing apps and UI features down our throats, and instead left more customization up to the user. OnePlus 2 taught us to never settle, so we won’t.
1. Gestures, Plus Even More Control Over Music
You are going to miss this photo opportunity if you can’t get your camera to operate right now. Your toddler isn’t going to wait on you to first unlock the screen, enter the pin, open the camera app…man, it’s already too late. The neat thing about the Gestures feature is that they work even when the phone screen is off. Let’s replay that scene with your adorable toddler who is on-the-go.
Yes, your screen is off and you are working under time constraints, but all you need to do is trace the letter O on your phone with your finger and now you have access to the camera. There are actually four of these apps that can be quickly launched via gesture. Drawing a V will summon your OnePlus 2’s flashlight. Another useful option is the ability to wake the phone from its slumber and perform the action of your choice by merely tapping the screen twice in quick succession.
Music control can be performed by tracing II with two fingers. That action can cause the music to either pause or play. Additionally, you can use the <> symbols for track control. To enable any or all of these gestures, go first to Settings, then Buttons.
If notifications are pausing your music, consider downloading an app like Tasker. You can enable a Do Not Disturb feature and link it to audio. You will have to enable Tasker from your phone’s Accessibility settings, and then create a new profile within Tasker itself. You will then be prompted to associate the profile with any of the apps you use to listen to music.
2. Shelf Vs Google Now
You might have already enabled Shelf during startup, but maybe not. If not, it’s not too late. You can still enable Shelf by long-pressing an empty space within the Home screen and choosing Settings in the lower left-hand corner. Now switch the Shelf toggle to an ON position.
Why would you want to? Shelf does create a special place where you can feature the picture of your choice. Here you will also find your most frequently used apps and contacts. But Shelf isn’t everyone’s cup of tea. It’s in Beta and OnePlus 2 is happy to hear your suggestions. You can disable it much the same way you enabled it—-only switch the toggle to an OFF position.
If you would just as soon stick with Google Now, here’s some advice. To find apps faster, long-press the App Drawer button from your Home screen. This opens a search feature, which is nice if you have lots of apps. To also save time, you can establish relationships so that you can simply instruct Google Now to “Text my dad,” and it will know who you are talking about (maybe not personally, but it will retrieve his name).
You can simply let Google Now know that “Tom is my dad” and Google Now will make the association using your address book. If there are multiple Toms, Google will ask you to specify and confirm. Or, you can make Google ask. You can command Google Now, “Call my dad,” and it will then ask you for clarification.
3. Button Swap
Although the design of the phone has certainly improved, it still isn’t what we’d consider thin. This makes reaching the Back button a little bit awkward at times. Luckily, there’s a built-in option to switch the buttons. Go to Settings>Buttons>Swap Buttons. This can make things much easier for you, especially if you are left-handed.
If you are using a custom ROM, such as Exodus ROM, you will might find that you no longer have that option. Senior XDA member ImHavenHart still found a way around this by visiting Menu>Hardware>Action Rebinding>Back>Single Press Action and selecting Recent Apps. Next, choose App Switch>Single Press Action and change this to Navigate Back.
4. Dark Mode
Dark Mode takes all of the white portions of the user interface and makes them dark. This in turn adds more contrast between black and the other colors, making them pop. To enable Dark Mode, navigate to Settings>Customization>Dark Mode. To add an accent color, select that option from the customization menu you were just in.
5. Get a Better Camera App
Several camera problems have been identified, several of which are due to bugs in the app software. Some users report that the camera app screen will go blank and no photos can be taken. For many users who are able to succeed in taking a photo, the screen locks immediately after. Hopefully an update will address this soon, but why not simply bypass the issue with a better app in the meantime?
F-5 offers a ton of features for those who like experiment and perfect their camera settings. This includes ISO, focus mode, speed-priority mode, exposure compensation, timelapse support, and much more. Some OnePlus 2 users have had issues with it though. Another simpler app that seems to work well is Camera Next, with its array of over 50 filter effects.
6. Icon Packs
If you were looking for a more extensive approach to changing the user interface, icon packs could just what you need. The result is akin to applying a theme, like you might on a Samsung phone. There are multitudes of icon packs on Google Play, but we’ll include a couple below. CandyCons packs over 950 icons, while Polycon specializes in the fresh and sleek look.
After you make your choice and download the pack(s), you can apply by long-pressing an open area of your Home screen until a popup appears. Go to Settings>Icon Pack. There you will find your download(s).
CandyCons – Icon Pack
Polycon – Icon Pack
7. Customize LED Notifications
You have the ability to color-code some of your notifications if you’d like. For instance, if you want green to indicate that your battery is now completely charged, or red to tell you it’s low, you can make it happen. Unfortunately, you can’t set it up to differentiate between other types of notifications. Aside from the battery statuses, there’s only the Global Notification, with its default notification LED color, which you can choose.
Nonetheless, notification LED customization of any sort is not a feature all phones offer, but your OnePlus 2 does. Take advantage of this by visiting Settings>Customization>LED Notifications. There you can choose from 6 different color for 4 instances.
8. Enable Accelerated Location
This is something you have probably taken for granted on every other smartphone you’ve had. Why? Because it was automatically enabled for you. But on the OnePlus 2 it is not.
It’s easy enough to enable though. From Settings, go to Location and toggle on Accelerated Location. You can probably guess what happens if you don’t. Your GPS will be slower.
9. Manage Space
The OnePlus will allow you to change the size of the App Drawer grid to fit fewer or greater apps in the menu. You can configure the grid to be 6×5 or 4×3.Long-press on a blank area of your Home Screen, tap App Drawer Grid Size, and when you see the one you want, tap to apply. Using this trick will allow you to have as many as 30 apps on the screen.
There is also a way to lower the DPI (Dots Per Inch), causing your UI to seem more roomy. It will only work if you have rooted the OnePlus 2, however. If that just so happens to be the case, attain a file manager with root access, like Root File Manager. Launch the manager, and go to /system. Open build.prop and type ro.sf.lcd_density=400 , use the numerical setting of your choice.
10. Add Custom ROM Features (Requires Root with Custom Recovery)
This trick is for advanced users who have rooted or are willing to root their phone. If we just described you, we think you will love what you can do on this phone using Xposed, Xposed Gel Settings, and GravityBox. Want your battery displayed as a percentage? Using GravityBox, go to Statusbar Tweaks>Battery Settings>Battery Indicator Style>Stock Battery with a Percentage.
You will also gain Pie Controls, Lockscreen Tweaks, more Power menu features, and Navigation Bar Tweaks. Want to monitor data traffic? Go to Statusbar Tweaks>Data Traffic Monitor. Additionally, there are Display and Phone Tweaks, plus so much more.
Xposed GEL Settings [ROOT]
Which tip, trick, or hack worked the best for you? Did you experience any issues during or after? Send us your thoughts on all of these topics. We hope you find these tips and tricks for the OnePlus 2 to be useful, and be sure to share your own advice with your fellow OnePlus 2 users.