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    Default Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    The Galaxy Nexus is a great phone offering a "Pure Android Experience." That purity brings differences a typical Android owner may not have seen before. Here are dozens of Ice Cream Sandwich Tips and Tricks but first are 20 Workarounds. Market apps give us workarounds for Facebook Sync, LED Blink Rate, Charging LED, microSD, Speed Dial, Smart Dial, Messaging Enter Key, Browser Zoom, FM Radio, Visual Voicemail Photos, etc. Some also "Root" and replace everything with a different "ROM."

    If you have other Galaxy Nexus Workarounds or Ice Cream Sandwich specific Tips and Tricks, please post them here!

    Facebook Sync: Is "...removed...from all future 'googlephones'..." The Galaxy Nexus doesn't sync Facebook profile photos, status, messages, phones, events, birthdays, or notifications. Calls don't pop-up with new profile photos.
    Workaround: Friendcaster (free, $5: no ads) or Haxsync for ICS add many sync features back in.

    Notification LED Slow Blink Rate: It blinks once every 10 seconds. To be sure it is not blinking, look at it for a full 10 seconds.
    Charging Notification LED: The Galaxy Nexus does not have a Notification LED to show when it is charging/charged.
    Workaround: LightFlow Lite let's you customize blink rates, vibrations, sounds, and repeats.

    microSD: microSD cards store movies, photos and music, backup texts, alarms, settings, and Nandroid backups. A microSD slot adds 2% to the volume. microSD cards are under $50 for 32GB.
    Workaround: Use free "Cloud Storage" like Dropbox (extra for free), Google Music, Google Docs, etc.


    Low speaker/headphone volumes: Some feel that the maximum volumes are too low.
    Workaround: Volume+ Sound Boost $2 (dev website) let's you increase the volume or set Equalizer (free) to full.

    Battery Life: The Nexus is a fire-breathing dragon with a big screen, LTE, and six other radios. That takes a lot of power.
    Workaround: Consider an extended battery and see the Battery Life Tips.

    Camera Focus: Some find that the stock ICS camera does not always focus well unless you are very steady.
    Workaround 1: Open the camera app and touch where in the picture to focus.
    Workaround 2: Try an app like Camera ZOOM FX ($3) that some say is an amazing upgrade to the stock camera.

    Camera Contrast: Some have found much better camera contrast and colors than the stock ICS camera.
    Workaround: HDR Camera (free, $4 full) Automatically combines 3 shots at different exposures for amazing color & contrast.

    Messaging: The Nexus messaging is missing the Return Key.
    Workaround: HandCent or ChompSMS add many texting features.

    Visual Voicemail Photos: ICS Visual Voicemail does not show the caller's photo.
    Workaround: The Youmail app will show the caller's photo.

    Speed Dial: The Nexus Lacks Speed Dial to assign contacts to numbers 1 to 9. Long-press 2 for Voice mail, etc.
    Smart Dial: The Nexus lacks Smart Dial. "T9" smart dial uses the keypad to find a name: 2 for B, 7 for R to see names beginning "Br".
    Workaround 1: Get an app like Go Contacts or TouchPal Dialer for Speed Dial, Smart Dial, etc.
    Workaround 2: Create Dialer Shortcuts on a home screen for each number but this is not a Speed Dial or Smart Dial.

    Contact Search: The Nexus lets you search names but not city, street, notes, etc. such as, "Who is on Baker street?"
    Workaround: Go Contacts & TouchPal Dialer search names, city, street, etc.

    Clock: The Galaxy Nexus Clock does not include a Timer, Stopwatch, World Clock, etc.
    Workaround: Consider one of these full-featured Clocks.

    Browser: If you pinch to zoom, the text does not always word-wrap.
    Workaround: Browsers like Dolphin or Opera word-wrap. The manual reflow trick can help too.

    5 Home Screen Lock: ICS does not allow Homescreens to be added or removed.
    Workaround: Get a launcher like LauncherPro, ADWLauncher or Nova Launcher to add or remove home screens.

    Shortcut to a File: Most Androids let you create a homescreen shortcut to a pfd or other file for fast access, but not ICS.
    Workaround: Get a launcher like LauncherPro or ADWLauncher -or- Get an app like ASTRO File Manager.

    Keyboard Text Predictions: The ICS keyboard is good but some have problems with the text predictions or want more features.
    Workaround: Consider SwiftKey, Swype, or other Keyboards.

    Search Window on every Home Screen: The top 1/5 of each screen is now a search bar.
    Workaround 1: LauncherPro, ADWLauncher or Nova Launcher let you use a 1x1 Search icon just on the pages you like.
    Workaround 2: Settings > Manage apps > Google Search > Disable. Download Google Search from the market and use it instead.

    FM Radio: The Nexus lacks an FM Radio.
    Workaround: Consider TuneIn (Pro) for local AM/FM stations or Pandora, Slacker, and iheartradio.

    USB Host: Per the Galaxy Nexus user guide, you could plug in a thumb drive but it does not work.
    Workaround: Root and install third party apps.


    ICS Tips & Tricks
    These tips are specifically for Android 4, Ice Cream Sandwich. 500 general Android tips are in the Getting Started guide.

    Basics
    Home: To see your home screens with your apps and widgets.
    Menu (Technically "Action Overflow"): Tap to see Menu options.
    Settings: The fast way to Settings is to swipe Notifications bar down and taps the settings icon.
    Back: The Back button moves you back.
    Recent Apps: Swipe up or down to view open apps. Swipe left or right to close an app.
    All Apps: Tap to see your all of your apps and widgets.

    Home screens
    Add an App: To add an app to a homescreen - Tap All Apps > Drag the app where you want it..
    Add a Widget: Place a widget On a home screen - Tap All Apps >Widgets > Drag the widget where you want it.
    Folders: Drag and drop one icon on top of another to start a folder.
    Settings Shortcuts: To place a settings shortcut on a home screen, tap My Apps > Widgets > Settings shortcut
    Show more icons: Get a launcher like LauncherPro, ADWLauncher or Nova Launcher.

    Settings
    Turn LTE Off: To save battery, go to Settings > More > Mobile networks > Network Mode> CDMA.
    Animation Speed: To change speed, go to Settings > Developer Options > Window / Transition animation scale.
    Data Management: To set limits, go to Settings > Wireless & networks > Data usage.

    Apps
    Download a New App: Tap All Apps > Market, and find a new app.
    Remove Bloatware: Disable apps you can't remove in Settings > Apps > {app} > Disable.
    Uninstall an App: Fast way is to tap All Apps and drag the app icon to the word Uninstall at the top.

    Sync
    Sync Photos with Picasa: Go to Settings > Accounts & sync > Google > Sync Picasa

    Camera/Video
    Take a Photo While Video Recording: Just tap the screen while recording a video.
    Take a Photo From Lock screen: Drag ring to Camera icon to instantly open camera.
    Take a Screenshot: Press Power and Volume down at the same time.

    Notifications/Unlock
    Unlock Options: Go to Settings. Security > Screen lock to select None, Slide, Face Unlock, Pattern, etc.
    Facial Recognition: You can have multiple reference photos with a beard or makeup and without or for 2 people.
    Clear a Notification: Fast way is to swipe down Notification and swipe left or right on the notification to clear.
    Immediate Response: If you use Slide to Unlock, swipe down on the Notification bar to respond directly.

    Phone
    Text Reply To A Call: When a call comes in drag up and choose which message to use.
    Phone Settings: In the Phone app, tap Action Overflow > Settings.
    Tap Power to End Call: Settings>Accessibility>Power button ends call

    Clock
    Blue Clock: Open the ICS Clock app, long-press anywhere to dim and turn the display blue.
    Set an Alarm: The fast way is to tap your clock widget and you are there!

    Browser
    Browser Quick Controls: Browser Action Overflow > Settings > Labs > Quick Controls. In a website, press on side of screen.
    Tabs: Tabs are browser windows. Tap Settings to open a tab. Swipe up/down to view. Swipe left/right to close.
    Browser History: As in Gingerbread, long-press Back in the ICS browser.
    Save a web page: In the browser, tap Action Overflow > Save for offline reading.

    Other
    Google Wallet: Get Google Wallet on your Galaxy Nexus with no hackery

    Thanks to terpitude71, mclarryjr, Cyber Warrior, and so many others for help in preparing this.

    Resources
    Android 4.0 Platform Highlights
    Nexus S Workarounds
    ICS Highlights
    Android Ice Cream Sandwich: 11 awesome tips and tricks
    Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich Tips and Tricks [VIDEO]
    Complete Guide to the Galaxy Nexus 4G LTE [Verizon]
    Ice Cream Sandwich tips & tricks | The Verge Forums
    Ice Cream Sandwich: Hints, Tips and Tricks
    A User's Guide to Android Ice Cream Sandwich
    Ice Cream Sandwich Google Apps tip: long press any icon for its ...
    Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich: 8 Essential Tips and Tricks
    Tips and tricks for your new Galaxy Nexus
    Last edited by milominderbinder; 02-03-2012 at 07:35 AM.
    Milo
    ← Tap Getting Started at the top of any page for help with:
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    If this helped, please click Thanks & Like↓
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  2. #2  
    Terrigno's Avatar
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    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    You my friend have wrote a hellova write up! Bravo for this!
    Thanked by:
    milominderbinde likes this.
  3. #3  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Forgive me guys, if this is not the right place to put this... but, I've searched everywhere for the answer this morning...

    A couple of questions:

    1) What is the best way to put a PDF file on your home screen or inside a folder for quick access, in case I'm off-line somewhere. I know there are probably many ways, but what is the simplest. Currently, I have a short-cut, linking it as an Evernote attachment.


    2) What is the simplest way to watch an offline movie on the G-Nex. Of course the least expensive method, best (HD) quality, and a wide range of selection the better. I'm thinking I need to download or convert to .3gp files either from DVD or .FLV and such, but what are some legit services are out there.


    thanks... looking forward to spending some quality time with my G-Nex on the plane, hopefully with WiFi, so just in case I don't I have something to do...
  4. #4  
    Cyber Warrior's Avatar
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    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Great writeup Milo.. Amazing as always.
    Thanked by:
  5. Thread Author  Thread Author    #5  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Quote Originally Posted by Droidintorrance View Post
    ...
    1) What is the best way to put a PDF file on your home screen...
    2) What is the simplest way to watch an offline movie on the G-Nex...
    1) I added a Workaround for this. Good question.

    Shortcut to a File: Most Androids let you create a homescreen shortcut to a pfd or other file for fast access, but not ICS.
    Workaround: Get a launcher like LauncherPro or ADWLauncher -or- Get an app like ASTRO File Manager.

    2) I use Handbrake. See the Getting Started, first post for this:

    Converting videos: Convert DVD's and other videos to mp4 or 3gp files that can play on your Android phone
    Milo
    ← Tap Getting Started at the top of any page for help with:
    - Settings - Email - Backup Everything - Phone - Messaging - Music & Photo Sync
    - Keyboards Folders - Favorite Apps - Extending Battery Life - My Avatar
    - iPhone User's Guide to Android - (Palm) - Tablet & Phone Comparison - Epic4GT - ATT - TM
    If this helped, please click Thanks & Like↓
    Thanked by:
    keilasaori likes this.
  6. #6  
    tony bag o donuts's Avatar
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    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    thanks for this but today my phone rebooted and I had to log into fb. I use ha sync but now I am getting fb updates on people widget that didn't occur beforehand even with haxsync.
    Thanked by:
  7. #7  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    microSD: microSD cards store movies, photos and music, backup texts, alarms, settings, and Nandroid backups. A microSD slot adds 2% to the volume. microSD cards are under $50 for 32GB.
    • Workaround: Use free "Cloud Storage" like Dropbox (extra for free), Google Music, Google Docs, etc.
    You can also purchase a USB OTG cable and then any USB flash drive should work for additional storage.
  8. #8  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Great post! Thanks for the great collection of info and links!

    I'd also add ICS Browser+ for advanced quickcontrols similar to Honeycomb
    https://market.android.com/details?i...ft.browserplus
  9. #9  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    This is an excellent workaround list. Great tips, great for an all-inclusive one-stop-shop.

    I have to admit though, it's a little embarrassing that this list has to exist! It means that Google left out lots, shipped ICS with tons of bugs, and removed highly popular functionality. Some of those features I had forgotten were missing, and makes me appreciate my old phones more.
    Thanked by 2:
    f150fan and chrisaking1 like this.
  10. #10  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Thank you for this.
    Thanked by:
  11. #11  
    sjenkins1009's Avatar

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    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Amazing write up. Thanks for all the information. I have been searching for a solution to the volume issue, but never really spoke up about it... or browsed the forums. Thanks again.
    Thanked by:
  12. #12  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    since i don't have my G-Nex yet - can someone tell me what the storage folder structure looks like on the G-Nex? i tried searching for it and couldn't find it. thanks.
  13. #13  
    baldypal's Avatar

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    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Great info! i'll tell you about a tiny trick i figured out. the video app will not let you tap the screen to take a snapshot while using the built in funny faces. so instead i do a screenshot with volume down + power button. now you dont have to record the video to show off the funny faces.
    armada915 likes this.
  14. #14  
    Wicket's Avatar

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    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    great write up!
  15. #15  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Quote Originally Posted by Gekko View Post
    since i don't have my G-Nex yet - can someone tell me what the storage folder structure looks like on the G-Nex? i tried searching for it and couldn't find it. thanks.
    Do you mean on the internal "SD Card" storage? It looks basically the same as my last 2 phones:

    Code:
    shell@android:/sdcard $ ls
    Alarms
    Android
    data
    DCIM
    Documents
    Download
    media
    Movies
    Music
    Notifications
    Pictures
    Podcasts
    Ringtones
    I do like that it now has one "Download" folder instead of having Download and Downloads.
  16. #16  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Firstly,

    This is an amazing list of tips and tricks thanks very much for your time and effort!

    Secondly,

    I wanted to see my home screen wihtout the google search bar at the top( i have a Galaxy Nexus) so i used your tip..

    Workaround 2: Settings > Manage apps > Google Search > Disable. Download Google Search from the market and use it instead.

    and now its gone.. but I want it back! the market says I have it downloaded but its not anywhere in my app drawer or in my app drawer in settings(Downloaded, Running, All)

    how do i get it back??
  17. #17  
    Cyber Warrior's Avatar
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    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Go into your Widgets and add drag it back on the screen.
  18. #18  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Quote Originally Posted by lkspencer View Post
    You can also purchase a USB OTG cable and then any USB flash drive should work for additional storage.
    Doesn't a device have to have the capability for OTG? Does the Nexus have the ability to be a host?
  19. #19  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    any idea how to get the shortcut for the "." in ICS (GNex)? I am coming from android and greatly miss this feature
  20. #20  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Would anyone know how to sync songs with iTunes? I have a lot of playlists in there which is why I want to sync through iTUNES. Thanks
  21. #21  
    Wicket's Avatar

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    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Quote Originally Posted by MattMJB0188 View Post
    Would anyone know how to sync songs with iTunes? I have a lot of playlists in there which is why I want to sync through iTUNES. Thanks
    Double Twist or iSyncr last I knew were the best options.
  22. #22  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Quote Originally Posted by MattMJB0188 View Post
    Would anyone know how to sync songs with iTunes? I have a lot of playlists in there which is why I want to sync through iTUNES. Thanks
    I use "Google Music". You need to login to google music and download the music manager. Install it on the machine where you have your iTunes library and follow the setup instructions. It will ask you if you want to connect it to iTunes somwhere along the install process. After installation is complete, it will begin to "sync" (upload) your itunes music to the "Google music cloud". You can store up to 20,000 songs for free. There are some limitations and the upload process takes a while (took my library 2 days to upload) but its worth it. Be sure and go through the settings in google music on the GNex so you can save some of your music on your device when there is no data connection available. I just created a playlist and downloaded that to my GNex for "Offline Listening". I have an old unlimited data plan so I dont have to worry about going over. Google Music can eat through your data pretty quick.
  23. #23  
    Wicket's Avatar

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    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Quote Originally Posted by armada915 View Post
    I use "Google Music". You need to login to google music and download the music manager. Install it on the machine where you have your iTunes library and follow the setup instructions. It will ask you if you want to connect it to iTunes somwhere along the install process. After installation is complete, it will begin to "sync" (upload) your itunes music to the "Google music cloud". You can store up to 20,000 songs for free. There are some limitations and the upload process takes a while (took my library 2 days to upload) but its worth it. Be sure and go through the settings in google music on the GNex so you can save some of your music on your device when there is no data connection available. I just created a playlist and downloaded that to my GNex for "Offline Listening". I have an old unlimited data plan so I dont have to worry about going over. Google Music can eat through your data pretty quick.
    scratch what I said.. ^ this is the best way to do it! was only thinking about wanting to sync music onto the phone memory only at the time I replied but this is the best option available.
  24. #24  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    Google Music sounds like their version of Apple's iCloud iTunes Synch (or whatever they call it). The Apple deal costs $25/year and they don't upload all the songs, just the tags. Then you can download whatever music you want offline on your iPhone song by song.
  25. #25  

    Default Re: Galaxy Nexus Workarounds, Tips, and Tricks

    how do you get this back
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