Much like there’s not enough money in the world to ever make me switch from a Windows PC to a Mac, when it comes to the Android/iOS debate, when it comes to overall experience I’m Team Android all the way. Having said that, there are definitely a few things I prefer about my iPhone. One of those things is a setting (iOS 10 or later) that lets me wake up the screen simply by raising the phone and looking at it (only works in portrait orientation). This is super handy for quickly checking notifications on the lock screen or other situations where you’re trying to discreetly interact with your phone.
In 2016, Google introduced this feature on its Nexus and Pixel phones, but other Android devices do not include it as part of the core operating system at the moment. So here are the different ways you CAN wake up your phone.
Press the power button.
This is the original method and should work on any Android phone. Of course, the reason that other methods have come along is because this is not always convenient. Sometimes you can’t easily access the power button depending on where it is on the phone, or it’s close to the volume buttons makint it hard to distinguish, and it can require a fair amount of pressure to actually activate it.
Press the home button.
This is a little easier than using the power button because it’s always in the same place on any phone, there are no other buttons near it, and it requires less force to press it. But it can still be difficult to access.
Double tap the screen.
This feature is self-explanatory: simply double-tap anywhere on the screen to wake it up. This gives you a lot of area to use to wake up your phone, although it can still be inaccessible if your phone is face down or in your pocket. But the bigger issue is that this feature is not available on a lot of models, including the Samsung Galaxy S line.
Wave your hand over the proximity sensor.
This is a setting under Accessibility > Dexterity and Interaction and will have different names depending on operating system version and phone model. I have one phone where it’s called Air Wake Up and another where it’s called Easy Screen Turn On. Once it’s enabled, you simply wave your hand over the proximity sensor, which is usually located near the LED charging light. You can click on the setting name to see exactly what gesture you need to use, and your phone may need to be lying on a flat surface for it to work. I’ve tried it on both my phones and find it a bit hit or miss, but it may be more consistent if I used it more.
Use a third-party app.
There are various apps in the Google Play Store that can help. Here are a few examples but don’t consider them recommendations, since I haven’t actually tested them out. Before using them, make sure you read the full notes in the description and check out user reviews.
- Double Tap Screen On and Off
- smartWake – Auto Screen On/Off (includes Raise to Wake functionality)
Do you know of other methods for waking up your Android phone screen you’d like to share? Add a comment below!
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