Category: Tips

Best Android Apps to Monitor App Usage and Fight Smartphone Addiction

Smartphone addiction is one of the biggest problem facing this generation. The invention of the smartphone was indeed a Nobel technology which was mainly focused on productivity. But with ever-growing social media apps and addictive games, it is now becoming a problem for many. So what is smartphone addiction? There are many definitions to this same statement. But in a nutshell, a smartphone addiction is when someone spends more time on their phone than interacting with real people or someone who can’t stop himself/herself from checking the phone repeatedly.

Smartphone addiction has many consequences for your health and psychology. Back problems, nerve damage, stress, anxiety, depression, lack of sleep, eyesight problem, and many others are its direct and indirect effects.

In this internet age, we can not just go dark on our smartphone usages; we need to have a smartphone for different purposes. But the thing we can do is just avoid unnecessary scrolling on Facebook feed or Instagram feed. Many people understand that this is a serious issue and we need to fix this as early as possible.

Smartphone addiction

Some developers are working tirelessly to develop apps that encourage you to use smartphone less and less. Here are a few amazing apps for Android users which one can use to monitor their smartphone usage and fight smartphone addiction.

Best Android apps to Monitor Smartphone usage and fight Smartphone Addiction

1. Stay Focused

Stay Focused is my personal favorite app that I use to monitor how much time I am spending on each app and how many time I am opening an app in a day. This little tool lets you create your own profile where you can allow how much time you want to spend on each app and it will block the app for the day once your past that time. You can also set how many time you want to open an app in a day.

You can set different time limits for different apps and Stay Focused will make sure you spend only the allowed time on that app. Stay Focused also analyze all the apps on your phone and how much time you are spending on each app. This way you can look back to see how much time you are wasting on apps that you can live without. Stay Focused is a free Android apps available on Google Play Store.

2. App Blocker

In the core, this app functions exactly like the Stay Focused app. After installing the app, you will be asked to set how much time you want to give each app. You can also choose the days of the week when you want to be more productive the app will block all distraction for you. You can create your own profile with apps you spend the most time on and restrict those apps for only a few minutes each day.

If you want to be more productive, you can use its functionality to block app notification thus reducing the time you spend on each app. You can also see the timeline of apps that you use daily and how much time you spend on any specific apps. You can also access some specific data like which time of the day you spend the most time on social media and many more. This app is available on Google Play Store for free.

3. Less Phone

This app is also a popular and one of my favorite apps. This, not an app blocking app or app usage data app unlike the two above in this list. This app is a launcher which encourages you to use your phone as less as possible. This launcher removes app drawer and replaces it with a simple black home screen with only essential functions. You have phone and task app along with an option to add two more apps to the home screen. That’s it. There is no option for you to open any app let alone spending hours on those apps.

So, you can pick only those apps that you need the most, and you will live your life happily. Unfortunately, this app is not available for free. It is a paid app, and you can buy this for $1. If you are taking smartphone addiction seriously, then you should consider investing a dollar towards this app.

These are the three apps that if used correctly and long enough you will see an improvement in your daily life. All these apps discourage you to use your phone less and spend those time on things that matter to you like your real friends and your dream.

I hope this article has helped you in any way to use your phone as less as possible and curing of this smartphone addiction.

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All Google Apps with Dark Mode and How to Enable

Enable dark mode on all Google apps

Dark mode looks great on phones, especially on LED displays. For a long time, developers have ignored the fact that people love dark mode apps, but now slowly but steadily it is catching up. Now we see a new wave of apps with dark mode theme. Many of our favorite apps like Twitter is available with the dark mode in the setting. For Android users, we have been using a lot of Google apps from YouTube to Gmail and Maps, and Google has known for slapping white themes on each of its apps. Not anymore. Google is also slowly shifting dark modes and now many of Google apps and services available with an optional dark mode which can be enabled from the settings. Today in this article, we will list all the dark mode Google apps with the process to enable.

Google Apps with Dark Mode and How to Enable

1. YouTube

YouTube dark mode

YouTube is the biggest app from Google which many people use. In the last few months, Google has been spotted testing its dark mode themed YouTube and now it is available for everyone. Here is how you can enable dark mode on your YouTube app.

  • Update your YouTube app.
  • Go to setting, then General. You will see a new dark theme option. Enable it to enable dark theme on your YouTube app.

2. Messages

Android Message dark mode

Google’s own messaging app is been going through a lot of changes in the recent time. If you are using message app from Android, you can experience a few interesting features including a new material theme, messages for the web to send and receive messages from your computer and of course dark theme. The dark theme on Android message looks dope.

  • To enable dark mode, download the latest app from the Play Store.
  • Tap on the 3 vertical dots from the top right corner and select ‘Enable dark mode.’

3. Google News

Google News Dark Mode

I don’t personally use Google News on my phone. But if you do, then you will be glad to know that this app also comes with an option to enable dark mode.

  • Update the app and then go to setting.
  • Here you can see the “Dark theme” option. Tapping on it will show different options for enabling or disabling the dark mode. You can select “always” to enable dark mode for both day and night. Or you can choose to enable dark mode only in the night or only during battery saving mode.

4. SnapSeed

SnapSeed dark mode

SnapSeed is Google’s answer for Lightroom from Adobe. You can do professional touch up to your photos from your Android and iPhone. The SnapSeed app is now coming with the option to enable dark mode.

  • Update the app and go to setting from the menu.
  • Enable “Dark theme,” and you are done.

5. Google Authenticator App

Google Authenticator app dark mode

Google Authenticator is an interesting app which replaces two-step security code SMS with an in-app code generator. Many people don’t use this app, but if you do, you can enable dark mode for this app too.

  • Tap on three vertical dots from the top right corner and select “View in night mode.”

6. Gmail on Browser

Unfortunately, Gmail app hasn’t gotten any dark mode update yet. But if you use Gmail on a computer, you can enable dark theme there for your browser. To enable dark themed Gmail on computer follow the below steps.

  • Open Gmail from your PC or Mac browser.
  • Click on the settings icon and select “Themes.”
  • From there scroll down and select “Dark.” You will have a dark themed Gmail for your computer.

7. YouTube on Browser

Just like Gmail, YouTube is also offering a dark mode for computer users. You can enable by following the below steps.

  • Open YouTube.com and make sure to log in with your Google account.
  • Now click on your profile picture and select “Dark Theme.” Slide the dark theme switch to enable the dark theme.

So these are the apps and services from Google which comes with the dark mode. Google, as well as other app developers, are still afraid of enabling dark mode by default. But it is good to see them adding it. So, what other would you like to see come in dark mode? Let us know in the comments.

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Best Netflix Tips and Tricks that Many People Don’t Know About

Netflix, the biggest movie and TV series streaming platform, is one of the best things happened to this internet generation. I can not imagine my life before Netflix; it just makes being-watching so much fun and easier. Netflix allows thousands of movies and TV series from different languages and countries to be watched with just a few clicks and taps. Netflix is available in more than 190 countries in 17 different languages. That is a lot to choose from. Netflix is so huge that a recent study by a networking equipment company Sandvine claims that Netflix accounts of 15% of all internet bandwidth worldwide. That is a lot of bandwidth for a single streaming service. That shows Netflix is doing some good work but as they there is still room for improvements for the best also. In today’s article, we will show you some best tips and tricks for Netflix that you would wish you knew earlier.

Best Netflix Tips and Tricks

Best Tips and Tricks for Netflix

These are some of the best tips and tricks you can find online to improve your Netflix experience. So, without further ado, let’s check out these top tips and tricks for Netflix.

1. Add Rotten Tomato Ratings and IMDB Links

add imdb links to Netflix

Having a rating and expert opinion on any movie or Tv series make browsing Netflix som much easier. You can decide if something is worth your time or not within minutes instead of shuffling through the internet for review. By default, Netflix doesn’t support any of those features. So, to make Netflix better, we have a solution. There is a free tool called Netflix Enhancement Suite for Google Chrome browser. This tool is a Chrome extension that adds extra details like movie/Series rating from rotten tomato, IMDB link, trailer and reviews of the movie you are browsing.

This tool is free and only works with Google Chrome browser.

2. Ask Netflix to add your Favorite Movie or Series

Netflix is huge, but it still lacks some great movie and Tv series. Sometimes we hear about a movie or series and wants to watch it very badly only to find out that the show or movie doesn’t exist on Netflix. Why don’t we ask the source directly? You can do that accessing Netflix request section. You can request any movies or Tv series up to 3 at a time. This doesn’t guarantee that the Netflix will add that, but at least you tried.

3. Play Netflix Roulette

Sometimes we just want to watch a random movie or TV series without going through hundreds and thousands of movies and Tv series in every genre. At that moment we just wish that Netflix had a random button to find a good movie or Tv series without spending much time. Consider yourself lucky; you can do just that with the help of Netflix Roulette from reelgood.com. Here you can select streaming platforms, in our case, Netflix and select a genre and it will suggest a good movie or TV series instantly. This website supports more than 50 streaming and TV network.

4. Watch Content from Other Countries

Content licensing is a tricky thing, many publishers including streaming services like Netflix have to buy content licenses for every country. That is the reason why you see some movies or TV series available in one county while they are completely unavailable in another country. Netflix also works the same way, many movies and TV series might not be available on your country, but if you open same Netflix account from some other country, then you might see that movie or TV series there. To get the most out of your Netflix, get a good VPN or unblocker and change your location to some other country and that way you can access movies and TV series from their country.

Due to a recent crackdown, many free VPN’s are not working well with Netflix, for a better experience choose paid VPN services like Express VPN and NordVPN.

5. Save Money with Netflix

This trick is especially helpful for college going students. So as all of you know, the base price of Netflix is not that cheap and if you are a college student, then that $8 a month is also a lot. What if I say, you can save money from your Netflix subscription? The most expensive plan for Netflix is $14 per month which also comes with UHD quality and 4 simultaneous screens. Find 3 more friends who are willing to save money and get a $14 per month plan. Now you all can use a single account with 4 different profile and split the cost. This way your monthly subscription is getting down to $3.5 per month and comes with UHD quality streaming.

These 5 were the best tips and tricks for Netflix. If you follow and implement these five tips and tricks with your Netflix streaming, then you will have a better Netflix experience. Please let us know how you think about these Netflix tricks.

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5 Tips to Make Your Smartphone Battery Last Longer

Smartphone technology has grown from nothing to crazy in the past few years. We have impressive triple camera setups, in-display fingerprint, we have phones getting bigger and bezzles are shrinking with every new smartphone, we have SOCs that can compete with top tire computers. But do you know what hasn’t changed in the last few years? Our battery technology. There is no significant changes in the way batteries have to be manufactured. No matter how expensive or how cheap phone you are using, your battery will start losing its power after a few months of usage. No one wants their battery drained in the middle of the day, and no one likes to charge their phone in every few hours.

Even though we can not change how our batteries are being made, but we can try and keep our battery losing its value by changing how we use our smartphones. Here are 5 basic but important tips that can help you keep your battery losing before the sun goes down.

5-tips-to-make-smartphone-battery-last-longer

1. Find Out Which App Using Your Battery the Most

On an average, every smartphone users install 30-40 apps on their phone. But the report suggests that they hardly use 7-8 apps regularly. With huge internal storage, many people would think that having that many unused apps on their phone won’t matter. But it does, it does to the battery. Almost all the app now try to connect to the internet all the time so that they can show you relevant notifications. These apps cost a lot to your batteries life.

So, you need to find out which apps are using more battery and you don’t use those apps or user rarely, then it is best for you to install those applications.

2. Turn Off Wireless Services When not in Use

Disable Wifi to make battery last longer

Connectivity is a field where our smartphones got us all cover. We have now GPS, Wi-Fi, LTE, Bluetooth, NFC. They are a blessing for this new generation of smartphone users. It is good to have some many connectivity options but to be honest; we don’t need all of these all the times. These services are also very power hungry as they have to send and receive data constantly. So it is a good practice to turn them off when not in use.

You can do that by swiping from the top in the case of Android and from the bottom for iPhone. This is simple but believe me; your battery will thank you.

3. Change Unnecessary Settings

There are many settings that we just use without thinking twice, but they can affect your battery badly. Here are a few settings that you need to change:

  • Brightness: Use auto brightness, that way your phone will adjust brightness accordingly. That way you will use full brightness only when needed. And brightness does affect battery performance.
  • Haptic Feedback: You don’t need your phone to vibrate everytime you type a letter, you also don’t need your phone to vibrate when you tap something on the screen. These are called haptic feedback. Many phones have different levels for haptic feedback. Your phone usages won’t be affected if you turn these off, but your battery will improve for sure.

4. Minimize Animations

Animations are cool! That being said, it also sucks up a lot of battery juice. We can surely live without animations. I am not saying to turn off animations altogether. It will give you bad user experiences. But you can reduce it by few points, that way your user experience won’t change while you do some good for your battery.

On Android, go to the accessibility setting then animation, there you can see many animation categories. Reduce animation for every animation category. For iPhone, this setting is labeled as Reduce Motion under accessibility settings.

5. Update apps and OS

Update apps and OS

Every major app developer and OS developers now understand how important battery optimization is. That is why many developers are now making their apps battery friendly ad implementing many features. So, it is wise to keep your apps updated to enjoy the latest battery optimizations that are being offered by your favorite apps.

These are the 5 essential tips one can add to his/her smartphone usages habit and can see great differences in battery performances. There are other methods too like killing background apps, disabling vibration and ringtone all together and many. While those do work but they are what makes your phone a smartphone. And in my opinion, curbing them for a better battery is not worth the trade-off.

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How to Use Two WhatsApp Account on Mac and Windows

WhatsApp is a popular instant messaging app which is now owned by Facebook. WhatsApp has gone through lots of changes after Facebook’s acquire. One of the most popular features of new WhatsApp is that now people can access WhatsApp from their Windows or Mac computer. By using this feature, you can send and receive messages, check status, do basic WhatsApp configuration. This features works by syncing your WhatsApp app on the phone with the desktop on real-time, and this works smoothly. Even though it is a great feature but for many, this features lacks something: dual WhatsApp capabilities. Many people use two SIMs especially in developing countries like India and China. And for those people, able to access two different WhatsApp accounts from the same computer is a nightmare. But not anymore.

In this article, we will talk about a simple solution to access two different WhatsApp accounts from the computer and on the same browser. This feature is going to help many people who use two accounts for two different purposes. So, without further ado, lets just straight into this article.

access-two-whatsapp-on-same-computer

Access Two Different WhatsApp Account from Same Windows and Mac Computers

For this to work, we are going to be using WhatsApp web feature. Many people believe that the WhatsApp web only works with one WhatsApp account at a time. And to many extents that are true. But with a little trick, we can trick WhatsApp and make a path for us to access two different WhatsApp accounts from the same computer and browser.

WhatsApp web works with almost all modern browsers for Mac and Windows. But for better connectivity and performances, we recommend the Google Chrome browser. If you have Chrome browser, then you are good to go. If not, take a minute and install it before proceeding.

Step 1: Open http://web.whatsapp.com on your Google Chrome browser.

Step2: Open WhatsApp on your smartphone and then follow below:

  • On Android and Windows phone: Go to menu> WhatsApp Web
  • On iPhone: Settings> WhatsApp Web.
  • On BlackBerrey: Go to Chat> Menu> WhatsApp Web.

WhasApp web

Step 3: Scan the QR code on your computer screen from WhatsApp web on your phone.

Now you have synced one WhatsApp account with your Windows or Mac browser.

Step 4: Open another tab on your Google Chrome browser (or whatever browser you are using) and open http://dyn.web.whatsapp.com

Step 5: Open your second WhatsApp account on your phone and go to WhatsApp web. See step 2 for reference.

Step 6: Scan the QR code, and you have linked your second WhatsApp account as well.

Congratulation. You are now successfully added two different WhatsApp accounts on your Windows or Mac computer.

Remember, for this method to work you need to have two different WhatsApp accounts connected to the internet.

So, this is how you can use two different WhatsApp accounts on your Windows or Mac on the same browser. You don’t have to fidget around two different browsers for different accounts. I hope I made this post as easy as possible. If you find any difficulties, drop a comment, and I will help you right away.

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How to Find and Saved Passwords on Mac

Mac, the 2nd most popular computer OS after windows have a lot of features under its sleeve. Many people use Mac because they feel mac is more sophisticated with features and performance than windows and that is true for many instances. I use both Mac and Windows for different purposes, and I must tell you that Mac has its advantages and millions of others who use Mac I agree with them.

Mac has very subtle and nifty features that might not sound super important, but in our day to day, it helps to make the computing process easier. One of them is the Keychain. Keychain helps you to save passwords for many websites in an encrypted form and autofill it when necessary. Keychain passwords are also synced with other Apple devices logged with the same Apple ID which ensures that you carry your password everytime you need.

There is no denying that Keychain is a great feature and saves you from remembering hundreds of complex password. But sometimes we do need to know the password and saving a complex password is not that easy. There could be many reasons as to why you need a password, but we can help, you find your saved password from your Mac machine.

Find saved password on Mac

How to Find Save Password on Mac

1. Open Keychain Access. You can find it in others folder by going to launch pad, or you can do a spotlight search.

2. Click on the Password under the category on the left.

3. Search for the thing you want to see the password and double click on it.

Show Password

4. Click on the box beside ‘Show Password.‘ Mac will ask for your login password. So enter the password that you use to login to your mac.

5. Now you can see the password.

How to Find Saved WiFi Password on Mac

Another great feature of Keychain Access is that you can also find the WiFi password that you have saved. So to do so, follow the below instructions.

1. Open Keychain Access, under Keychains from the top left side of the screen, click Systems.

2. Under category from the bottom left side of the screen, click Password. You can see all the WiFi networks; your Mac was connected to.

3. Select your desired network and double click on it.

4. Click the box beside Show Password and enter your Mac login password.

5. Now you can see the password of that network.

Keychain on Mac is a great feature and easy to use too. I wish Windows also had such a simple yet powerful tool to find and organize passwords.

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Facebook Messenger Features that Many People Don’t Know

Facebook messenger is around for a long time. Facebook also ensured that all the Facebook users on mobile device install this app. With over 1.3 billion users worldwide, you’d think that a handsome chunk of users using all the features Facebook is offering with Messenger. But you are wrong. Here are few interesting features on Facebook Messenger that you should be using but you are not.

Facebook-messenger-hidden-features

Top Facebook Messenger Features

All the features that I am going to listing are available on both iOS and Android version of Facebook Messenger.

1. Messenger for PC

We all know that Messenger is an app for Android and iOS but did you know that you can also access facebook messenger from your PC? No, I am talking about some Android emulator, there is a first party way of accessing all the features of Messenger from your PC and Mac. Open up your browser and type messenger.com and log in with your Facebook credential.

Now you can chat with your friends and colleagues without opening Facebook.

2. Add someone to your Friendslist Instantly by Scanning Code

facebook-profile-code
Image Credit: Verge

Facebook lets you add anyone to your friends without ever going to Facebook and searching for their name. You can instantly add them to our friendliest and start your conversation. This is especially great when you are in a hurry and want to send someone something on Facebook but can’t wait to go through the traditional way of adding friend.

To do this, open your Messenger app, go to your profile by clicking on your profile picture from the top right corner. Then tap again on your profile picture on the center. Now you can share your code with the friend, or you can scan their code. Either way, you both will be connected instantly.

3. Start Secret Conversation

facebook-secret-conversation

Sadly spying is a real thing in this digital age. There is no way you can think that all your conversations are secret. But if you really want to start a conversation that you don’t want others to snoop, then you should start a secret conversation using Facebook messenger. These chats are end-to-end encrypted where no can see what you two are talking about not even government or Facebook itself.

To start an encrypted secret conversation, open up your Messenger app tap on the new message and then secret conversation. Choose the person and start talking. If you want your messages to be disappeared after a certain time, then tap on clock icon right next to your typing area.

4. Play Games

Yes, Facebook also allows you to play games from your Messenger app. No these are not any competitive multiplayer games, but these are good enough to play in your free time. There are a lot of games from Solitaire to Basketball and EverWing. You can play alone, or you can invite your friends to play along.

5. Send and Request Money

facebook-payments-on-messenger

This is another great feature of Facebook Messenger where you can send and request money from your Facebook friends. Like many other money transfer platforms, here also you have to connect your card to Facebook and every time you need to send money to someone from facebook you can do so in just a few taps.

To add your cards, go to profile>Payment>Add a New card and start sending and requesting money from your Facebook friends.

Note- Facebook Payment is only available for few countries. Please check before sending someone.

6. Send Text From Messenger

Messenger is also a great text application which you can use as a strong alternative to your default messaging app. The benefit of this app is that you can chat with your Facebook friend while you can also text somebody all from one app.

There are also many other features available on Messenger from Facebook. For example, you can chat with bots, share flight routes, plan a trip, split the bill among your friends, customize your chat, send graphics and loads of other features. You need to explore all the features that Messenger has to offer to fully utilize the power of the Messenger app. Stay tuned to The Converging Network for more such informative articles.

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