How to make an old android phone feel new again computerworld

Tap the menu icon in the app’s upper-left corner, select "Settings," then select "Back up & sync" and activate the toggle that appears. (If the toggle was already activated when you got there, congrats! Take a victory sip of the nearest beverage and jump ahead to the next paragraph.) Follow the steps to set up syncing and then wait while Photos backs up your entire image and video collection to the cloud. [ Take this mobile device management course from PluralSight and learn how to secure devices in your company without degrading the user experience. ]

Got it? Good. Next, grab Google’s free Files Go app and open it up. Once you grant the app permission to access your phone’s storage, it’ll show you a series of suggestions for freeing up space on your device.


Look in particular for cards directing you to remove junk files, duplicate files, downloaded files, large files, and now-redundant copies of your cloud-synced photos and videos. JR Raphael / IDG

The Files Go app we just installed is an excellent starting point for figuring out what to eliminate. On its main screen, you should see a card labeled "Unused apps" that lists every program you haven’t opened in at least four weeks. Tap it and scan through the list. In my experience, it sometimes gets things wrong — for instance, it might include a keyboard app that you haven’t technically "opened" (as in, touched the icon in your app drawer) but most certainly have used — but if nothing else, it’ll get you thinking about what you do and don’t actually need.

With that knowledge in mind, mosey over to the "Apps" section of your system settings, look for the command to view all of your installed apps, and look carefully through the complete list. With each app, ask yourself: Have I even thought about this within the last few months? If not, then you probably don’t need it. Tap it, then tap the "Uninstall" button — and move on with your life.

If an app came preinstalled on your phone and can’t be uninstalled, look for the button to disable it instead. (Use common sense with this, of course, and don’t disable anything that appears to be a system-level utility. Apps such as Carrier Services, Exchange Services, Google Play Services, and SIM Toolkit are prime examples of things you shouldn’t attempt to disable.)

A third-party launcher can freshen things up on both fronts, with no real downsides involved — and you’ve got no shortage of commendable options. The free Lawnchair Launcher is a fine place to start; it gives you a clean, simple, and speedy home screen environment modeled off of Google’s Pixel Launcher setup (though with many more features and opportunities for customization). JR Raphael / IDG

Now, scroll down until you see a section labeled "Drawing." There, you should find three animation-related settings: "Window animation scale," "Transition animation scale," and "Animator duration scale." Tap each of those and change its value to "Animation scale .5x" (and make sure you’re selecting ".5x" — with a decimal). JR Raphael / IDG

If you think there’s room for further improvement, you can try heading back to that same menu and changing those settings to "Animation off." It’s a more extreme jump — and for most people, the ".5x" setting will be the optimal middle ground — but if your phone is seriously lagging, it’s an option worth exploring. Step 8: Perform a factory reset