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Do you have a Galaxy S23? Make sure to do these 10 things first

Samsung has launched the Galaxy S23 series, the next generation of its flagship Android smartphone lineup. Those who want a top-notch device will want to check out the Galaxy S23 Ultra, with its stunning 200MP camera and 10x optical zoom. But for everyone else, there’s the Galaxy S23 and Galaxy S23 Plus, and they’re about the same, but if you prefer more base storage and a bigger screen, choose the S23 Plus over the standard S23.

I got the Galaxy S23 last week, and if you’re an Android newbie (I still am after being an iPhone user most of my life), there’s a lot you can do to customize the S23 to your liking. Here are a few things you should do once you have your new Galaxy S23 in your hands!

Customize the lock screen

Customize the Samsung Galaxy S23 lock screen
Christine Romero Chan/Digital Trends

The lock screen is the first thing you see when you pick up your phone and wake it up, so it’s important that it contains the information you need. With Samsung’s One UI 5.1, which is what comes with it, you can easily customize the lock screen.

All you have to do is activate the device so that it is on the lock screen. Then press and hold on the lock screen to bring up the lock screen editor. It’s similar to how Apple did it on the iPhone with iOS 16, but you have more options. From here, you can change the wallpaper, clock style, and notification style, as well as add contact information (in case you lose your phone) and even change two app shortcuts.

Change the color of the user interface to match your wallpaper

Changed the UI color palette on the Galaxy S23 to match the background
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One of the great things about Android is that you can change the color scheme of the entire user interface to match your wallpaper, assuming you’re not using a theme. Unfortunately, it seems that if you’re already using a theme, the theme will override this setting. But if you stick with the default theme, but have a background you like, the colors of the user interface, which includes things like buttons and text, can be changed to match.

To do this, you just need to go to Settings > Background & Pattern > Color Palette. Clicking on a color palette gives you a quick preview before applying it. The panel can also be applied to most of the application icons as well.

Adjust dark mode settings

Samsung Galaxy S23 dark mode settings
Christine Romero Chan/Digital Trends

I’m an avid dark mode user, no matter what phone I’m on — and the Galaxy S23 is no exception. One of the first things I do on any phone is to turn on dark mode, otherwise the whites on the screen blind my aging eyes.

To turn on dark mode on your S23, go to Settings > Display > Darkness. If you don’t want dark mode all the time, you can click Dark mode settings and turning on dark mode automatically on a custom schedule, or it could be from sunset to sunrise.

Set the navigation bar

Samsung Galaxy S23 navigation bar or gesture menu
Christine Romero Chan/Digital Trends

Since Android 10, there has been full support for gesture-based navigation, which is a step above button-based navigation before. These days, most Android phones use gesture-based navigation out of the box, but Samsung—for whatever reason—continues to use buttons as the default navigation. Fortunately, you can change that, and it’s one of the first things I change.

go to Settings > Display > Navigation bar (You may need to scroll down a bit). Choose whether you want buttons or swipe gestures, then tap Swipe gestures for more options.

Play around with the Edge Panels feature

Edge panels on the Samsung Galaxy S23
Christine Romero Chan/Digital Trends

Edge Panels is a feature on Samsung phones that adds a launcher to the side of the screen for your favorite apps, features, and even contacts. When the feature is active, you have a thin “knob” on the edge of the screen, which you can open by pulling it out. It’s highly customizable, too.

First, you’ll want to make sure that Edge Panels is turned on. This can be done by going to Settings > Display > Edge Panels Make sure the toggle is set to On. eavesdropping handle It allows you to adjust the position, lock it in place, change the color, and more.

When you pull down the Edge Panel, the first three apps use Recents by default (you can turn that off if you’d like more app shortcuts), but the rest can be customized by tapping the pencil button at the bottom. From there, you can choose the apps you want, and if you have more than five, it will turn into a two-column list. You can also tap the 3×3 grid button next to the pencil to easily bring up the app launcher at any time, instead of returning to the home screen.

Turn on experimental features to get new experimental features

Samsung Galaxy S23 Labs
Christine Romero Chan/Digital Trends

For those who want to live with the latest technology, Labs is definitely something you’ll want to run. Labs are basically beta features that Samsung is testing — think of it as a public beta for upcoming gadgets. Samsung gives a warning that some Labs features may not work correctly with all apps, so use them at your own risk!

To access Labs, go to Settings > Advanced Features > Labs. Then select the toggle button for each experimental feature you want to try. Some of Labs’ current features include the ability to launch any app in a popup, as well as a swipe gesture to enter split-screen mode.

Customize your side key

The side of the Galaxy S23 Ultra shows the position of its button.
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The Side Switch on the Galaxy S23 can do more than just turn the device on or off. You can perform more actions with it, depending on whether you tap it twice or press and hold.

By default, double-pressing the side key will quickly launch the camera app, and pressing and holding will wake Bixby. However, you can change what the button does under these circumstances by going to Settings > Advanced features > Side switch. You can even turn off the double tap option if you prefer. Other options include choosing the app you prefer. For example, the press and hold option can be changed to show the shutdown menu instead of Bixby, which is useful if you don’t care about Bixby.

Turn on the notification log

Samsung Galaxy S23 notification log
Christine Romero Chan/Digital Trends

As someone who has primarily used an iPhone for the past decade, I’ve found that Android does notifications Much better from iOS. One useful notification feature is the notification history, especially if you’re the type who tends to snooze or dismiss notifications.

Notification history is a screen that allows you to see all the notifications that you have snooped or dismissed, as well as a complete history of all the notifications you have received over the past 24 hours. But this isn’t on by default, so you need to make sure it’s enabled if you want to use it.

go to Settings > Notifications > Advanced settings > Notification history And turn on the toggle button. Once it is enabled, you can view your notification history by tapping date button in the notifications panel, or view it from a file settings application by following the same steps above.

Enable the constant brightness slider

The Quick Settings panel on the Samsung Galaxy S23 Plus.
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One of the most useful features in Android is the quick settings panel, which houses quick access to common system settings like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, Airplane mode, power saving, and more. But a setting you may want to adjust frequently is brightness, which is tucked awkwardly away in the quick panel by default. Out of the box, you need to swipe down twice from the top of the S23’s screen to change the screen brightness.

However, you can change that and make sure the brightness slider is available with one swipe down. To do this, swipe down twice from the top of the screen, select the three vertical dots buttons in the upper right, then quick panel layout, and then Brightness control. The default can be changed to Always Show, and it will be there without you having to swipe twice.

Edit buttons in quick settings

Quick customization of the Samsung Galaxy S23 board
Christine Romero Chan/Digital Trends

Your quick settings contain a lot of shortcuts to commonly used system settings, but sometimes it contains things by default that you might not even use. Fortunately, you can change the buttons at any time.

Just pop out the quick settings down, expand it, and then select the vertical dot button again. Then select editing buttons. You’ll see which buttons are available to you in the top half, and what’s currently on the quick panel in the bottom half. To remove something, just drag it to the top, then drag the button to where you want it when adding a button. It’s easy to customize the express panel to exactly what you need and get rid of things you’ll never touch.

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