5 Google App Tips and Tricks


Google is everywhere. The technology corporation has expanded and become a household name (even a verb in the dictionary) and there’s a better than 50% chance that you have a host of Google’s apps on your phone right now. But, in the nature of all tech companies, Google is constantly changing and updating and making little tweaks to its app suite which your average user probably is completely unaware. This week Ting published a Ting Tip on how to zoom in to Google Maps with one hand and it pretty much blew my mind. Talk about convenient; how did I not know this even existed! I mean, I’m a tech blogger–I’m supposed to know these things, right? Anyway, it made me start to wonder what other Google tricks we are all missing out on. So, I looked around a bit, and here are 5 of the most useful tips and tricks that I found:

One-handed zoom in/out – Maps, Chrome

Obviously this one is my current favorite as Google Maps and tiny Chrome print are the banes of my existence. So, to zoom in double tap and hold with one finger, then drag up and down to scroll in and out. To zoom out in Maps, double tap the screen with two fingers. in Chrome you can use one or two fingers to zoom both in and out. Sweet!

Instant Directions – Maps

I think a lot of people know this one, but it saves a lot of time, so I’m including it anyway. After all, when most people pull open Google Maps, it’s to get turn-by-turn directions. So why on Earth does Google make it so complicated? Well, turns out that you can actually enter the address and then tap the little blue button in the bottom right corner to start navigating there immediately.

Explore Nearby – Maps

Looking for something to do? On your smartphone, launch Google Maps with location services on. The phone should pinpoint your city and you’ll see a menu at the bottom that you can press to see some of the more popular locations in your area. Cool, huh?

Unsend an Email – Gmail

There’s nothing worse than hitting “Send” and realizing that you just sent a joke meant for a friend to your boss or you mother. However, the email gods have finally answered our prayers and created an “unsend” button which is turned off by default. While you can unsend from your gmail app, the setting is not available in the app itself, so you’ll have to use a computer to enable it.

Here’s how to turn it on:

– Go to your Settings – In the General Tab, scroll down to Undo Send – Check the box to enable and set a second limit. I recommend at least 30 just to be on the safe side

Once you have it enabled, you should be able to undo sent emails. Whew!

Use less data – Chrome

If you’re really big into browsing, then you can actually enable something called a Data Saver mode in Chrome. It’ll make things load just a tiny bit slower, but will save you quite  a bit of data overall.

Here’s how to turn it on:

– Tap the three dots in the upper right hand corner – Select “Settings” – Scroll down and tap Data Saver – Slide the toggle to turn it on

There is a notice on the toggle page that it might interfere with “premium data services provided by your carrier” but I personally haven’t noticed any difference. Pages do sometimes load a little slower, but it’s definitely worth it.

Do you have any other tips or tricks that you’d like to share? Tell me about it in the comments!]]>

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