Android 12 is certainly an operating system that knows how to be loved by users, but still has some problems and some bugs that could be annoying.
Especially for those who use a Pixel smartphone, the improvements made with this new OS make the interface and functionality extremely appreciable, but sometimes it also has less pleasant sides. Sometimes it is simply the habit of the previous version, sometimes it is real aspects overlooked by the developers.
If we previously explored some features such as the Privacy Dashboard, today we will go to find the small defects of Android 12 and, of course, the techniques to remedy those imperfections.
The lock screen clock is too big
The most common Android 12 complaint we hear about is undoubtedly the ridiculously large size of the lock screen clock.
We can understand that this solution has been adopted for the visually impaired, but actually, the numbers are a bit exaggerated in terms of magnitude. This consideration is made mainly from a Pixel perspective, as some Android devices may have more acceptable measurements.
How, then, can be remedied by bringing the magnitude of the numbers back to acceptable levels? Unfortunately, there isn’t a simple toggle to resize the clock at this point, but there is an easy way around this problem. And here’s the secret: that giant version of the clock never appears when you have an active notification present.
If you want to keep the gigantic numbers away, all you need to do is make sure that a notification always appears. And you have some cool options to do it easily and automatically:
- Weather: Apps like Appy Weather and Today Weather offer the ability to keep a persistent weather notification active 24/7. the size of the watch.
- Calendar: A handy app called Calendar Notify inserts the current date into the status bar and displays upcoming calendar events through an ever-present notification.
- Custom Notifications: We’re talking about a hidden Play Store gem called Remind Me that lets you create your own custom notification that can stay on screen indefinitely.
Any solution of this type, of course, will have a more or less substantial weight in terms of the battery. The hope is that the Google developers, as soon as possible, will revise the size of the numbers bringing them back to normal.
Material You and icons
In addition to hidden things, Android 12 introduces a completely new design language that revolves around Material You. Part of its appeal is the way it automatically assigns themes to the entire Android experience, from widgets to icons on the home screen to details in the notification panel.
The problem, however, is that if you choose to use a custom Android launcher instead of your device’s default home screen setup, you completely lose the Material You magic with your most displayed icons.
If you are a lover of customization, however, there are those who have thought about your needs. In fact, a developer has come up with a way to bring the Material You icons of the home screen to any device. As long as the launcher you are using supports custom icon packs (and most popular third-party launchers do), simply download the Pix Material You icon set from the Play Store and set it as an icon selection within the settings of the launcher in use.
For just under two euros, the app will integrate with any launcher and automatically adapt the theme of all icons to match the current wallpaper at any given time. With this app and a bit of imagination, you can do very interesting things aesthetically.
One of the best features of last year’s Android 11 release was the addition of an in-depth power menu that lets you access all sorts of useful device controls, coupled with the standard shutdown and restart commands.
For some strange reason, however, with Android 12 the developers have taken a step back, eliminating this very interesting feature. While there’s not much you can do to bring the power menu back from the past, you can at least make it a little easier to access the once-available controls that easily.
The trick is to find the new Device Controls pane, often neatly hidden (and potentially even disabled by default) in your phone’s Quick Settings area, and then move it to one of the top four available locations. This will ensure that it is always at your fingertips, no matter where you are or what you are doing on your device.
In this sense, you can act as follows:
- Swipe down twice from the top of the screen, then tap the pencil icon in the lower right corner of the Quick Settings area ;
- scroll all the way down until you see a box labeled Device Controls ;
- once found, hold your finger on it and drag it to one of those first four points;
- tap the left-pointing arrow in the top left corner of the screen.
That’s all. Now you can just swipe down once to open the Quick Settings view and then tap on Device Controls to bring up that nifty menu. And if you want to give it an extra touch of customization, select the three-dot menu icon in the top right corner to set it up and add/delete anything you want.
Volume control irritant
Speaking of volume control issues, one Android 12 annoyance that has existed since the Android 10 era is the software’s habit of adjusting the media playback volume by default every time you press the device’s physical volume buttons. This change still drives many Android users crazy, and with good reason.
But if you’d rather have your phone’s volume buttons adjust the ringer volume by default, as in some older versions of Android, there’s a surprisingly easy way to handle this. We are talking about the Volume Styles app.
This software allows you to replace the stock Android volume interface with one that you can customize to your liking, including changing the volume type which is adjusted by default.
Just install the app, open it and tap the Customize tab at the bottom. Tap Slider types, then tap the dots next to Ring volume with your finger and you can manage this specific volume type as you see fit. When done, tap the OK button, then scroll to the top of the screen and tap the big Start button.
The app will ask you to grant it permission to act as an accessibility service, which is heavy permission but legitimately required for it to be able to do what it needs to do (bearing in mind that software and developer seem very trustworthy). At that point, every time you tap the phone’s volume keys, you’ll see the ringer volume first.
Volume Styles’ basic features are free, although some of its more advanced customization options (unrelated to this change) require a $ 2 in-app purchase.
The wrong power button
Last but not least, in our list of Android 12 annoying behaviors, there is a problem present mainly on the new Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro (apparently it’s not the only one ). On such phones, Android 12 comes with a curious default setting where a long press of the power button doesn’t open the standard power menu at all but invokes the Google Assistant.
To access the power menu, you have to press the power button and the volume up button together, which is awkward for a 2021 phone.
However, if you are the owner of a Pixel 6, know that you will not always have to deal with this strange combo to turn on your smartphone. On any phone with Google’s version of Android 12, you can find an option to go back to simply using a key to turn on the smartphone.
Just open the System entry of your phone’s settings, tap Gestures, then tap Press and hold the power button. On the next screen, slide the switch next to Hold for an assistant (or Hold for an assistant on some devices) to turn it off, then you’ll be back to the usual way to turn an Android smartphone on and off.
These flaws, although small, partially undermine the experience with Android 12. In any case, thanks to user feedback, there is the hope that Google developers will proceed with corrective patches to make their operating system if not perfect almost.