The first 15 things you should do with your OnePlus 5T

Everything you need to do to get the best out of your shiny new OnePlus 5T

So ya want one of them skinny bezel smartphones that are all the rage right now? It’ll cost you a pretty penny - unless you use your noggin and pick up a OnePlus 5T, that is.

This cut-price hero costs half the price of some top-end flagship phones, but still packs in all the features you’d want, like dual cameras, a super-speedy Snapdragon CPU, and Dash Charging to keep you topped up without having to wait around.

It also has one of the best versions of Android around, with OxygenOS adding great new features without making things so complex you’re scared to swipe beyond the home screen.

A few of ‘em are a bit hidden away behind the scenes - but we’ve been digging, to find them all and let you know which ones are worth using. Here are the top tips every 5T owner should know.

1) Make up for missing buttons

 

The 5T is the first OnePlus phone to ditch hardware buttons altogether - there just wasn’t any room for ‘em on account of the new bezel-busting screen. Instead, you get virtual on-screen keys. They’re just as customisable as the old hardware ones, though.

Start simple by swapping the Back and Recents keys - handy if you're moving across from a Samsung phone, which has always flip-reversed its keys from the Android default. Head to Settings > Buttons and toggle the "Swap Buttons" switch to move Back to the right side of the screen, and Recents to theleft.

2) Set up custom button actions

You don't have to stick to the standard Home, Back and Recents shortcuts. You can force them to pull double or even triple duty, with a second set of actions activated with a long-press, and a third that recognise a double-tap. There are a handful of shortcuts to choose from, including turning off the screen, activating voice search, opening the widgets shelf, waking Google Assistant, and opening/closing split-screen mode.

To make your personalised picks, head to Settings > Buttons and tap on the Long press or Double tap option that matches the button you want to tweak.

3) Hide on-screen buttons completely

On-screen buttons are handy and all, but they can get in the way of your apps - shrinking down the amount of usable screen space and generally being irksome.

So hide them instead: head to Settings > Buttons and tap "Hide the navigation bar". This adds a fourth icon to the navigation bar, which hides the whole thing when you tap it. Want your buttons back? Swipe up from the bottom of the screen and they'll reappear instantly.

4) Easily reach the notification tray

An 18:9 screen is a whole lot taller than the 16:9 panels we're used to finding on our phones, and can mean stretching a lot further to reach the notification tray. Not everyone has big enough hands to do it without some serious finger yoga, but you can save your muscles by using the fingerprint scanner instead.

Head to Settings > Gestures and tap on "Swipe fingerprint for notifications" - now a quick swipe down on the rear scanner with any of your digits (not just the one that unlocks the phone) will pull down the notification tray. A second swipe up will fold it away again, no stretching required.

5) Put your widgets on a shelf

Android is great for customising everything to your liking, but a mountain of separate home screens can make it tricky to find your favourite widgets. OnePlus lets you keep everything in one place with the Shelf, a home for all your widgets.

Swipe right from your main home screen to see a few OnePlus-specific widgets like recent contacts, recently opened apps and notes. Then you can start adding your own. It scrolls infinitely, so you can have everything in one place.

To add a new widget, tap the Plus icon in the bottom right corner, then tap Widget. Once you're happy with your choice, press and hold until it pops, and drag it into position. To delete unwanted widgets, just tap and hold, then tap the cross icon to eradicate it from your list.

6) Slide your way to silence

Having to dig around the notification tray to toggle Do Not Disturb every time you step into the boss' office can be a pain - or maybe not, if you aren't hauled in there as often as we are. Still, the 5T makes this a much easier job with its Alert Slider. This three-stage precursor to the fidget spinner isn't just fun to flick up and down, it toggles between loud, vibrate and silent profiles. 

Out of the box, the top "silent" position mutes your music and ringtones, while the middle setting actively blocks messages and calls in Do Not Disturb mode. Any starred contacts can still get through, though, and repeat callers are given the OK too in case there's an emergency. Finally, the bottom setting lets your favourite ringtone ring out loud and proud whenever you get a notification,

If you want to change these modes, give it a flip and tap the cog icon that appears near the top of the screen to jump straight to the right Settings screen.

7) Relax your retinas with night mode

Been struggling to get a good night's sleep recently? It could be because your phone is pumping blue light into your eyeballs just before you're heading to bed. Which isn't good. Use Night Mode and the 5T will strip out this light, giving things a warmer, yellow hue that won't leave you counting sheep.

The 5T has an automatic mode, just like the OnePlus 5 does - which is miles better than having to manually toggle it on and off every night like you did on older phones. Head to Settings > Display and tap Night Mode, then select "Turn on automatically" and choose either a specific time, or leave it on sunrise-to-sunset. You can dial the effect up or down too, in case it's a little too yellow for your liking.

8) Feed your inner bookworm with Reading mode

An AMOLED panel is great and all, but for reading, E-ink still has the edge in viewing angles and bright light legibility. The 5T's Reading mode helps close that gap a little, scanning the room with the phone's ambient light sensor and adjusting the colour temperature on the fly. It only works with specific apps, though.

Go to Settings > Display and tap Reading mode to toggle it on manually, or choose from a list of your installed apps and have it activate automatically whenever you open a particular app.

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