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Top 10 most useless features on Android

Top 10 most useless features on Android

Smartphones, regardless of the manufacturer, are chock-full of features: voice or gesture commands, applications and varied interfaces… but, sometimes, some of these are really gimmicky and lack any real actual use and often get in the way of a fluid Android experience. Today we’ve compiled 10 functions that we consider to be the most useless on today’s Android devices.

smartphone trash
© AndroidPIT

The O Touch panel - Oppo N1

The Oppo N1 has many useful features, but then there’s the touch panel on the back-side of the device, which goes by the name of O Touch. In theory, it was intended to provide the user with some quick gestures, like launching the camera by tapping it twice, for example. In practice, it’s a whole other story: the 4x4 cm panel on the back is hardly detectable. When attempting to use this feature, be prepared for bursts of frustration and hand cramps. The only advantage: if you don’t use it, it will leave you alone.

Digital fingerprint scanner - HTC One Max

Opinions on the HTC One Max are split right down the middle, but the objective here isn’t to aid either side of the argument. That being said, you have to admit that a smartphone of such an impressive size would be quite hard to handle one-handed, which is a digital fingerprint scanner wasn’t really such a clever idea after all. Not only is this feature not very useful, it’s pretty much impossible to use without making your life a lot more difficult. Next!

htc one max video 1
© AndroidPIT

Screen capture with palm swipe - Galaxy S3 and S4

It’s not hard to see that Samsung has been trying to revolutionize the world of motion gestures for smartphones, but let’s face the facts: once you discover some of these new gestures on your device, the chances of you using them again after trying a first time are slim. One of these hand motions is the palm swipe to capture feature. For those who don’t want to do a little kung-fu Samsung-style overtop of the display, there is a simple button combination to take a screenshot on the Galaxy S3 and S4.

effet realite augmentee
/ © AndroidPIT

Augmented reality effects - Sony Xperia Z1 and Z2

It gets even better. The Sony Xperia Z1 and the Xperia Z2 provide users with a very interesting camera feature for video and pictures: you can add augmented reality effects. This means that, depending on which theme you choose, you’ll suddenly be wearing a scuba diving helmet with fish swimming around you, or it’s carnival and you get an afro….or dinosaurs star terrorizing the scene! The only reason to explain this function is that the developers were likely on the same stuff as Alice in Wonderland, because otherwise, I just don’t get it.

HTC picture stickers - HTC One (M8)

Just like the AR effects on the Sony Xperia Z1 and Z2, this one lands in the same category of randomness. The HTC One (M8) allows users to add stickers to their images. There are some very odd ones too, like colored sunglasses, cowboy hats, gold chains and even a gas mask. You might use it once or twice to ‘spice up’ your pictures, but soon this editing option will land in the abyss of useless features never to be seen again.

face unlock teaser
© Google

Smart gestures: face unlock - Galaxy S3 and S4

This is one of the most useless features that was ever created. Not only does the function to unlock the lock screen with your face not work in the dark, it’s not very secure. Having a code or pattern for an unlocking method is not only more secure, it doesn’t waste any of your precious time. Also, I don’t want to see my face every time I unlock my phone, which I do about every 30 seconds.

Sound & Shot - Galaxy S4

Here we go again with Samsung and the Galaxy S4 camera, which is full to the brim with various software features. One of these is Sound & Shot which records sound for 6 seconds after the picture is taken to add a little ‘’ambiance’. What you will likely hear is something like ‘move to the left, ok a little to the right….’.

© AndroidPIT

Tap to unlock - Nokia X

LG was successful in creating the KnockOn feature where you tap twice on the screen in order to unlock the screen. It saves the users a few seconds of time, which is probably why Nokia decided to offer something similar with the Nokia X. The only thing is that Nokia added this function to the entire device, so front, back, etc, which means that the smartphone often turns on when sticking it your pocket or purse. This is more pesky than useful.

Eye scroll - Galaxy S4

It makes sense that Samsung would be in this list more than any other manufacturer, after all, they are the only ones that offer so many different features and some are bound to turn out useless. One of these is eye scroll, which like the name says, uses the movement of your eyes to scroll up and down on a page. The idea isn’t bad, but in practice, it’s the pits. Instead of actually helping, it just gets irritating.

dual camera
 © AndroidPIT

Dual camera mode - Galaxy, HTC and LG smartphones

We’re sorry to keep ragging on Samsung, because in fact, we actually like the feature they present most of the time, but there are some you just have to ask yourself why! Samsung isn’t the only culprit from this next features, some newer LG devices also included it, as well as the HTC One (M8): dual camera mode, which activates the front and back camera at the same time, meaning your face will appear in a tiny box on the viewfinder image. It’s a funny image, that could be used to capture your expression in relation to your feelings about what you are taking a picture of, but aside form that, it’s just a gimmick

In your opinion, what software features do you consider to be useless on today’s Android devices?

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  • palm swipe is very useful....wen it works though.. its a pain wen you have to swipe several times to get the shot... but for the most part its great... in fact I've had my s3 for over a year and just figured out theres a button combo to take screen shots...

  • Apparently, ignorance and good marketing go hand in hand!! I have a bridge for sale and will even throw in a toll booth for free if you hurry and buy it within the next 24 hours!! Guaranteed to make you hundreds of thousands of dollars in tolls! You can retire in just a couple of years!! Sounds stupid, doesn't it? Point made!

  • Agree wid u on other points

  • Palm swipe feature is seriously good
    I have used many a times

  • I use the Palm Swipe to capture screenshots on my Note 2 all the time. I find it very convenient.

  • This blog should be called The Galaxy´s garbage, instead of Top 10 Most useless feature on Android device ... and then I wonder why the Galaxy have been a success and have been sold like cookies having all these kind of gimmick inside??... Sometimes when I read blogs in Androidpit I ask myself: It´s Samsung an Androidpit enemy??

    • Well, we are under the impression that Samsung packs many features that aren't always necessary for day-to-day usage, but it is of course a matter of opinion. AndroidPIT does love their Nexus devices to be perfectly honest with you, but in the past we have also been called SamsungPIT. I personally like the look of TouchWiz, especially now with KitKat and the S5, and have enjoyed my Galaxy S3 for a long time and loved trying out the S5. So, no Samsung is not our enemy, rather a friend we from time to time don't always see eye to eye with ;-)

  • Darryl Apr 23, 2014 Link to comment

    I know Face Unlock isn't the most secure unlock feature, but I have been using it for at least a year and find it really convenient.

  • I think the palm swipe for capturing a screenshot is a fantastic idea, I find using button combinations difficult & have dropped a phone on a number of occassions when trying to take a screenshot via button combo.

    • That is a good reason for the palm swipe then! I personally had never used it much and for me it was a matter of what I was used to. Glad to know that it isn't so ''useless'' after all :)

  • I do agree with most of the so-called features here but I beg to differ with two of these viz. Eye scroll and Dual camera mode. I've used the eye scroll when I'm busy copying some info from the Web onto paper (no, not plagiarism :-P) and it's just incredibly useful. The smart stay feature prevents my phone from sleeping while I'm writing.
    As for Dual camera mode, I did use it on a recent trip to a famous garden. Kinda like a selfie with a wallpaper!

  • My1 Apr 22, 2014 Link to comment

    Palm swipe is NOT unneeded, on Note 2 most of my Screenshots were taken that way

    • Yeah dude, I totally agree. Instead of fiddling around with buttons or scratching your head trying to remember the button combination, it's easier to swipe away! BTW it's way more cooler.

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