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All about the notification panel and Android quick settings

24 mayo, 2021

The Android notification panel has been with us since the beginning and is one of the most important pillars of the operating system. In this article we have compiled everything you ever wanted to know about the notification panel and quick Android settings.

Although much of what we will see next will be very obvious for those who have been on Android for a long time, those that arrive new to the operating system The robot is not always clear about how things work or what is what. Here we will try to clarify some of these ideas.

What is the notification panel


Let’s start at the beginning, what exactly is the notification panel? The same name already gives us the clue that it is where Android notifications appear, that is, the place where you usually check if you have something pending, such as unread messages on WhatsApp or new interactions on a social network.

It is like the mail inbox, but for notifications

This panel shows the notifications you have received, whether you were looking at your mobile when they arrived or not. In a way it’s like the mail inbox, only that instead of being e-mails what are collected are notifications.

The way to display this panel has not changed for many years and luckily it remains the same in all Android mobile brands: sliding your finger down from the top, as if you were “pulling down a virtual blind”.

What are quick settings

Quick adjustments

For its part, the quick settings are part of this same tab, although they serve a quite different function. Basically, they are switches to turn things on or offsuch as turning Wi-Fi on or off, data, Bluetooth connection, activate airplane mode or turn on the flashlight.

Quick settings are used to easily activate or deactivate functions

Quick settings display on most layers in two ways. The first view, in the image above, on the left, is compact view, which shows only a handful of them. The second is the full view, where all quick settings are displayed.

The way to get to this window is the same as in the notifications: you must swipe down from the top of the screen. These settings are shown above the notifications, although if you want to see them all you need to display the panel, sliding down on them.

Notifications panel tricks

Although both Android panels are pretty basic, after ten years new behaviors and capabilities have been timidly added that you might have missed. This is what you can do from the notification panel.

Reply from the notification panel


Our immediate reaction after receiving a notification is generally tap on it and open the app. However, if many people are talking to you at the same time in several applications, the situation quickly becomes a mess.

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In such cases it is more comfortable tap on Reply, so that you can write the answer directly in the notification panel, without having to open the application. This option is not included in all applications, but it is present in the main messaging apps such as WhatsApp, Telegram or Facebook Messenger, to name a few.

Mark as read and other quick functions

Mark as read

Just as you can respond to notifications with messages that interest you, you can also do the same for messages that do not interest you. Although you could simply slide the notification to one of the sides to dismiss it, in the application would still be marked as an unread message.

An alternative is to tap on Mark as read, below the notification itself. Not all applications include this option, although more and more do. In this way, the notification disappears and the message is marked as read so that it will not bother you again.

Snooze notifications


There is a third possibility: that a notification is interesting … but not at that moment. If you are busy and you think that if you delete the notification you will forget to respond, an intermediate option is to postpone it. To do this, you must slightly slide the notification to the side until the clock icon is displayed.

After touching the clock the notification is saved and will be shown again an hour later. If you are not convinced by this time interval, tap on it to be able to choose between 15 minutes, 30 minutes or 2 hours.

Block certain notifications


Some apps send too many notifications. Some are useful, while others are not. The good news is that with Android Oreo came notification channels, which are more or less categories for the different notifications that an application can send. And you can block the sending of the channels that do not interest you.

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There are several ways to do this, but the easiest is to swipe a notification to the side until the options button (the gear) is displayed. When you touch on it you are asked if you want Stop notifications o Keep showing, that leaves everything as it was. Notifications from the same application, but of a different type, will continue to be received.

Prevent an app from sending notifications


From the notifications tab itself you have quick access to an even more drastic option: block all notifications from an app. To do so you must tap on Manage notifications.

The window that opens shows the latest applications that have sent you notifications. To deactivate them, uncheck the switch next to the app you want to block. You can change your mind at any time and reactivate it, although notifications that were not sent will not be sent retroactively.

Quick Settings Tips

While the notifications have changed and improved slightly with the different versions of Android, the quick settings remain largely the same. The biggest change they received came with Nougat, when the door was opened for applications add their own quick settings.

Sort Quick Settings


We mentioned before that the quick settings are shown in two ways: at the top of the notifications and in the full view. If you want you can change the order of settings, which also helps you choose which ones are always visible (the top row, normally).

To change the order of the quick settings you must display its full view and then tap the pen button. This will open the edit mode in which you can make a long touch in any of them to change its location. To do this, drag it to its new location.

Add new quick settings


Missing any cool quick tweaks? From Nougat, applications can add their own. It is not something very common, but some apps like Shazzam or Spotify already do it. To see the available settings you must go to edit mode, tapping on the pencil icon, and swipe until the bottom of the window is displayed.

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The settings at the bottom exist, but they are not shown in the list – and therefore you cannot use them – until you slip them in place, after making a long touch. We recently saw how they could be useful to keep the mobile screen on until further notice.