Skip to content

what are they for and which should we activate

23 mayo, 2021

Android has many options to configure the mobile to our liking. We can go to settings and there touch the screen or the sound, but there is also a section for advanced called “developer options”. In this hidden menu we have a long list of settings that often go unnoticed but can help us in specific situations.

How can we access the Android development options? The first step is to activate them and for this you will have to go to Settings> Device information and press seven times on the build number. Once we press repeatedly, we will get a message of “Now you are a developer!”. Then you just have to go back and in the list of settings this new section called Development options will appear at the end.

The question we will try to solve here is what are all Android development options for and what is their function. A list to try to quickly discern which ones can be useful to us and understand all the possibilities that we have in our Android, whatever the manufacturer.

Main development options

Developer Options

Create bug report

This option can be used in two ways, but both with the same purpose: an interactive report and a complete one. It is about preparing a text document with a lot of information that shows the general operation of the mobile and lets you know if something is wrong. Very useful when we have a problem and we want to share information in a forum or website so that they can solve it for us.

Password copy computer

If we connect our Android to the PC and we have activated USB debugging, we can use ADB commands to make a backup of our Android. Through this option we can also create a password so that this backup is encrypted and only accessible by us.

Screen active / always on when charging

A very clear option. If we activate it, the screen will never go to sleep while we are charging, very useful if, for example, we watch a movie from our mobile or tablet and we do not want it to turn off.

Enable HCI inspection and capture log via Bluetooth

Through here we can enable a developer or security expert to analyze the Bluetooth HCI (Host Controller Interface) via Bluetooth. If it is activated, a packet is generated on the device in the path (/sdcard/btsnoop_hci.log) and from there with tools such as Wireshark it can be analyzed.

Enable OEM Unlock

If you want to remove the protection of your Android this option you must activate. In some mobiles the bootloader is already unlocked, in the rest through here we can do it and then the anti-theft protection that allows us, among other things, to root the mobile will be removed.

Image color mode

On AMOLED screens, an option is added to activate sRGB mode. This is a very common way to calibrate the screen that provides different tones; generally less saturated, but also somewhat more muted.

Execution services

This option sends us to a section where the memory of the device is shown, what the applications and the active processes occupy at all times. You can also see the applications that are in cache and how much they occupy. An essential section to control all the resources consumed.

Webview implementation

Webview is the process that allows applications to have an internal browser to connect to the internet. Before it was its own application but as of Android 7.0 Nougat, it is the Chrome app itself that acts as a webview. From this setting we can decide which is the predefined application for it.

Enable multithreaded Webview

Android wants this option to be activated by default in the future. From Android Nougat, Webview is allowed to be multithreaded and manage memory more efficiently.

Automatic system updates

If we activate this option, the system itself will look for new updates and we will directly jump the notice to update. If we do not have it activated, we will have to press each time to check if there are new versions.

Demo mode

Through this option we can activate the demo mode. It is very useful to take screenshots always showing the same status bar, clear of notifications, with the network at maximum coverage and the battery at maximum.

Debug development options

Android Usb Debugging

USB debugging

Activating this mode is essential to access from the computer once the Android SDK is installed. If we want to exchange data between the PC and our mobile or we want to configure it, we must do it with this option activated. If you are used to fiddling with your Android, you probably have it activated.

Revoke USB debugging permissions

From here we can remove access to USB debugging from all previously authorized computers. A kind of clearing cache when taking into account if you have already connected to that PC before, since when they connect, security keys are generated.

Always ask when connecting to USB

Simple option. If we activate it, we will get a warning when we connect it by USB asking us if we are safe and in what way we want to do it.

Allow ADB debugging in load-only mode

Normally when we use the ADB commands the mobile is not connected in the charge only mode. With this option the mobile will be charged and we will be able to continue working. It is recommended to disable it when you disconnect from the PC.

Select application to simulate location

There are several applications that allow us to fool the mobile and make it believe that we are somewhere else. They are applications that deceive the GPS, from here we will select the application that the system takes into account when determining our location.

Enable view attribute inspection

With this option the view attributes of the Android System Manager are activated. If we do a logcat we will see the events differently.

Select debugging application

This setting allows you to select an application for debugging and prevent error messages from appearing. An option to force applications to run as they should.

Wait for the debugger

Related to the previous one. With prevents the application from starting until the debugger is activated.

Verify applications via USB

It allows Google to scan applications that you have installed via ADB or ADT and detect if they can be harmful. An extra layer of security that comes in handy in the case that we install applications that way.

Logger buffer size

From 64KB to 16MB, in the development options we can set the size for java. The usual was 32Kb, but it depends a lot on the architecture of the device’s CPU. If we establish a very large buffer, we will notice a greater latency between the sound when we speak and when they receive it, although it will also consume less.

Increase brightness to read in the sun

This is an option to improve contrast and make the letters better defined when direct light hits. Although in most tests the results are quite unsatisfactory.

Development options for networking

Wifi Development Options

Enable detailed WiFi logs

Through a logcat, if we have this option enabled, a developer can access much more precise information about what the Wi-Fi is being used for. We do not recommend activating it unless you are going to use it.

Intensive handover from WiFi to mobile network

If we activate this option, when we have bad WiFi coverage, it will automatically go to mobile data. With this we will gain in battery since you will not need to constantly search for WiFi and you will not need to disconnect the WiFi when leaving home. On the other hand, we may get some surprise with the data since it may connect to them and we thought we were under the WiFi.

Always allow WiFi search while roaming

Imagine that we have two WiFi accesses with the same name, but one of them has a better signal than the other. With this option, it will allow the mobile to access the SSID that interests us most at all times. Although of course, we will see a slight increase in battery consumption as we are looking for less times.

Always-on mobile data

When we activate the WiFi, the mobile data is turned off so as not to waste or consume battery. With this option the data will remain active in the background and what we gain is that when the WiFi disappears the change will be much faster since they will already be active.

Select USB settings

When connecting the USB to the computer we can do it in different ways. From here we will choose them. We have from only load, Media Transfer Protocol (MTP), Picture Transfer Protocol (PTP), RNDIS (USB Ethernet), audio and MIDI. The most common is the upload mode or if we want to transfer files, the usual thing is to use MTP and turn our mobile into a multimedia device.

Disable absolute volume

If we connect a bluetooth headset and we want to control the volume independently, we should activate this function. We eliminate the maximum volume that in some cases is very annoying. In Android 6.0 it gave problems, but in Nougat 7.0 it was corrected.

Developer options on pointers, animations and drawing

Animations Development Options

Show scores

We go to settings that modify what is shown on the screen and how it is done. The first is to show tapping, if it is activated every time we press the screen, a small circle will appear that marks where we have clicked. Minimalist and only lasts a few seconds.

Pointer location

Another adjustment to show the location of our touches, but it is much more complete. It will leave the entire route of our last touch gesture marked on the screen, with the coordinates and even with the pressure applied.

Show screen updates

We do not notice it, but the screen of our mobile is constantly updated. If we activate this option, it will light up every time it changes, with a very striking pink flicker. Only recommended if we want to find out when the screen is active and the content has changed.

Show design limits

Very curious. When activated, it will show us the borders of each screen element. With this we will know how far that section reaches and the limits where our touch will activate it. It offers a lot of information about how the mobile menus are arranged.

Window animation scale

Since the arrival of Material Design to Android, animations play a very important role. They are a key element to give a feeling of fluidity or show striking and effective transitions. Here we can configure the speed at which the windows open and …