Ask Jerry: Why are new phones so difficult to set up?

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Welcome to Ask Jerry, the place we speak about any and all of the questions you may need concerning the sensible issues in your life. I am Jerry, and I’ve spent the higher a part of my life working with tech. I’ve a background in engineering and R&D and have been protecting Android and Google for the previous 15 years. 

Ask Jerry

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Ask Jerry is a column the place we reply your burning Android/tech questions with the assistance of long-time Android Central editor Jerry Hildenbrand.

I am additionally actually good at researching knowledge about every little thing — that is an enormous a part of our job right here at Android Central — and I like to assist individuals (one other large a part of our job!). You probably have questions on your tech, I might love to speak about them. 

Electronic mail me at, and I am going to attempt to get issues sorted out. You may stay nameless for those who like, and we promise we’re not sharing something we do not cowl right here.

I look ahead to listening to from you!

Why are new Android telephones so troublesome to arrange?

Galaxy S24 Plus with a green background

(Picture credit score: Derrek Lee / Android Central)

Nameless writes:

I simply received my mom a brand new cellphone and she or he is not very tech savvy. She’s having issue getting every little thing arrange the best way she is used to and it looks as if primary settings are unfold everywhere.

Why are issues like this? Is there a particular cause?


Hello anon! It is a nice query that reminds us that not everyone seems to be an entire Android nerd who is aware of precisely the place to look and what to do on the subject of altering cellphone settings. All of us began out this manner.

I am going to additionally let you know a secret — I’ve used a whole bunch of various Android telephones due to my job right here and have been utilizing Android since day one. I dread establishing a brand new cellphone as a result of digging via settings is tedious and time-consuming. It isn’t nearly “expertise” with Android. 

Typically, having a ton of settings is an effective factor. I like issues a sure method, so do you, and so does your mother — there is a good probability that what all of us like is totally different. One of the simplest ways to let every of us set issues up how we like is to interrupt out every little thing right into a setting. 

The dangerous a part of that is precisely what you point out, and a whole bunch of settings unfold over totally different classes could also be a crucial evil, however that does not change how a lot of a ache it may be!

OnePlus 12 screen

(Picture credit score: Harish Jonnalagadda / Android Central)

That is amplified as a result of every producer does every little thing in another way on the subject of these settings pages. Samsung is totally different from Google, Google is totally different from Motorola, Motorola is totally different from OnePlus and so forth. As well as, each new model of Android appears to maneuver issues round, too.

This is not executed to drive customers loopy although. Every cellphone producer thinks how they do it’s one of the simplest ways and wish to create the very best consumer expertise attainable, even on the subject of setting every little thing up. 

This might be “mounted” by making settings one thing that cellphone makers cannot change, solely including extras to cowl particular {hardware} utilized in a cellphone. No one ought to need this although! A part of what makes Android nice is how every cellphone maker could make it higher, and the way Google is wise sufficient to let it occur. 

One thing that might be executed higher, and ought to be in my view, is backing up all of your settings via a instrument provided by every cellphone producer. While you commerce in your Galaxy S21 for a brand new Galaxy S24, you must have the ability to log into your Samsung account, wait a couple of minutes, and have every little thing arrange the identical method it was.

This virtually occurs now for a lot of Android cellphone manufacturers. Some settings are saved to your Samsung or Google account, for instance, so your new Galaxy cellphone or Pixel cellphone can do issues robotically for those who select. Apps like Samsung’s Sensible Swap make the method of transferring your knowledge simple, even when they do not cowl every little thing.

You will discover the choice while you add your account originally of the setup course of, offering that you’ve got chosen to again up issues out of your previous cellphone within the first place. For those who’re not doing this now, it is one thing you must begin — humorous sufficient, you will discover the best way to start out within the settings of your cellphone.

How you can get began together with your new Android cellphone

Samsung Smart Switch on the Galaxy S9+ and Galaxy S10e

(Picture credit score: Andrew Martonik / Android Central)

Till some firm finds a approach to again up every little thing for us, I am going to let you know one of the simplest ways I’ve discovered to get every little thing to your (or your mother’s) liking: Begin on the high.

Put aside an hour, open the settings utility, and faucet the primary entry to see what’s inside. For those who’re undecided what a change will do, it is best to skip it and be particularly cautious on the subject of your community settings. There, coverage is the previous “if it ain’t broke, do not repair it” routine.

For every little thing else, it is fairly simple to alter issues to one thing you will need, like display timeout or utilizing gestures as an alternative of buttons. You may even discover one thing you want higher than the way it was in your previous cellphone!

Lastly, bear in mind, Google has the reply. For those who come throughout one thing that you do not perceive, simply Google it. If the reply about what it’s appears to be complicated, bear in mind the unique setting so you possibly can return or simply skip it fully.

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