(Pocket-lint) – The Poco F3 is without doubt one of the best value for money phones on the market. It’s a stunning device for its price range, and if you’ve bought one having never used a Poco or Xiaomi phone before, there are plenty of bits in the software that are worth sinking your teeth into.
If you’re new to MIUI and want to discover some of the hidden gems within Poco’s version of the Android launcher, watch our video below or read on to find some great features.
1. Gesture navigation
To get your navigation gestures in place instead of using the age old android navigation buttons go to Settings > Additional Settings > Full Screen Display.
Now you’ll see two navigation options. Choose “Full screen gestures”. Now when you swipe up from the bottom of the screen it takes you to the home screen, or if you swipe in from the edge you go back a step. Swipe up and hold to go to the recent apps view.
2. Clear dust from your speaker
There’s an interesting feature in Poco’s software that plays a sound through your speakers to help clear dust out. First make sure your volume is turned up then go to Settings > Additional settings > Clear speaker. Now it’ll play a sound increasing in pitch multiple times with the aim to help shift light dust.
3. Swipe three fingers for a screenshot
This one’s particularly convenient if you find using the button combination too fiddly for taking a screenshot. Just swipe down with three fingers on the screen to snap a screenshot. If it’s not working, go to Settings > Additional settings > Gesture shortcuts and tap the “Take a screenshot” option. Now just make sure the “Swipe with three fingers down” option is switched on.
4. Back tap
Okay, so if you want something even more convenient, you can double tap the back of the phone to screenshot. In fact, you can use a double or triple back tap to launch a number of different features. For instance, you could have double tap bring down the notification shade and set a triple tap to turn on the torch, or even use one of those to launch control centre.
To do it, just stay in that Gesture Shortcuts menu from the previous tip and select “Back tap”. Now choose either double or triple tap and select the function you want to enable. Simple.
5. Quickly get to home screen/wallpaper settings
Like most Android phones, when you press and hold your wallpaper you’ll see a few home screen options appear at the bottom of the screen, allowing you to change wallpaper or change home screen settings or add widgets. However, you can get to those even quicker if you want to. Simply add a shortcut to your home screen by long-pressing the wallpaper, choosing “Widgets” and then selecting the “Home Screen” and/or “Wallpaper” shortcuts in the Poco Launcher selection.
Now when you press either of those two shortcuts on screen you can quickly get to the wallpaper picker or home screen settings.
6. Double tap to lock the phone
Another feature you’ll find in a number of modern Android phones is double tapping to lock the phone. Just go to your home screen settings by long pressing on the wallpaper and selecting “Settings” and tapping “more”. Or hit that shortcut you made in the previous tip.
Now toggle on the “Double tap to lock screen” option and now whenever you double tap on the home screen it will lock your phone.
7. Group your apps by colour
So here’s a cool idea. You can sort apps by colour automatically in the app drawer, just go to your home screen settings and choose “App Drawer”. Now toggle on the “Group apps by colour” option.
Now when you open the app drawer you’ll see a series of coloured dots along the bottom. Tap one, and it’ll show you all the apps that have that colour in the icon. So if you’re looking for Spotify or WhatsApp you can tap the green icon and it’ll show you all the green apps.
8. Adjust icon grid and size.
This is a quick and easy one, but helps achieve the look you want for your home screen. But, you can easily adjust the size and layout of the app icons on your home screen. Just go to your home screen settings and tap the “customise layout” option.
Here you’ll find two sliders. One changes the number of app columns. The other adjusts the size of the app icons. Adjust to your preference.
9. Light up for notifications
Poco’s launcher has the option to display an eye-catching animation on your lock screen when you get a notification. To choose one, head to Settings > Always on display and Lock Screen and choose “Notification effect”. Now choose the animation you like. You can get simple coloured pulses, or one that looks like floating stars.
10. Raise to wake your phone
If you want, you can have your phone wake up automatically when you lift it up. Just go to the Always-on display and Lock Screen settings menu and toggle on the “Raise to Wake” feature.
11. Enable the fastest refresh rate
The Poco F3 has one of the highest refresh rate screens on the market, but it might not be enabled by default. So head to Settings > Display > Refresh Rate and select the ‘High’ option.
12. Schedule reading mode
Reading mode isn’t exclusive to Poco phones, but its useful to have. It kills blue light, helping to relax your eyes at night time. If you want to schedule it to come on at a specific time because you read before bed every night, you can. Just head to settings > Display > Reading mode. Now toggle on the schedule option. Here you can select a manual time or just choose for it to come on at sunset.
13. Quickly switch on do not disturb
One of our favourites, and a super easy one. Press one of the volume buttons and you’ll see the volume interface pop on to the screen. Beneath it is a button that looks like a moon. Tap it, and now your phone is in ‘Do not Disturb’ mode. You won’t be interrupted by notifications until you switch it off.
Writing by Cam Bunton.