As of Android 10, we have the option of selecting from a variety of different ways to access your multitasking pane — that handy flow of thumbnails that allows us to view all of our active apps, choose which one you want to use, and wipe off any that you wish to close — as well as navigate through your home screen. Until then, most of our Android screen navigation was accomplished via the use of buttons at the bottom of the screen. Since then, we’ve been able to choose between utilizing swipes to navigate and continuing to use the traditional navigation buttons. Android 10 or 11 users may select between three navigation methods: gestures, two buttons, or three buttons (if they have three buttons available). When Android 12 was released, two-button navigation was no longer available, although you could still choose between gesture and three-button navigation. See the following instructions for customizing how you move around your home screen and access your multitasking window.
- Pull down from the top of the screen to reveal your app drawer, and then press on the symbol for your configuration (the cog in the lower right corner)
- If you have Android 11, go to “Accessibility” > “System navigation” and pick “System navigation.”
- If you have Android 10 or 12, go to “System” > “Gestures” > “System navigation” and pick “System navigation.”
- When using Android 10 or 11, choose either “Gesture navigation,” “2-button navigation,” or “3-button navigation” from the drop-down menu. When using Android 12, select “Gesture navigation” or “3-button navigation” from the menu.
This section describes the differences between the three approaches in more detail.
1. Gesture Navigation
This is the “swipe” approach introduced in Android 10 and the one that Google seems to be the most concerned about users using. As a result, there are no longer any traditional back, home, and switch applications buttons at the bottom of the display when using gesture navigation. Instead, all you’ll see at the bottom of the screen is a single horizontal line rather than a gradient. So instead, swipe up and hold to bring up the multitasking window, displaying all of your currently open applications. After that, you may access them by swiping them from side to side. The multitasking panel appears when you first view an app page. When you do so, you’ll see a drop-down menu that will allow you to see the program’s information page and start the app in a split-screen configuration. Depending on the app, you may also be able to access other functions; for example, if you’re watching a video, you may be able to stop it from this location. Screenshot and Select are two new buttons that have been introduced to the bottom of the multitasking window in Android transfer. By selecting Snapshot, you’ll be able to capture a screenshot of whichever app page you’re presently viewing. Likewise, selecting text on an app page will choose all of the text on that page, allowing you to copy, distribute, or search through it.
2. Button Navigation
As long as your phone is running Android 10, you’ll have a short, thick line representing the Home button at the bottom of your screen, along with a back button to the left. Use the home button to swipe up to get the same multitasking pane with the drop-down choices that can be seen at the top of each app. The “Screenshot” and “Select” buttons formerly available underneath the panes are no longer available in Android 11. Instead, you’ll see a Google search area at the bottom of the screen, along with icons for five different applications, much as in Android 10.
According to the previous statement, Android 12 does not support two-button navigation. There are three buttons at the bottom of the screen that allows you to move back, forward, and switch between apps. To bring up the multitasking pane, click on the “switch applications” icon on the right-hand side of the screen. Android 11 and 12 continue to provide the drop-down menus accessible above each app and the Screenshot and Select links located below each application.
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