10 tips to make the LG G6 a lean, mean Android machine

LG's latest flagship is quite a good phone, and it gets even better with the right tweaks.

lg g6 main
Ryan Whitwam

Feelin' so fly

LG knew it had some work to do in 2017 after admitting that the G5 flopped last year. LG thankfully didn’t try to shoehorn in another modular accessory system, but there are plenty of cool features nevertheless. But what are all those features? You spent a pretty penny on this phone, you might as well take full advantage of all it has to offer. Here are 10 tips to get you up and running with the G6.

lg g6 app drawer

Turn on the app drawer

LG still insists on removing the app drawer from its default home screen, which inevitably leads to an inefficient mess. Luckily, you can turn the app drawer back on with a quick trip into the settings. It’s pretty buried, though. Go to Settings > General > Apps > Menu > Configure apps. This is where the default home screen selection lives. All you need to do is change that from “Home” to “Home and app drawer.” Your icons and widgets don’t carry over, so d this before you start customizing the stock home screen.

lg g6 knock code

Set up a Knock Code

Everyone has fingerprint sensors these days, but LG has a unique security feature you should check out. Knock Code lets you create a series of taps that will unlock the phone, even if the screen is off. You’ll find it in the Lock Screen settings. You need at least six taps in the four quadrants, but they can be entered anyplace on the screen. This can be used in tandem with the fingerprint unlock as your backup method. It’s ideal for those times when the phone is laying on a table, rendering the fingerprint sensor inaccessible.

lg g6 navigation buttons

Customize navigation buttons

The LG G6 is a very tall phone thanks to the distinctive 18:9 screen ratio. That makes the notification shade rather hard to reach. So, why not put a button in the navigation bar to open and close it? That’s just one of the customizations you can make to LG’s navigation bar. These settings are accessible under Display > Home touch buttons. You can change the background color from white to black and rearrange the standard buttons. You can add a fourth button for Capture+, notifications, or Qslide floating apps. The notification shade toggle is the most popular.

lg g6 shortcut keys

Use the shortcut keys

Those volume buttons on the side of the phone aren't only for changing the volume. While the G6 is asleep, they act as shortcuts to two handy features. Simply double-press the volume down button to open the camera. A double-press of the volume up button launches LG's built-in note taking app QuickMemo. If you decide you don't want the shortcut keys active, there's a toggle in Settings > General.

lg g6 capture

Use Capture+ instead of regular screenshots

Every Android device under the sun lets you take screenshots, but LG goes one step further with Capture+. This feature is accessible from the quick settings, and it allows you to capture and edit a screenshot in a snap. Press the Capture+ button, and you get a screenshot with a toolbar at the top of the screen. You can doodle on the image, crop it, add text, and make selections. Your edited screenshots can be saved directly to the gallery or QuickMemo. Alternatively, there’s a share option in the overflow menu.

lg g6 smart settings

Automation with Smart Settings

Manually opening apps and toggling settings is lame, right? Smart Settings on the LG G6 can do it for you based on your location and device status. You’ll find Smart Settings in the General settings tab. It has four scenarios for which you can alter settings and automatically launch apps. For the home/away scenarios, you need to set a home address. Then, you can have the phone toggle WiFi, bluetooth, and change the sound profile based on where you are. The Bluetooth and headphone jack scenarios are used to launch certain apps. For example, Play Music could open when you plug in headphones, or Android Auto could open when the phone connects to your car’s Bluetooth.

lg g6 camera roll

Show camera roll in camera

The G6 has a taller than average screen, which most apps don’t take into account. Some of LG’s apps make use of the extra space, though. The camera can use the additional height to provide quick access to the camera roll. To activate this, open the camera, tap the settings gear, and turn on “Camera roll.” The edge of the screen (i.e. the top when held in portrait) will display a scrollable strip of your recent images. You can tap on any of them to get a quick preview without leaving the camera app.

lg g6 comfort view

Configure Comfort View

Research indicates that the light given off by screens can adversely affect your sleep patterns. Filtering out the blue light from a screen may help reduce this effect, though. The G6 has a built-in “Comfort View” that does just that. However, you ought to make some adjustments before using it. The default setting is kind of like the nuclear option—black and white mode. Yep, there’s no blue light there. A more reasonable setting would be the low, medium, or high filter settings. These control how warm the screen will look. You can turn on Comfort View from the main display settings or the Quick Settings.

lg g6 always on

Enable Always-on Display

Some things have carried over from the ill-fated LG G5, like Always-on Display. This is turned off by default, but it can be a useful feature if you don’t mind losing a little battery life. When the G6 is asleep, Always-on Display shows you the time, date, and notification icons. To activate it, go to Settings > Display > Always-on Display. You can choose the clock style, set a schedule to disable the feature at night, and increase the screen brightness (at the expense of battery life).

lg g6 app scaling

Tweak App scaling

The G6’s unusual screen ratio means some apps and games might look a little weird. A few apps will exhibit graphical bugs, but others just have black bars at the top and bottom of the screen. LG has included a tool to change the scaling of apps so they’ll work on the taller screen. A floating action button provides quick access to this feature in all full-screen apps. You can also find a complete list of apps by going to Settings > Display > App scaling. Just pick an app and choose between 16.7:9, 16:9, and 18:9. Forcing full screen (18:9) can get rid of the black bars, but you lose a few pixels on the left and right. You’ll have to play around and see what looks best.