For more than a few versions now, Android has had what essentially amounts to a “right click” menu for apps, accessible from a touch-and-hold of the icon. But did you know you can also tear-off those commands to make even more direct shortcuts for next time?
Let’s use my personal use case for an example. For a while now, one (very) minor complaint I’ve had about the Outlook app on Android was that I couldn’t immediately jump to my calendar from my home screen. Turns out the solution has been right in front of me this whole time.
Pressing and holding on the Outlook app icon for a brief second reveals the shortcuts menu, complete with a direct link to “View Calendar” (among other useful shortcuts like immediately composing a new email without opening the app first).
But that’s not all. The thin lines on the right side of the shortcuts are actually grab handles. If I long-press on a shortcut’s handle, I can drag that shortcut anywhere on my home screen for a direct-to-the-point shortcut that lands right on my calendar in a single tap.
To find out which apps have shortcuts, you’ll have to just spend some time press-and-holding on each icon — it feels like playing the most unexciting version of whack-a-mole. But if you see a shortcut that would be handy, rip it off that menu and plop it right on your home screen.
I’ve included a few of my favorites below. Let me know if you have any other good ones, and watch this site for more tips to come.
- Direct shortcut to start my car (Chevy MyLink app)
- although it still requires both an on-screen confirmation and THEN fingerprint verification, every single time (grr)
- Direct shortcut to Outlook Calendar
- Direct shortcut to compose a new email
- Direct shortcut to compose a new tweet
- Direct shortcut to see YouTube subscriptions feed
- Direct shortcut to favorite Spotify playlists
- Direct shortcut to make a new To Do task
- Direct shortcut to OneNote’s record-audio and new notes