Have you always had a certain anxiety when handing over your Android smartphone to others? Do you want a “Guest Mode” feature on your phone, similar to the one that is available in computers? Well, it seems that your wish has finally been granted! Now you no longer need to worry about others snooping through your personal files or changing the preferences / configurations. All you need to do is upgrade to Android Lollipop (5.0 and higher) and you would be able to access the “guest user” feature.
If you have not noticed already, Android 5.0 ships with a system level guest mode which allows you to create a separate profile for guests where none of your data is made visible and with this profile, it would be impossible to make any changes to the preferences or apps that you might have set up. The interesting bit about this feature is that as soon as the user goes back to his / her Google profile, all the data in the saved data in guest profile is removed. So you can be assured that every time a person accesses your phone through the guest profile, he / she would be provided a fresh interface every time.
How to Enable Guest Mode on Android 5.0 Lollipop
1. Pull down the notification tray by swiping down from the top of the screen
2. Tap your avatar twice. (The avatar can be found at the top right corner of the screen.)
3. After tapping on the avatar, you would come across three profiles, namely your own Google account, an “Add Guest” icon and an “Add User” icon.
4. Tap on “Add Guest” icon.
5. As soon as you tap on the “Add Guest” icon, the phone’s profile will change. This could take some time, especially in the initial stages, but it will definitely be worth it. Smartphones with stock android were able to get this process completed faster than others.
6. When the user has finished using the phone in the guest mode, you can go back to your google account by following all of these steps again with the only difference being that you would have to tap on your Google account instead of other options. By going back to your Google account, you would be able to remove all the saved data that might have been stored during the guest’s session.
Non Android 5.0 Alternatives for Getting “Guest Mode“
So what if you do not have the latest Android Lollipop 5.0, you can still get the Guest Mode feature only if you look at the right places. For example, smartphone brands like Xiaomi, LG, Samsung and Huawei offer preloaded apps that allow “guest mode” like features for the respective devices. Others might name it as a completely different app, but the functions would remain the same.
It is possible that this app could be named as “Kid’s Mode” or “Guest Access”. Smartphone brands like LG have guest mode features embedded at a system level where it no longer functions as a separate app, rather it becomes part of the system and you can access it just like you would access any other system function.
If you are not able to find the guest mode features through any of these means, then the best option is to lock down certain apps by activating an unlocking mechanism for them. The unlocking process could involve a pin (alphanumeric) or a pattern (made with the use of the 9 dots represented in a square formation).
I hope this information was of some use to you. Being an android user, you might have figured out most of these things by yourself, but for those who were still in the dark, this should help you to secure your phone further. Do share your views and queries in the comments section, and we will try to come up with the best solution for it.
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