Phone Customization

As you can see from the other posts in this section, I love customizing everything. And being a techie, my smartphone is no exception. Part of the reason I like the Android OS is the freedom and ability to tweak and change everything. Even when I used to have a blackberry, I had it customized with themes.  Its pretty crazy how creative people have gotten with their cell phone customization. If you’re going to be using something a lot, you might as well set it up in a way that looks appealing to you, right? There are forums and website full of people showing their different wallpapers, icons, and widgets combining to form some very unique setups. I myself have gone through a few different setups over the past couple of years, and I thought I’d share them here. I won’t be explaining how I made my homescreens look like this here,  but if anyone is interested in “pimping” their android phone, feel free to leave a comment below and I’ll guide you through it!


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Car Dock

After the cheap suction cup mounted phone stand in my car broke, I started looking at alternative ways to hold up my phone while driving,so I could use it for navigation and other purposes. I often prefer to build something myself rather than buying it, because I can customize it to my liking and have a unique and functional product. I recently bought a wireless qi charger for my phone, and I thought it would be most convenient for using in the car – instead of looking for the usb cable and plugging it in, I could just put my phone over the charger and it would start charging, wirelessly. I needed some way to keep the phone against the charger, and I wanted a holder for navigation, so I decided to combine the two together and make a charger/holder. For this I rummaged through my  box of random parts and supplies until I found a piece of metal that I had taken out of some old electronics. I rounded the corners, removing all sharp edges, and bent it to form an arm, which I attached around the charger. I also lined the inside of the arm with some pieces of felt so it wouldn’t scratch the phone while holding it. Because the metal is bendable, I could adjust the arm to hold a wider or thinner phone. I didn’t want to do any permanent damage to my car so I used some adhesive velcro to attach the holder to the dash in front of the steering wheel. It held up great for a few days but eventually fell of from heat and weight. So I cut and painted a popsicle stick and attached it as a leg of sorts, to hold up the weight of the charger and phone. Now I just keep my car charger cable into the wireless charger, and my phone automatically starts charging as soon as I slide it into the holder. I also added an NFC chip ( just like on my other dock) which lets the phone detect it is in the holder and change settings automatically. Even when I don’t use the NFC or wireless charging, I do use the holder while driving every day.

Pictures of the process:

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