How to use the Galaxy Note 5 s One-handed operation modes, Android Central

How to use the Galaxy Note 5's 'One-handed operation' modes

By Andrew Martonik Friday, Sep 25, 2015 at 6:39 pm EDT

Having trouble managing that screen? Shrink it down on-demand when you need it.

The Galaxy Note 5 is slimmer and easier to use with one hand than any previous Note, but 5.7-inches of screen is still a lot to manage. Samsung has two tricks up its sleeve to help you reach everything on your Note 5’s screen, and they’re even easier to use than previous iterations of the software tweak. They fall under the “One-handed operation” heading, and we’re going to show you how to use them.

In the settings of your Note 5, under “Display,” you’ll find “One-handed operation.” There are two distinct settings here, and one is quite a bit more useful than the other.

Reduce screen size

The first is “Reduce screen size,” which lets you shrink down the phone’s screen into a smaller window at any time. Once it’s enabled, just press the home button three times and the screen will shrink down proportionately to about half its original size. It also gets pulled over to either the left or right side, which you can choose by tapping a small arrow next to the window. You can now interact with the small portion of the display just as if it were filling the screen — everything’s just easier to reach now. There’s an on-screen button for returning the screen to it’s original size, but you can also back out by simply pressing the home button three times once again.

One-handed input

The other option in the settings is “One-handed input,” which is slightly less useful. Unlike “Reduce screen size,” this switch actually puts the feature in full effect all the time. When you turn it on, the phone dialer pad, stock keyboard, calculator and lock screen pattern will all shift over to the side of the screen and shrink down, much like the full screen does in the previous mode, but this setting is all-or-nothing. You don’t toggle the shrinking, it’s just on all the time — and that can be quite annoying considering when you do have two hands available to use the phone you won’t want to hunt back into the settings and toggle this back.

Whether you choose to use one or both is up to you, but if you give ’em a try there’s a good chance you’ll find one to be useful for those times when you just have to get something done on your Note 5 and really only have one hand free to manipulate the phone.

Samsung Galaxy Note 5

Reader comments

How to use the Galaxy Note 5’s ‘One-handed operation’ modes

I wish the s6e plus had this feature!

Posted via the Android Central App

It doesn’t? Wow that makes no sense.

I use this a lot on my Note 5. Its surprisingly useful in a lot of one handed situations.

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It does but you wouldn’t know that from the article or its title. Just like all these other note 5 tips and tricks articles that don’t mention the s6e plus. For some reason ac keeps on leaving the s6e plus out of them.

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Wubba lubba dub dub!

Lol oh. Those one handed situations lol.

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Why did they take out the baked in pie controls that the Note 4 had? That was the only one handed operation feature that I used.

Well not really a pie control but it was similar.

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The one hand operating is there alive an well in the gs6 edge plus

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Of course it is. Just like the camera tips and tricks for the note 5 and battery tips and tricks for the note 5. But for some reason we only hear about them on the note 5.

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“Reduce screen size” does not work with *words with friends*. That’s the only time I need to use it so that really sucks.

Posted via Note 5/AC App.

Yeah i noticed this also. On Trivia Crack, the button placements are off also last time I checked. IDK if it was ever fixed, but I haven’t tried to put either game in the “Reduced Screen Size” feature.

I never use my Note 4 one-handed, even though it has multiple features for that. The most I do is use my left thumb to scroll.

I”m not into the Zen thing. You know, the sound of one hand tapping.

One of my friends just got a Note 5 yesterday. He’s loving it. I told him about Android Central.

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This would be a great feature for all phablets.

Via the Moto X Classic

You think it’s patented? If so, it would explain why it’s only on Samsung devices.

Lg has something similar as well on the G3 and g4

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How do you use it on LG?

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I love the triple click feature. use it often after finding it a few days ago.

The iPhone 6+’s don’t do this then?

iOS’s version of screen shrink is not the same. All it does is move the icons at the top, down to the bottom.

On the previous notes, one handed mode display could be resized. Now, it cannot. This is truly disappointing. The mode on the Note 5 is too small. I don’t like it at all.

I may have accidentally clicked the Report icon on this comment by queenren that I’m replying to. If it was me, it was entirely unintentional. As with a vote up/down, I couldn’t find a way to undo it, which would be a welcome option to correct such accidents.

queenren does make a good point that we lost other functionality that was previously in the “reduce screen size” feature. In my comment below I point out the omission of the onscreen soft keys so you don’t still have to reach your hardware keys, which in my opinion undermines the effectiveness of the feature in a big way. But we’ve also lost the ability to freely resize (and reposition) the smaller screen, which is clearly important to queenren. I do find the triple click of the home button on the Note 5 to be much preferable to the quick movement on the side of the screen to activate the feature on the Note 4, which was sometimes problematic. It seems that Samsung may have been trying to simplify the feature, which can be a good thing, but they dropped some of the strength of the feature that I’ll hope they’ll put back in.

The “reduce screen size” feature really does work nicely, and it’s a bit easier to activate than it was on my Note 4. I use it and love it, with one exception that kind of boggles my mind: They removed the home buttons that were part of the previous incarnation on the Note 4. On the note for, there were soft (on-screen) buttons at the bottom for Home, Recent Apps, and Back that fit at the bottom of the smaller screen image, and it worked great! On the Note 5, you have to reach your thumb all the way across the phone to reach the hardware Recent Apps button or Back button, depending on how you’re holding it. And that’s a difficult reach. I don’t know why they made that change, which made the function less helpful, but I would love to see a software update to add soft (on-screen) versions of the hardware buttons back into the reduced screen size feature.

The EDIT link wouldn’t work to let me edit to correct my typos, and now the EDIT option is gone. Is there a trick to it I don’t know? Really, I should proof *before* submitting it and not after!

In my comment above, “On the note for” should have been “On the Note 4”.

Can you do a review on how to change the S-Voice Voice on the Note 5? Although I downloaded the new Male UK voice and changed it in the settings, S-Voice still uses that stupid default voice.

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Having no soft keys was probably one of the biggest disappointments for me. No other phablet does one-handed use so intuitively and it’s one of my favorite things to show off to my friends with other brands of phablets. I really think Samsung dropped the ball on this one. The least they could’ve done was include the soft keys as a downloadable feature.

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