How to enable Android developer options on your phone

As an ordinary Android user, there are so many reasons you may want to turn on developer options. You may have thought of switching on your device’s USB debugging or maybe you want to open your bootloader so that you can root your phone.

Some users turn on Developer options only to have access to these numerous hidden options so that they can tweak around them

The list of reasons is long, but whatever you want to do, the first thing to do is enable Android Developer options on your Android phone in order to access the options in the menu settings. 

However, Android developer options by default are hidden from the rest of the settings and from your screen. This is done for a good reason, these options are meant to be used by App developers in optimizing their products and also helps them in detecting errors.

They can then use the overall findings to make some changes to your phone and these changes will then affect the overall performance of your phone.

So what am I saying in short here is, Android Developer options are meant to be used by trained professionals and not by the ordinary Android user, that’s why they are hidden from the rest of your phone settings.

Before we jump into the topic, let me first warn you not to tweak around these settings unless you really know what the options can actually do for you OR, before tweaking around any settings, note the default settings so that when anything goes wrong, you can put the settings back to their default position


How do you enable developer option?

To enable developer options, first find builder number on your device, then tap it consecutively 7 times for it to appear in the menu settings of your device.

The builder number can be easily found when you click about phone>then scroll right at the bottom of the settings, however, this may differ with phone and version.

Lets look how you can locate builder number in some Android phone popular brands;

  • In stock Android, go to your phone settings>About phone>Builder number
  • HTC>settings>About phone>Software Info>Builder number
  • Galaxy phones>Settings>About Device>Builder number     
Tap on About device to access Builder number
Builder number

Once you find the builder number, tap it 7 times (continuous). After two taps, you should see the counting down on your screen that says, “you are X steps from becoming a developer”, continue tapping and when it’s activated, you should see a notification writtenYou are now a developer“.

Developer options

That’s it for activating Developer options, it’s now activated. To find the developer option entry menu, go back to menu settings and you should access it.

How to disable developer options

If at any moment you decide that you no longer want the developer options to continue displayed on your menu settings, there are ways you can employ to do so.

The sure way you can employ to get rid of developer options from settings is by performing a factory reset on your device. Unfortunately, this is not good for your phone because it wipes all your data unless you backup before factory reset.

Worried? wait a minute, there are still some Android phones which can get rid of the developer options without going the factory reset way. But which model of phones can do that?

  All stock Android phones and HTCs can remove developer options settings from your menu without factory reset your device. However, there are a few exceptional like the Samsung Galaxy S5 and the LG3 which cannot do this.

So if you are a Galaxy  S5 or LG3 users, it’s unfortunate that you only have two options; to wipe out your data OR to keep the options on your menu setting.

To remove developer options;

Go to settings>Apps/application manager>settings>and click on clear data

Note: After clicking apps or manager, swipe the page to your right until you locate “All” apps. Now scroll down and locate “settings”.   

Apps/Application Manager

Tap on settings and click on clear data.

You should see a pop up notification that requires your confirmtion to clear data

Tap on “Ok”, That’s it, you have removed developer options from your device settings

Enabling Android developer options opens tones of hidden options and gives you full control of your device.

Though the developer options are meant to be used by professionals/developers, it doesn’t mean that the average user cannot take advantage of them in accessing other cool settings and features

Below, I am going to walk you through some Android developer options tips and tricks. If you would like to employ some amazing settings found in the developer options, then read the below tips.

Android developer options tips and tricks

1. Stay Awake while charging

Tick this option to keep awake your phone display when its plugged on a charger. This is important when you want to frequently keep an eye on your device’s display. You can lock the device at any time when you no longer want it to keep awake by pressing the power button.

Th access this setting follow the below steps;

  • Go to settings
  • Android developer options
  • Scroll down till you find “Stay Awake” option and switch it ON

2. Limit Background processes (To save your data and battery power)

There are some naughty apps that continue running in the background even when you exited them. Its unfortunate that such apps will continue using your data and draining your battery from the background.

This option enables you to select only those important apps you want to see keep running in the background. You can choose zero background apps, this means there will be absolutely no app that will remain running.

While this is a good way to save your data and battery, it also mean opening apps will be slower

To switch on this setting;

  • Open settings
  • Android developer options
  • Find Limit Background option and switch it on

3. Turn on 4x MSAA in OpenGL ES 2.0 apps ( For improved gaming graphics)

Turning on 4x MSAA , greatly improves quality in gaming graphics and OpenGL ES 2.0 applications. This setting uses more processing power, hence more battery power draining. If you don’t have any problem with your battery power, you can enable this option to enjoy the less sluggish and smoother gaming experience.

To enable Force MSAA 4x follow the below procedure;

  • Go to your device’s settings
  • Developer options
  • Scroll down and find the option, tap on Force MSAA 4x

4. Mock Locations (To enable fake GPS location)

Tired if being barred from accessing certain content and program (like YouTube videos, games) that are not available in your country/region?

You can download a fake GPS location app from Google Play Store. After you have finished downloading the fake GPS location app, go ahead to developer option, open Mock locations and you should see the fake GPS app you would have installed.

select the app and search for the region you want to fake your location. Enjoy any restricted content in any region by pretending as if you are living in that region.

To enable Mock location, follow the below steps;

  • Go to your device settings
  • Open Developer options
  • Find Mock Locations and tick to enable it
Mock Locations

5. Show CPU Usage

Turn the CPU Usage ON when you want to see the CPU usage of your device. Useful in seeing the process that will be running on your CPU at that particular moment.

However, this mustn’t be turned on at all times as the process can cover your screen thereby blocking your view of other important apps and activities on your device screen.

To enable Display CPU Usage, do the following;

  • Go to settings
  • Open Developer options.
  • Click on Show CPU Usage to enable it

All process running on the CPU will be displayed on the right side of the screen of your device.

CPU Usage

6. Process Stats

This is another amazing setting, It’s very much the same to battery usage menu, but in this setting, its showing RAM memory usage.

The bar at the top of the screen displays the percentage of the CPU memory currently being used by apps on your device.

On the other hand, the app listing shows the apps in order of their CPU memory usage

To access Process Stats;

  • Open Settings>> Developer Options
  • Tap on the Process Stats to view

7. Force RTL Layout

Enable this option to tweak with your phone’s display. RTL Layout (Right-to-left layout) when toggled, forces the orientation of all elements to switch from right-to-left layout.

This is works well with certain language like Arabic, Urdu, or Yadish.However, your language is not affected, so you will be able to read the text in your preference language.

It is also helpful when you are left handed .

Force RTL Layout

8. Set Animation Speed

Have you ever noticed that when swiping between pages or apps, there is an animation transition between the pages? Using this setting, you can increase, lower or remove Transition animation scale, Window animation scale and Animator duration scale, on your device.

To set the animation speed, do the following procedure’

  • Go to settings>developer options
  • scroll down to find Transition animation scale, Animator duration scale or window animation scale
  • Adjust the scale according to what you want

A lower number means high speed animation and vice versa for lower speed.

Set animation scale

9. Aggressive data handover

This setting does not improve your internet speed in any way but it improves the speed at which your device adopt to mobile data in the event that your WiFi connection has dropped.

So enabling this option will mean that when your WiFi connection drops, your device will quickly switch on to mobile data.

Don’t turn on aggressive data handover if you don’t have enough mobile data as this will mean your device will be quicker in accessing your mobile data.

Aggressive Wi-Fi /cell handover

. Conclusion

Developer options has many useful settings that can be taken advantage of by the average user. However, one need to make sure he/she know the effects that may come as a result of the change before tweaking on the settings.

Did you find this article useful? If you have any question, feel free to ask and I will be more than happy to help you out.

If you find this article helpful, do me a favor by sharing it with your friends using the share button on the top left of this page.

He likes to play with the latest phones, gaming consoles, PCs, laptops and when he gets some spare time he likes to do VFX stuff. You can always find him playing with tools like Photoshop, Lightroom, Premiere Pro, After Effects, etc. His current gear is Galaxy Note 9+. He is a well-established website developer and entrepreneur.

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