Android phones and tablets provide many ways to protect against unauthorized use of the device and block the device: a text password, a graphic key, a PIN code, a fingerprint, and in Android 5, 6 and 7, there are also additional options, such as voice unlock, identification of a person or location in a particular place.
In this manual - step by step on how to set a password on an Android smartphone or tablet, as well as configure the device screen unlock by additional methods using Smart Lock (not supported on all devices). See also: How to set a password for Android applications
Note: all screenshots were taken on Android 6.0 without additional shells, on Android 5 and 7 everything is exactly the same. But, on some devices with a modified interface, menu items may be called a little differently or even be located in additional settings sections - in any case, they are there and are easily detected.
Setting a text password, pattern, and PIN
The standard way to set an Android password, which is present in all current versions of the system, is to use the corresponding item in the settings and select one of the available unlock methods - a text password (an ordinary password that needs to be entered), a PIN code (code of at least 4 digits) or a graphic key (a unique pattern that you need to enter by swiping your finger along the control points).
Use one of the following simple steps to set up an authentication option.
- Go to Settings (in the application list, or from the notification area, click on the "gear" icon) and open the "Security" (or "Lock screen and security" on the latest Samsung devices).
- Open the “Screen lock” (“Screen lock type” - on Samsung).
- If any type of lock has already been set, then when you enter the settings section you will be asked to enter the previous key or password.
- Choose one of the types of code to unlock Android. In this example, “Password” (a simple text password, but all other items are configured in approximately the same way).
- Enter the password, which must contain at least 4 characters and click "Continue" (if you are creating a graphic key, swipe your finger, connecting several arbitrary points, so that a unique pattern is created).
- Confirm the password (enter the exact same one again) and click “OK”.
Note: on Android phones equipped with a fingerprint scanner there is an additional option - Fingerprint (located in the same settings section as the other blocking options or, in the case of Nexus and Google Pixel devices, it is configured in the "Security" - "Google Imprint" section or "Pixel Imprint."
This completes the setup and if you turn off the device’s screen and then turn it on again, then when unlocking you will be asked to enter the password that you set. It will also be requested when accessing the Android security settings.
Advanced security and Android lock options
Additionally, on the “Security” settings tab, you can configure the following options (we are talking only about those that are related to blocking with a password, PIN code or pattern):
- Auto-lock - the time after which the phone will be automatically locked with a password after turning off the screen (in turn, you can set the screen to turn off automatically in Settings - Screen - Sleep mode).
- Lock with the power button - whether to lock the device immediately after pressing the power button (put to sleep) or wait for the period of time specified in the "Auto-lock" item.
- Text on the locked screen - allows you to display text on the lock screen (located under the date and time). For example, you can put a request to return the phone to the owner and indicate the phone number (not the one on which the text is installed).
- An additional item that may be present on Android versions 5, 6, and 7 is Smart Lock, which is worth talking about separately.
Smart Lock Features on Android
New versions of Android provide additional unlocking options for owners (you can find the settings in Settings - Security - Smart Lock).
- Physical contact - the phone or tablet is not blocked while you are in contact with it (information from sensors is read). For example, you looked at something on the phone, turned off the screen, put it in your pocket - it does not block (since you are moving). If put on the table - it will be locked in accordance with the parameters of auto-lock. Minus: if the device is pulled out of the pocket, it will not be blocked (as the information from the sensors continues to flow).
- Safe places - indicate places in which the device will not block (requires the included location).
- Trusted devices - set devices that, when within range of Bluetooth, the phone or tablet will be unlocked (requires the included Bluetooth module on Android and on a reliable device).
- Face recognition - automatically unlock if the owner is looking at the device (requires a front camera). For successful unlocks, I recommend that you train the device several times on your face, holding it the way you usually do (bending your head down towards the screen).
- Voice recognition - unlock the phrase “Ok Google.” To configure the option, you will need to repeat this phrase three times (when setting up, you need Internet access and the “Recognize Ok Google on any screen” option enabled), after completing the settings for unlocking, you can turn on the screen and say the same phrase (Internet is not required when unlocking).
Perhaps this is all about protecting Android devices with a password. If questions remain or something does not work as it should, I will try to answer your comments.