5TIP: Your phone has features you're not using (x5)

Your phone can do things you didn't know it was capable of. With the VAST number of features and potential of the computers we all carry with us every day, I can be SURE there are features of which most readers do not take advantage. The following is one of a series of lists of features your phone has that you're not likely rolling with right this minute.

1. Activate Hidden Options (Android)

Go to Settings – System – About Phone – Model Number/Build Number. Tap Build Number or Model Number 7 times. A new menu item will appear in your main Settings list. This new menu item is called "Developer Options". Tap in and you'll find a new collection of controls the likes of which you've never had access to before.

NOTE: Be careful with these controls, as you could accidentally enable access to your phone for malicious parties. That'd be bad news. If you open Developer Options and find yourself wary, you're probably responsible enough to fiddle with the options therein. Just be cautious!

2. Gyro Sensor

Your phone has a whole bunch of hardware inside that isn't used by the average consumer. Probably the simplest example of this is the gyro sensor – the sensor that's apparent most often when a user switches between portrait and landscape modes in a camera app. This sensor allows your phone to know which way its oriented VS gravity.

In your smartphone's app store, search for "Bubble Level" or "spirit level" and download the app with the best review rating. This app will work the same as a physical level.

3. Airplane Mode

Assuming you're an average smartphone user, you rarely turn off your device's mobile data. You probably keep your data turned on at all times, lest you miss the latest message and/or update notification from your favorite social network. Assuming it's not a life and death sort of situation, turning your mobile data OFF can have some truly positive effects on your baseline stress level, attention span, and ability to live in the moment.

You can find "Airplane Mode" in your quick options. Swipe up or down on your phone's home screen (depending on if you've got an iPhone or Android) and find the Airplane logo button. Tap it, and be free.

4. Audio Recording

Most smartphone owners know they're able to record video and/or photo media. Used a lot less is a phone's ability to record sound alone. If you've got an iPhone, you can record audio with the app called Voice Memos – included with your phone. A number of audio recording apps are available in the App Store, too, if you're unhappy with the standard Voice Memos app.

If you're on Android, you've got a few options. At the time this article is set to go live, I'd recommend the app Audio Recorder, developed by Sony Mobile Communications. This app is simple and works on every Android device I've got on my review bench.

5. Google Translate

The most recent version of the app Google Translate is astoundingly full-featured, powerful, and capable. It has massive amounts of potential for every single person who uses it – and that includes you. Google Translate is an entirely free app – and not free like it has any sort of hidden possible costs – there's NO WAY you'll be able to spend any money on this app, whatsoever.

Also, Google Translate now works without the internet, with your phone's processor alone. That's awesome.

Google Translate can translate text, photos, and audio on the fly. It's easily the most under-appreciated apps in the universe – even though it's always been one of the top apps on "Reference" lists since inception. Download Google Translate on the App Store for iPhone and iPad as well as on the Google Play store for Android right this minute.