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Three Great N900 Tweaking Tools: Shortcutd, Tweakr, and Phone Speakers Switcher

July 14, 2010
Shortcutd, Tweakr, and Phone Speakers Switcher.

Shortcutd, Tweakr, and Phone Speakers Switcher.

There’s quite a few tweaking programs for the N900. But these three all bring something new to the table when it comes to managing calls and button presets.

Shortcutd

Shortcutd allows you to map your camera button to several predefined actions, OR a custom shell command. There’s options for both long and short presses, and I have both of mine mapped to “Launch Phone”. This lets me quickly open up the Phone app faster than sitting there waiting for the accelerometer to rotate the screen (I turned this feature off because it was so laggy). I love it.

You can also use your proximity sensor as a “button” (essentially by covering it for either a short or long amount of time), but I’ve had some negative experiences with it so I try to avoid the sensor as much as possible.

Tweakr

Tweakr is a collection of random options smushed together. The crown jewel is the “Snap icons to grid” setting, letting you lock desktop icons into place. Nokia, for some odd reason, did not include a sort or snap to grid option, and without Tweakr we’re simply left with icons that are sprinkled all over the place.

Another key setting that Tweakr lets you muck around with is the Power key. Normally, hitting it once brings up the phone menu, and holding it down turns the phone off. With Tweakr, you can disable/enable any or all power key functionality, or switch it up slightly. I’m not quite sure if double-tapping the Power key normally locks the phone, but you can either enable that or opt to show the menu instead.

Finally, there’s an option to mess around with the phone profiles. Tweakr lets you copy the General profile, but it looks like it just renames it instead. So I guess consider that a feature.

Phone Speakers Switcher

Phone Speakers Switcher is an interesting little tool that gives you several ways to activate the N900 loudspeaker during a call. I’ve been testing out using the proximity sensor to automatically turn on the loudspeaker when the phone is away from my face, and it’s been working fairly well. It’s a little weird to get used to though. And I swear sometimes my proximity sensor is a bit finicky. If the sensor’s not your thing, you can always use the Camera key, or slide open the keyboard to activate the speaker.

Other options include using the Camera button to end the call (probably not the best idea in my book) and opening the dashboard when the speakers are activated.

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