Hands on with Samsung’s big Good Lock 2020 update (Update: Navstar is back)

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Samsung launched Good Lock when the Galaxy S7 was the latest and greatest, and has since become a key element of Samsung’s experience. Initially allowing users to try out new features from future Android updates, Good Lock soon evolved into a tool to customize and customize your Galaxy smartphone exactly as you like. Until now, Good Lock was not compatible with Android 10, which was fixed by Good Lock 2020. This update does much more than restore existing features, adding many new options to choose from. This great variety may seem scary at first, so let’s talk about all that Good Lock has to offer and how to make the most of it.

The Good Lock app itself had some improvements before you got to any of the sections. A new boot screen, custom One-UI 2.0-compatible design features, and dark mode support to stop the app from blinding you at night. All the small changes, but together they definitely improve the experience.

Theme park

Left: Main screen, Medium: Screen Editor of Theme Park, Correctly: the new color selection tool

My favorite additions are to Theme Park, a section that creates custom themes based on colors in a selected wallpaper. It was originally released in December and for Android 9 and 10, it was very successful – there was no dark mode support and you limited yourself to the colors that came out of the wallpaper. With this update, both of these issues are resolved. In addition to offering suggested colors, the option to make your own in a color mixer is finally possible.

Additionally, dark mode support fixes my main problem with the previous version: In addition to the dark background of your quick settings and applications, you can set a different accent color than the one used in the lighting mode. What is still missing is the ability to edit themes that you have already created. Once created, it is saved in the theme application and that is it. You can apply it or delete it, but without editing. If you find something that is missing after saving it, you will need to start from scratch to fix it. Hopefully this is something Samsung may face later.

One-handed operation +

Left and middle: New settings pages, Correctly: New topic in action

The One Hand + function, not to be confused with the one-handed function of Samsung, has received a big makeover, although much of the functionality remains the same. For those unfamiliar, One Hand Operation + adds “handles” to the sides of the screen. These handles are similar to the gestures found in Android 10, with additional functionality. You can set custom actions to slide up, sideways, or down from the edge of the screen. Additional actions can be assigned in large or small movements, making one-handed operation + one of the most customizable units available. Glad to use it again, as I found it to be the best way to navigate a phone as big as the S10 +.

I use Samsung’s gesture system, with “gesture tips” turned off in the settings menu. This way, I can ignore the gesture system at the bottom of the screen and use this Good Lock unit exclusively. Rotating diagonally upwards on both sides opens my recent applications, scrolls directly to the left or right, and returns diagonally to the home screen. If I wanted to, I could add a big move to Google Assistant, reduce the notification shadow, or even launch a selected application.

In the previous version, activating a gesture would show a small arrow inside a circle that followed your finger. In Good Lock 2020, there are three themes available, with the default curved line, which looks almost identical to the animations found on Huawei devices or applications such as Fluid navigation. This theme allows you to change the fill, arrow and outline colors to suit your taste perfectly. If you do not like it, “arrow 1” restores the previous user interface where the arrow appears in a small circle and the new “arrow 2” theme mimics the gesture style of Android 10.

Job conversion

Left: Task Changer menu, Medium: List of topics, Correctly: New theme in use

Task Changer modifies the overview screen, incorporating many different themes. Unsurprisingly, it took Samsung so long to restore this unit, as Google made significant changes to this aspect of Android. All of the previously found themes in Task Changer are here, with a new theme called Vertical Stack, which is a variation of the existing Stack theme, displaying applications as large overlapping cards, such as the iPhone. The Vertical Stack takes the same design language and flips it from horizontal to vertical, as the name implies. Otherwise, everything else works the same as before, offering “mini-mode” options for a better one-handed experience, blurring the background and centering on the currently used application instead of the previous one. I highly recommend activating it, as the animations feel more natural.


MultiStar settings menu

MultiStar modifies the multitasking experience, from activating multiple windows for all applications, to selecting the color of the screen separator. In recent years, many users and I have lost the ability to hold down the recents key to quickly activate multiple windows. Fortunately, Samsung was able to restore this functionality, and after a few. By default, holding down the recents key will activate the traditional split screen that most people are used to. Immerse yourself in the settings, and you can re-release the long press to activate the pop-up view: small free-form windows that can be resized and minimized as needed.

Enabling the multi-window zoom feature changes the DPI of applications that open on a split screen. In other words, the phone shrinks to fit as much of the app content as possible into the small window without sacrificing readability. It’s a subtle but welcome addition to the list of features. Another new feature called The Long Live App lets you let some applications be killed by memory management or the Clear All button. I turned it on immediately for YouTube Music, which means I can’t accidentally stop my music when I close all my open apps. I recommend Spotify users to do the same.


According to the changelog provided by Samsung, the LockStar is supposed to benefit from many changes under the hood, as well as new features such as a customizable standby timer for the lock screen and some notification improvements. By all accounts, this should have been released with the other new and improved modules, but for now, I’m stuck with the older version that doesn’t work in One UI 2.0. Once I install the new version of LockStar, I will make sure to update this post in detail.

South Star

Left: NotiStar alert list, Correctly: Lock screen holder designer

NotiStar is a section I have always closed in the past, but now that I have played more with it, I hope to try it sooner. Our phones bombard us with notifications and sometimes pressing this delete button at all is the easiest option. But what about the important alerts you missed? NotiStar saves notifications from selected applications in its own list, even after you remove them from the notification shadow. When I quit my job and reactivate my data, my phone does not stop ringing as it tries to make up for the difference. Rejecting all and opening NotiStar to view the most important messages is extremely useful. Additionally, with LockStar 2020, you can add a shortcut to NotiStar on the lock screen, with custom position, color, and opacity.


Left: Status bar display menu, Correctly: Clock position

QuickStar is back, allowing you to change the position of the status bar clock or remove it altogether, as well as hide selected status bar icons. I have lost this feature, as I always have Bluetooth turned on and connect to the Galaxy Watch Active 2 (what a bite) and I do not like clutter in the status bar, so hiding the Bluetooth icon is a welcome option. This module is essentially the old system UI receiver that Google killed a few years ago.


Navstar is back although there does not seem to be anything new. Therefore, if you use three-button navigation, there are a number of options you can use. In addition to changing themes, Navstar lets you add additional buttons that perform a variety of functions, such as lowering the notification shadow by taking a screenshot or opening an app of your choice.

Hopefully Samsung will add new features and gesture options over time, but for now it’s nice to bring back the old functionality.

Sound Assistant

Finally, Sound Assistant has some promising new features that will not be available until the end of February, according to the same changelog provided by Samsung. Most of the changes will be in the background, improving performance and existing functionality. The only feature the user will see is the option to move the volume interface in a vertical line next to the volume buttons, like Android. For those of us who prefer the Google app, this would be a welcome change.

In recent years, those of us who wanted to modify our devices had to use root or install custom ROMs that would often make the experience unstable. Good Lock is just as flexible, with the added benefit of being integrated into the system by Samsung. Good Lock 2020 is now available from the Galaxy Store and the APK Mirror and I hope that this dive into the possibilities of the application will help you navigate the plethora of options available to you.

Navstar has received its update for 2020 and hands-on has been included.

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