Recently I had a conversation with a friend about factory resetting his device. He’s having trouble downloading the Android 4.1 update for his Samsung Galaxy S III, and one forum fix I found was to factory reset, then attempt the update. Factory reset usually cures these kinds of issues, among others, and it’s often a great way to clean up your Android device without a lot of extemporaneous efforts.
Be aware though, factory reset is not without its own set of issues, including everything disappears. That’s why you’ll want to back up your device before the reset. I usually back up my photos and text messages, and occasionally games if I’m really far into them. Other than those items, I store documents or other files on my SD card or in the cloud. Remember, if you sync to Google, then your contacts will save and restore once you reconnect your Android device.
One of the other concerns my friend had was being able to restore all of his apps after the reset. With Android, reconnecting and restoring apps is fast and easy. In fact, many of your apps will probably install once you reconnect with Google.
If they don’t install, don’t worry, with Google Play, you can quickly find every app you’ve ever installed. Here’s how:
Open Google Play on your Android device, and select the downloaded apps tray. Note, this is also one way to check for new app updates.
You’ll see a list of your installed apps.
If you have any updates to install, those apps will appear above the “Up to date” ones.
You can see all of the apps you’ve ever downloaded by simply swiping from right to left, or clicking “ALL”.
Voila! You now have a list of ever app you’ve ever downloaded or installed on your Android device.
Now, simply scroll through your list and install those purchased apps. If you want to remove an app from the list, simply click the circle with the slant, and the app disappears.
This is a fast and easy way to get apps back onto your device when you want them. Of course, you may find that visiting the Google Play store in your web browser will save even more time, since you can install the app directly to one or all of your devices from the Play store.
Either way you choose to install your applications, Google Play makes this part of factory reset a simple task.