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How to change the DPI of your Android phone screen without using app

change android phone display dpi

Improving the overall experience of our Android phone may be a difficult task depending on the type of device we use. Most of the time, the phones are not rightly set up by the manufacturers and users are left to deal with setting things up properly on their own end by making changes in the settings according to their taste. Sometimes when making these changes we found some things amiss that we would like to change or adjust, but couldn't do.

For instance, you may buy a new phone just to discover that you can't finely adjust the fonts and how text appear on the screen. Millennials like the texts and contents on their phone to be small, while the Grandpa's like their phone contents to be bold. Of course, most of these can be adjusted under settings, but that is if the phone supports it.

DPI, the acronym that stand for "Dots Per Inch", is a word you would often come across if you are into advanced image editing, printing, and banner design. I'm not going to talk about it in details. In Android, it simply depict how small or large the contents (the texts, images, icons, overlays and other elements) appear on the screen. A phone with low dpi will have contents appear big on the screen, while a phone with high dpi will have contents look small or tiny on the screen.

DPI have nothing to do with screen size and screen resolution and shouldn't be mistaken for PPI (Pixels Per Inch). Most of the settings that have to do with adjusting the texts, or how small or big the contents appear on the screen in Android tweak the DPI. If you prefer the texts, icons, images and overlays on your Android display to look small or big, you can manually adjust the DPI if you cannot do it within your phone settings.

To do this, you will need to enable developer options on your Android phone:

  • Go to settings -> About phone
  • Look for "Build number"
  • Tap the build number seven times to enable developer options

After you have enabled the developer options, follow the steps below:

1. Go to the developer options (Settings -> Developer options).

Android developer options

2. Look for "Minimum width" or "Smallest width" among the options, tap on it.

change minimum width dpi

3. You will see the default DPI set for your device. Change the DPI according to your preference.

Note: Increase the DPI to make everything on your screen to look small. Lower the DPI to make everything on your screen to look big.

Android users that have phones that run old Android version (Android 5.0 and below) may not be able to change the DPI in developer options.

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Tech In ABC is a tech-focus website for amateur tech consumers and newbies that are just getting started. We educate people how they can improve the functionality of their tech devices, and how they can secure their privacy on social media. Learn more about Tech In ABC.

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