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How to Automatically Enable Wi-Fi When You’re Near a Trusted Network in Android Oreo

You disable Wi-Fi on your Android phone to improve battery life, which is great! But how many times have you forgotten to enable it again, ultimately eating up some of your mobile data when you could’ve been on Wi-Fi? With Oreo, that fear is no more.

Oreo brings a ton of smaller improvements to Android, and the ability to intelligently enable WI-Fi according to location is one of them. Basically, it keeps track of what networks you use often—things like your home and work networks, for example—then associates them with their physical location.

It then uses this data to make sure you’re always using Wi-Fi when you’re near those networks by automatically enabling Wi-Fi (if it’s disabled, of course) when you’re in close enough range. It’s pretty brilliant.

To enable this feature, first give the notification bar a tug, then long-press the Wi-Fi icon to jump directly into the Wi-Fi menu in Settings.

From there, tap on “Wi-Fi Preferences.”

The first option in this menu is “Turn on Wi-Fi Automatically.” This is what you’re looking for. Give that little guy a toggle and you’re good to go.

You may also have an option to “Connect to Open Networks”, which will automatically connect to “high-quality” public networks. These are generally public networks that Google is aware of and trusts (and sometimes even powers itself)—like Starbucks, for example. You can read more about this feature here, but we definitely recommend enabling it.

This is just another one of those little tweaks in Android to help you save a little of your mobile data. It’s the small touches like these that I love.

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