Hey guys, so a couple of weeks back, I wrote a post about my idea of the best Android browsers out there. It was my first post so please be gentle, I’m still learning. You can check it out if you want to know them.
One of the browsers I talked about was UC Mini. Apparently, a few weeks later, UC Mini received a major update.
Today, I’m going to tell you how to use the new and improved browser. Sit back, relax and let’s get to it.
The New UC Mini Browser
I have no idea about the exact time the update came, but it should be around two or three weeks before this post.
UC Mini now has the same look as the UC Browser itself. At this point, the only difference I can tell between the two is just the size. I believe UC Mini was made for mid-range phones.
On the pictures above, it clearly shows that UC Mini is 43MB compared to the 120MB UC Browser (yours should be slightly different).
They practically look and do the same thing, so I don’t know if there’s a major update coming to UC browser as well. We just have to wait and see about that.
The New Look
If you’ve used the old version of UC Mini browser, you’ll definitely notice the new look.
When I first launched the app (after the update came), I was like “Man, I must have accidentally opened UC browser and not UC Mini.” I closed the app and launched it again and I thought “Okay, my phone is having issues.”
I got really confused and thought something was wrong, but when I saw “UC Mini” on the loading screen, I realized that it had gotten a new look.
And like I said, it looks just like UC Browser.
Address and Search Bar
There’s a bar at the top where you put the address of the website you wish to visit or the keywords you want to do a Google search for.
That’s not a new thing, but it is a new look. The old UC Mini browser just had a not so fancy look. It did a good job as a browser though.
The new bar has rounded borders, instead of just sharp edges and there’s no separate area for making a quick search.
The integration of both searching for a keyword (or phrase) and visiting a website on one bar can sometimes be a little annoying.
In a situation where I want to make a search about a website (I hope I’m not the only one that does this), it doesn’t work cause I just get directed straight to the website.
If I wanted to maybe Google a website say “downloadfoodonline.com” to see where people mention it and what they’re saying about it, I definitely have to go to www.google.com then input the address in the search bar.
It’s not a huge problem, and I know a lot of people won’t worry about it, but it will take a little getting used to for people who will be switching for the first time from the old UC Mini.
UC Mini Browser Speed Dials
All UC browsers come with premade speed dials (probably based on popularity or based on your location) and UC Mini is no exception.
On the old UC Mini, the speed dials were good, you start-up the app, you get a page with the speed dials which were squares and could be accumulated (having a folder full of speed dials in the space of just one speed dial).
On the updated UC Mini, on the startup screen, you get a list of nicely shaped speed dials, which are very popular and useful websites.
What’s different here is you get to navigate through all your speed dials on different pages by either swiping left or right, or just continuously tapping the “Home” button on the app.
I’ve not really been a fan of having many speed dials, because I know the addresses of sites I go to most. But if you like keeping them, you can add them.
Adding and Removing Speed Dials
Adding more websites to the speed dial is not difficult. First you have to visit the website you wish to add, tap the Menu button, select Add Bookmark and then select Speed Dial and you’re done.
To have a combination of two or more speed dials in one folder, tap and hold the icon of the speed dial and drag it on top the icon of the speed dial you want to combine it with and then release. Keep doing it this way until you have a collection of folders of speed dials in different categories.
You can have a folder for all your social media speed dials, news, sports, etc.
To rename a folder (when you create a new folder, it is usually given an “untitled” title), tap the folder to open it, tap the title on top the folder, rename it to what you want and hit the back button to save.
To remove a speed dial, tap and hold the speed dial you want to remove and an “x” symbol should pop up on the top left on all the speed dials.
Tap the “x” symbol on the ones you want to delete and when you’re done, hit “Done“.
Note: the speed dials on the first page cannot be deleted.
UC Mini News
Probably one of the reasons this update was made is because of UC News.
On the start-up screen, just below the speed dial, you get a list of recent news based on your location.
Personally, I don’t like this feature, I like my interface simple. However, if you don’t mind getting News, you’ll be glad to know you can choose the category of news you want.
How to Customize UC Mini News
To do this, while on the startup screen, just swipe through the list of news articles and look for a hamburger symbol (3 horizontal bars) on the top-right. Tap it and it should take you to a new screen.
The new screen has two sections, the “My Channels” and the “Click Following Channels to Add“.
- My Channels – this is a list of news categories that are currently on your news feed.
- Click Following Channels to Add – a list of news categories that aren’t on your news feed but can be added.
Hit the Edit button on the top-right and you can either remove news categories from the “MY Channels” list by tapping the “x” symbol on each news category.
Or add categories from the “Click Following Channels to Add” list to your current news feed by just tapping any category you’re interested in.
After you’re done, hit “Done” and it will be saved.
Note: “Headlines” and “Lifestyle” categories cannot be removed from the “My Channels” list.
How to Deactivate UC Mini News
If you don’t like this feature (I don’t either), it’s easy to deactivate it by following the steps below.
- Tap the Menu button and select “Settings” (it’s the little gear icon on the bottom left).
- Check for “UC News Settings” and tap it.
- “UC News Display” is what you’ll find, tap it and select “Off”.
- You’ll be asked to restart, hit “Restart”.
After these steps, you should have a clean startup screen.
The UC News is a good feature, but it gets spammy sometimes.
UC Mini Themes
Another new feature on the browser is Themes. I personally like how the app looks as is, but if you want a little more customization to suit your taste, then you should check out the free themes available.
How to Add Themes on UC Mini
- Tap the Menu button.
- Select “Themes“.
- Select “Find out more wallpapers“.
- Find one that you like and hit the download button.
You can also check what the browser looks like before downloading a theme by tapping the image on the theme you want. It should load up a preview in about 3 seconds.
Recently downloaded themes get activated automatically.
You can also use pictures on your phone to customize the look of the browser.
How to Customize UC Mini with Images on Your Phone
- Tap the Menu button.
- Select “Themes“.
- Select “Local Photos” (on the bottom left).
- Select the image you want to use.
- Adjust the image by moving the box with the border to the position of the part of the image you want.
- Hit “Save” and it should be activated.
How to Remove Themes on UC Mini
If you end up not liking the themes, you can remove them by following the steps below.
- Tap the Menu button.
- Select “Themes”.
- Select “Edit”.
- Select the images you don’t want anymore by tapping them.
- Hit “Delete” and select “Delete” again.
You should note that the default themes cannot be deleted.
UC Night Mode
I’ve always liked the Night Mode on UC Mini browsers, it changes the way the browser looks, giving you a dark but very visible look which is good for browsing at night.
How to Activate or Deactivate UC Mini Night Mode
- Hit the Menu button
- Select Night and that’s all.
- Hit the Menu button
- Select “Normal” (the icon that looks like the sun).
The new UC Mini browser comes with an Ad blocking feature.
Ads are annoying when they get too many on certain websites so it’s best to save your data and experience a clean browsing experience by activating the adblock.
How to Enable UC Mini Ad Blocker
- Tap the Menu button
- Select “Tools”
- Select Ad Block.
- Switch on Ad Blocker and Powerful Ad Blocker.
A lot of websites rely on ads to make profit, I enable ads when they don’t seem too intrusive.
Hopefully, UC Mini will be updated with a feature that block ads on selected websites.
If ads don’t seem too disturbing, you can allow them, sometimes you can find something interesting from them.
UC Mini Overall Review
UC browsers have been around for a long time. I sometimes see questions like “Is UC Mini browser safe?” and well, if privacy is your main concern, I don’t think this is the browser for you.
If you do some research, you will find out that UC browsers aren’t that great when it comes to privacy.
So, my advice to you is, don’t use this browser if you want to do something sensitive like bank transactions. Don’t save passwords on the browser (or any browser for that matter).
Here is an article I go from an external source you can read to find out more about the privacy issues.
Privacy is a major concern these days, but if you are sure you can look past that or use the browser safely, well, you’ll be pleased with the features it offers.
It used to lack some features I wanted like copying texts on a website. Now you and I can copy texts without any problem.
Other features include:
- Clipboard support (where it saves some of your copied texts)
- Speed Mode (where you view website in either desktop mode, mobile mode or lite mode)
- Incognito (don’t need to explain this one)
- Having its unique and very fast downloader
- YouTube video streaming etc.
It is also a very fast browser, and with the new update, it’s even better.
If you’ve read up to this point, I believe you either want to try this app, or are already using it and just love reading everything you already know about it.
If you’re not sure about it, I say give it a try. Like I said, it’s fast and has been around for a while. I believe I’ve been using UC browsers since 2008, that was when I used Java phones.
I’m glad UC is still around.
Get the browser here, you’ll learn a lot about it as you keep using it.
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Until next time, guys, browse on.