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How to set custom vibrations on your Android phone

android vibration featured

The beauty of Android lies in the freedom it provides. Think of any customization you can do to your phone, and it’s likely possible in Android. The system itself allows you to do a lot, but if you add a few customization apps to the pack, you get a winning combination. A great example is custom vibrations on Android.

I prefer to go as stock as possible. This means tweaking as many things inside the Settings app alone. Samsung’s OneUI comes with a Call vibration pattern and Notification vibration pattern settings (Settings > Sound) but there are still Android skins without these options. Not to mention that you have limited choices even when there are custom vibration options on your Android.

As you see, it’s not always possible to get what you want just from Settings, and that’s when you’ll need to use customization apps.

It’s usually the little, unimportant things that make the difference. And that’s exactly what we’re talking about in this article. One of the little things users are unable to tweak inside Settings is vibration. Unlike ringtones, you simply cannot set a custom vibration for your calls, messages, or notifications.

On top of that, Google has also cut the necessary permissions for apps like Good Vibrations, which are specifically designed for setting custom vibrations. So, the only solution now is to use apps that are not made solely for this purpose but contain this ability, among other features.

The best apps for this purpose are MacroDroid and Textra SMS. So, I’m going to show you how to set custom vibrations using each one of these apps.

Set custom vibrations with MacroDroid

MacroDroid is one of the most powerful apps you can install on your phone. It allows you to completely automate the use of your device. The features and options this app offers are almost countless, so I’m not going to dig deeper into details, because our focus here is getting custom vibrations.

MacroDroid works on the principle of Triggers and Actions. This means you can set up each event that occurs on your phone to provoke a certain action. In our case, we’re going to set an incoming call/text/notification to trigger a custom vibration.

Here’s how to do that:

  1. Download both MacroDroid and Settings Helper from the Play Store.
  2. Open MacroDroid and tap Add Macro.
  3. Tap Call/SMS, and choose which action you want to set a custom vibration for (Call Incoming or SMS Received).
  4. Grant the necessary permissions.
  5. Now, choose a specific contact (or a group of contacts) you want to set a custom vibration for.
  6. Now, head over to the Actions tab.custom vibration android call
  7. Tap Device Actions Vibrate.
  8. Choose the vibration style from the list.
  9. Tap the checkmark to save the macro.

That’s it, now every time a selected contact calls or sends a message, you’ll hear the custom vibration.

The obvious drawback of this method is that MacroDroid runs in the background all the time, which will consume the battery faster. But if you’re okay with that, using MacroDroid is a decent solution for setting up a custom vibration on your phone.

Use Textra SMS

Another way of setting custom vibrations is by using Textra SMS. But obviously, you’re limited to text messages here. Textra SMS is one of the best third-party SMS apps for Android. It offers tons of customization features, including the ability to set custom vibrations for your messages.

Here’s how to set custom vibrations in Textra:

  1. Open the Textra SMS app.
  2. Go to Settings Customize Notifications.custom vibration android sms 1024x607 1
  3. Tap Vibrate pattern.
  4. Choose the pattern you like.

Update: After the Textra SMS version 4.29, vibration patterns are removed. The only way to avoid this is to uninstall the app from the Play Store, download and install this Textra APK and disable updates in Play Store. The 4.29 version from September 2020 is the latest one with the Vibration pattern feature. Have in mind that some functionality may suffer because the app is outdated.

That’s it, now every time you receive a new message, you’ll hear the selected pattern. This is a convenient way of getting that customized vibration, if you don’t mind a third-party SMS app, of course.

Using MacroDroid or Textra SMS are the two most practical ways of setting up custom vibrations. However, if you know an even better solution, please share it with us in the comments down below.

Editor’s note: This article was originally published in January 2019. We made sure to revamp it for freshness and accuracy.

Picture of Ivan Jenic

Ivan Jenic

Editor-in-chief at Mobile Internist. @ivan_jenic I founded Mobile Internist to help people understand technology better. And maybe solve some annoying problems. That's about it, cheers!
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