How to Use Multiple Users in Android 4.2 Jelly Bean

One of the most significant features included in Android 4.2 Jelly Bean update is the ability to create multiple user accounts on a single tablet.

This new Multiple user set up allows Android tablet owners create up to eight separate accounts for friends, family members or significant others, all on a single tablet like the Nexus 7 or Nexus 10. By doing this, each user can put a personalized touch on the tablet with their own home screens, apps and gallery. It will also help to prevent cluttering of the home screen.

After using Android 4.2 Jelly Bean on my Nexus 7 for a few days, it’s easily my favorite feature as has allowed my girlfriend and I to share the tablet but not intrude on the others set up and content. It’s also going to be handy for tablets that are used by more than just two people.

Read: Android 4.2 on Nexus 7 Review: Final Impressions and Performance.


Setting up multiple user accounts is useful for tablets that have multiple users.


Unfortunately, Google has almost hidden the feature in the depths of the Android settings making it difficult to find. However, once unearthed, the feature will likely become a favorite for Android tablet owners out there who share their device.

Read: Android 4.2 Jelly Bean: Everything You Need to Know.

So, here is how to set up the Multiple User feature in Android 4.2 Jelly Bean on an Android tablet. (Smartphones are not supported.)

How to Use Multiple Users in Android 4.2 Jelly Bean

The Multiple User feature can be found in the Settings of a tablet device that is running the latest version of Android, Android 4.2 Jelly Bean. Simply find the Settings and enter it to find a screen that looks like this.


Once there, you’ll want to head on down to Users. Once in there, you’ll be at a screen like the one you see below. On it, you should see the owner of the device listed at the top and a blank section below listed as Other Users.



To add a new user, tap on Add User in the top right corner.  A prompt will appear letting you know that there is a setup process, which takes about 5 to 10 minutes, and that any user can accept updated app permissions for all the users.

As Google notes, you’ll want the person whose account it is to be present as there are some personal questions that need to be answered.Tap Setup Now and you’re on your way.

Most users will then be taken to the lock screen. Unlock the device and follow the on-screen instructions. You’ll be prompted to input Gmail information if necessary. If no Gmail is necessary, you’ll be asked to sign up for a Google Account that will sync up Google’s apps with a specific account linked to the user.

Next, Google will ask for permission to use location. These can be changed at any time in the device Settings.


The software will ask for the name of the person to personalize applications and voilà, setup is done and the tablet is now armed with multiple user accounts. Novice users will then want to pay attention to some of the hints that Google provides after progressing through the finished screen as they will elaborate on some of Android’s most powerful features.


From there, users of the tablet will be able to use their account from the bottom of the lock screen. Simply tap on the right icon and it will bring up the appropriate users lock screen and wallpaper. Owners of the device will have the authority to delete accounts if deemed necessary.

Settings like Wi-Fi and brightness will be maintained across all accounts but there are some ways beyond the home screens and wallpaper where Google has given users a way to personalize the experience.

Things like photos and video will be attached to a certain user. If a user takes a screenshot, it won’t be available in the gallery of another user. As for apps, if the app is already present, then Google will simply allow access to the application if the person tries to download it from the Google Play Store instead of downloading it.

All of this transitions perfectly from user to user and I have yet to run into any issues.