Have you noticed some apps don’t use the full screen on your Galaxy S9? If so, this guide will explain how to force apps into full screen mode on the Galaxy S9 and Galaxy S9+. These phones have big and beautiful 5.8 or 6.2-inch curved screens, and you might as well take full advantage of it.
Thanks to the 18.5:9 aspect ratio on the Galaxy S9 the screen is taller and not as wide. This makes certain apps use less than the full screen. As a result, you might see black bars at the top and bottom of apps.
This is similar to 16:9 widescreen movies and video a few years ago. With new phones like the Galaxy S9, Note 8, Pixel 2 XL and more having this screen type, a lot of users are experiencing problems. Until more app developers adopt this standard, you’ll need to enable or force “full screen apps” yourself in the settings menu. Here’s how.
We saw a similar problem last year with the Galaxy S8, and even more recently with the iPhone X. As a result, most developers quickly updated their apps to work across a wide array of screen sizes, resolution, and aspect ratios. Most Android apps easily and instantly scale up to fill the entire screen. This way they work on a smartwatch, the Galaxy S9, or Android TV.
However, a few might not, and you’ll have to manually force them into the right mode so they use the full 6.2-inch Galaxy S9+ screen you paid for.
How to Enable Full Screen Apps on the Galaxy S9
Most apps and games look great on the bigger screen, but not all of them. Some fit, but they just don’t look right, or content gets cut off. As a result, you might need to force full screen mode on some, and disable it for others.
- Pull down the notification bar and head to Settings (gear-shaped icon near the top right)
- Find and select Display
- Select Full Screen Apps
- Find an app that isn’t highlighted and switch full screen mode On
- Force any eligible app into full screen mode
As you can see from our image above, most of the apps work perfectly on the Galaxy S9. That’s where you need to navigate to in settings. Then, simply scroll through the list and enable (or disable) the apps you need to change. We had to force Snapchat into full screen mode, and disable it on one game where the buttons disappeared off the sides of the screen.
It’s also worth mentioning that videos have a similar option that will pop up for users. Letting us expand them to full screen if it isn’t already. Or, if you’re watching YouTube, pinch to zoom will expand it to use the entire display.
Should You Do This?
Whether or not you force apps to use the entire screen is up to you. Personally, everything I switched worked fine, and I’ve experienced zero problems. However, you might, so keep that in mind. If any app starts to look funny just follow the steps again, and toggle it back off. At this point, most app developers have fixed any display problems, but you might run into the occasional issue.
In closing, some apps may look squished on the edges or certain elements could slide off the edge of your screen. This is because developers need to update their apps. Again, expect almost everything to work perfectly on the Galaxy S9. If our tips don’t fix your problem, you can always reach out to the developer on the Google Play Store. Before you go, take a peek at these 15 common Galaxy S9 problems and how to fix them.