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How to automate Android volume settings based on location

Android offers wide-ranging flexibility in its settings, but the joy of fiddling with them does wear off after a while. Still, most of us would prefer to keep our ringtones quiet at work and loud on the street. Llama is a free app that lets you set location-based profiles to switch ring volume and many other settings as you move from place to place. Here's how to get started.

If you find yourself constantly fiddling with the volume settings on your Android phone as you make your way through the day, there's a simple way to automate the process of turning notifications and other sounds up, down, or off depending on your location. Llama, a free application, cleverly figures out where you are without needing GPS or even Wi-Fi enabled, then adjusts volume accordingly. Here's how you get started:

  • Install the Llama app and fire it up.
  • Select the Areas tab, and long-press on "Home" or "Work" if you're in either of those locations, or "+" on the bottom right if you're somewhere else you want to tag, like a coffee shop you visit often.
  • Select "Start Learning Area," then tell Llama how long you're going to stay put. (It takes this time to check in with local cell sites it uses to identify this location in the future, so it works best in dense areas like cities.)
  • Llama Areas tab
    Llama Areas tab

  • Select the Events tab. There are several presets with popular options like "Left home" or "Quiet at night." Long-press any one of them to edit, delete, or disable it. The stock options keep your phone at normal volume most of the time, but quiet at work and silent at night. They're easy to edit--just long-press an event, select "Edit Event," then change parameters or add new ones. You probably will want to shift some of the times to accommodate your personal schedule.
  • Llama Events tab
    Llama Events tab

  • If you want to change the volume settings or add a new profile, select the Profiles tab, which comes with four presets: Loud, Normal, Quiet, and Silent. Long-press any one of them to edit or delete it, or to activate it and lock it so your settings will stop changing based on location. Tap the + button to create new profiles (such as maximum media volume but no ringing, for example).
Llama Profiles tab
Llama Profiles tab

That's the basic operation of Llama. You can also create your own events using the + button at the bottom right of the Events screen--there are tons of triggers and actions you can choose, not just place and volume. Experiment and see what works for you!