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Android Hubs, Part 3: Using the Samsung Social Hub

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Samsung includes the Social Hub on Android 4 so you can obtain feeds from popular social networking sites and messages from multiple email accounts in one place. The Social Hub app is divided into two pages: Feeds and Messages. Within the Feeds page you can get aggregated updates from your Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn accounts. On the Messages page, you can read email messages from all email accounts you add into the system. In this article, you will learn how to add a social networking account and email account, how to read updates and messages, and also how to compose new updates and messages. You will also learn how to delete one or more accounts from the Social Hub app.

The built-in Social Hub app in Android 4 allows you to aggregate all your social networking feeds in one place so you can check incoming messages and Social Networking Service (SNS) updates, such as those from Facebook and Twitter, as well as view and manage emails from all your accounts. Open the Social Hub by tapping the Social Hub icon at the bottom of the home page shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1 The Social Hub icon appears third from the left in the row of icons at the bottom of the home screen.

When you open the Social Hub for the first time, you’ll see a welcome screen that will ask you to set up Social Hub now or set up the app later. Tap the Set Up Now button to open the Add Account page as shown in Figure 2 so you can add either an email account or an SNS account.

Figure 2 The Email account section contains options for adding email accounts and the SNS account section contains options for adding social networking accounts.

For this article, let’s add a LinkedIn account by tapping LinkedIn within the SNS Account section. The Samsung Social Hub screen appears so you can read the terms of use for the Social Hub app. When you finish reviewing the terms, tap the I accept all the terms above checkbox and then tap the Agree button.

The first step in the Set up your LinkedIn account tells you more about the setup process. Continue by tapping Next at the right side of the menu bar, which appears at the top of the screen. In the next step, type your LinkedIn account information within the Email and Password boxes as shown in Figure 3.

Figure 3 Tap the Show password checkbox if you want to show the password on the screen.

After you type in your login email and password, tap Log In within the menu bar. Once you log in, you’ll see all your updates from LinkedIn within the Social Hub feeds page. Swipe up and down the list to view feeds in the list that includes the name of your contact, the information in the feed, and when the feed was posted.  Tap a feed to open the Comments window, type a comment and then post it to that user’s profile.

Figure 4 The most recent feeds appear under the Today heading in the All feeds list.

In the menu bar, tap Messages if you want to view all private messages sent to your account. On the right side of the menu bar, you’ll see three icons from left to right:

  • The Refresh icon scans the LinkedIn server for any new feeds posted to your account. If there are any new feeds, they appear at the top of the list.
  • Tap the Write icon to open the Status update window. Within the window you can type the status update in the text box, attach a photo to the update if you want, and then tap Update in the window menu bar to send the update to your connections.
  • Tap the Menu icon to open the drop-down menu that contains the Accounts option.

After you tap Accounts in the menu, you can add an account within the Accounts page by tapping the Add Account button at the bottom of the screen shown in Figure 5.

Figure 5 The LinkedIn account in the list contains your email login ID.

You can select one of the following accounts other than the LinkedIn account you added:

  • A Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync connection. If you’re not sure if your email account connects to an Exchange email server, contact your network administrator.
  • Your email account.
  • Your Facebook account.
  • Your Twitter account.

Unfortunately, the Social Hub app only supports Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, and the app only supports one account in each of those three SNS sites. However, you can add multiple email accounts to the Social Hub to read all of your email from multiple sources within the Social Hub app.

Let’s add an email account by tapping Email in the Email Account section. In the Set Up Email page, type the account name and password in the appropriate boxes and then tap Next at the right side of the menu bar. The app checks your settings and once it confirms the settings are accurate, the app opens the Account Options page shown in Figure 6.

Figure 6 The Account Options page appears after the app confirms your email settings.

By default the app will check for new email messages every fifteen minutes, but you can change the interval by tapping the Every 15 minutes box and then selecting the interval from the drop-down menu. You can choose intervals from Never, which means you’ll need to check your email yourself by tapping the Refresh icon within the Messages page, to Once a Day.

By default you will also have the Galaxy Tab sync email and notify you when email arrives in the status bar. If you want to download files attached to your email messages when you have an active Wi-Fi connection, tap the Automatically download attachments when connected to Wi-Fi checkbox. Tap Next in the menu bar to proceed to the last Set Up Email page where you can type in a name for the account and the name you want displayed on outgoing messages. When you’re finished adding that information, tap Done in the menu bar.

The Email app opens and displays the latest email messages in your inbox. Tap the Task Manager icon in the status bar to switch back to the Social Hub app and view all feeds from your social networking sites. In the menu bar, tap Messages to open the list of inbox messages in all your email accounts as shown in Figure 7.

Figure 7 The most recent message appears at the top of the message list on the right side of the screen.

The email accounts connected to the Social Hub appear in the Email list on the left side of the screen. Note that you can also search for information within messages by tapping the Search icon in the menu bar and then typing your search term(s) in the Search box.

You can also write a message by tapping the Write icon and then selecting the email account you want to use in the Compose window. After you tap the email account to use in the list, the New Email window opens so you can compose the message as you would compose a message in the Email app.

Tap a message in the list to view the message within the Email app. You can then read and manipulate the message within the Email app as you learned to do in My Samsung Galaxy Tab. Return to the Social Hub by tapping the Email app icon at the left side of the menu bar.

If you tap the Menu icon at the right side of the menu bar, you’ll also be able to delete one or more messages, view and edit your list of accounts, mark one or more messages as unread, or change the list order. That is, you can change the appearance of the list so you view the list from newest message to oldest (which is the default), the oldest message to newest, or by the sender name in alphabetical order.

You can remove an account by tapping the Menu icon and then tapping Accounts in the menu. Within the Accounts page, tap Remove account at the right side of the menu bar. Next, tap the checkbox to the right of the email account(s) and/or social networking site(s) you want to delete. Delete the account by tapping Delete in the menu bar to open the Delete pop-up window and then tap OK in the window. The Accounts page reappears and no longer includes the deleted account(s) in the list.

Now that you know how to add social networking and email accounts, you can add your accounts and make your Galaxy Tab life even easier using the Social Hub app.

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