How to hide the status bar at the top of your Galaxy S20 screen “Android :: Gadget Hacks

In previous versions of Android, you lost about an inch of screen space to the status bar and navigation bar. But if you turn on Android 10’s new navigation gestures on your Samsung Galaxy, you can get the bottom part back – and with the help of ADB, you can get the top part back as well.

Due to the cutout in the front camera of the Galaxy S20, it is not easy to hide the status bar. Samsung includes the ability to set apps to full screen mode to comply, but most apps do not support this feature. There are two methods of really hiding the icons at the top of your screen, but as you’ll see, neither is perfect.

What you will need

  • Windows, macOS, or Linux computer
  • USB data cable

Step 1: Download Platform-Tools

First, you’ll need software to help your phone and computer communicate. So use the link below to download the Google Platform Tools ZIP file. It’s free and there is a version for every major desktop operating system.

Step 2: extract the ZIP

Extract the ZIP file using the preinstalled extractor or third-party options like 7-zip. Since you’ll be using the “Platform Tools” folder later, drag it to your desktop for easy access.

Image by Dallas Thomas / Gadget Hacks

Step 3: Open a prompt in the Platform-Tools folder

If your computer is running Windows, open “Command Prompt.” Mac and Linux users will open “Terminal”. Type “cd” and then press the space bar, but do not press Enter. Drag the platform-tools folder to Terminal or Command Prompt to automatically populate its location. Now press enter (or return) on the keyboard.

Image by Dallas Thomas / Gadget Hacks

Step 4: Allow USB debugging

On your phone, activate the developer options by going to Settings -> About phone -> Software information and tapping “Build number” seven times until you are asked to enter your lock screen password or gesture. After entering, a toast message will inform you that you are a developer.

You will now find “Developer options” at the very bottom of the settings. Select it and turn on the toggle next to USB Debugging. Using the USB data cable, connect your phone to your computer. A prompt will appear asking you to “Allow USB Debugging”, choose “Allow”.

Image by Dallas Thomas / Gadget Hacks

If you don’t see the prompt, enter the following command in the command prompt or in the terminal:

adb devices

Mac and Linux users will need to put “./” before sending an adb command, including the one above.

Step 5: Adjust the overscan values

The best method is to push the display upwards to hide the contents of the status bar. This does not remove the status bar, but moves the system and notification icons off the screen so that they appear blank. And since most apps have a status bar that is transparent or matching the background color, you will effectively hide your status bar.

To try it out, enter the following in the command prompt or terminal, replacing X with -80 for Galaxy S20, -90 for Galaxy S20 +, and -100 for Galaxy S20 Ultra:

adb shell wm overscan 0,X,0,0

For example, on my Galaxy S20 Ultra using a Mac, I entered “./adb shell wm overscan 0, -100,0,0” without the quotes. If you still see some of the text, you can increase the second number (technically decrease it since it’s a negative) and send the command again to push the screen higher.

The problem with this method is that you lose access to the status bar. This includes the swipe down gesture to reveal the notification shade. You can add this functionality back using a third-party home screen launcher like Nova or Action, but you’ll still lose sight of your status bar.

Moreover, the same number used to hide the status bar when the phone is unlocked will not work on the lock screen. If you increase the number, you may move the screen too much, which affects the layout of the apps. In addition, the icon indicating the fingerprint reader on the screen will be off, a little above where you should place your finger.

Step 6: Try immersive mode instead (optional)

If you decide you don’t like the overscan method, you can reverse its effects by sending this command:

adb shell wm overscan 0,0,0,0

From there, your other option is to turn on Immersive Mode. In the past, this was the best method, but due to the way Android handles the punch hole, this method has a serious flaw, a black bar.

In most apps this will create a persistent black bar instead of the status bar, but it will allow you to access the drop-down menu more consistently (just swipe twice). To use this method, type the following command in the command prompt or terminal and press Enter:

adb shell settings put global policy_control immersive.status=*

If you decide you don’t like this method either, type the following into the terminal or command prompt to override it:

adb shell settings put global policy_control null*

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