One can find the double-tap features on many smartphones out there. Allowing users to put their phones to sleep or wake them up, these ones are really useful for those who don’t like having to press buttons all the time. When it comes to Android devices, most of them have their Power key on the top of the external housing – either on the left, but usually on the right, it’s quite annoying an tiring for our fingers to reach out there.

If you agree with the previous statement, you probably also dream of finding a way to add the double tap feature to your Android phone! Well, luckily enough, this is more than just a dream, as many tricks and apps out there made it possible to put your phone to sleep with just a simple gesture. While there are a few methods to choose from, we’re going to focus on some of them that we consider to be most useful.

double tap

The Greenify and Apex Launcher combo

One of the easiest tricks to enable the tap-to-sleep and tap-to-wake option on a phone is to have it rooted. In order for the app to let you use a simple double-tap gesture to control your device, it needs root access, which is something that many of you might not have.

If that’s your case, you can use these two applications to take advantage of the same functions without having to root. The first and most important step is to go to Google Play and look for both Apex Launcher and Greenify. Once you downloaded and installed each one of them, do as shown below:

  1. Launch the Apex app and go to Settings.
  2. Choose Behavior Settings, and then select Desktop double tap.
  3. On the following menu, select Launch shortcut and wait.
  4. Choose the Hibernate & Lock Screen one and close the app.
Now that you changed all settings in Apex Launcher, you will also need to use Greenify. The latter will help you unlock the screen, so that it can be freely used to give commands to the phone. When you selected the Hibernate and Lock Screen option in the first app, Greenify should’ve automatically launched a window to ask for your permission. When this happens, do as follows:

  1. Wait for the discussion to launch and read the info.
  2. Tick the option under Greenify Automator and click Activate.
  3. This one should read “Allow Greenify to turn off screen immediately after automated hibernation.”

Whenever you want to disable this option and go back to using your Power button, you can simply launch Greenfy and go to the same menu as before. Clicking on the previously-mentioned setting, tap Deactivate and you’re done.

Knock Lock for the win

No matter if your smartphone’s Power key is not working anymore or you’re simply tired of moving your fingers up and down all the time, you can get rid of this problem right away. Thanks to a simple app called Knock Lock, you will be able to quickly enable the double-tap feature on any Android phone running on version 4.0 or newer of this OS.

The cool thing about it is that it doesn’t require your phone to be rooted. After downloading the app, a window will launch saying that this tool is not active on your phone. You should click on the screen to change this aspect and do as follows:

  1. Select Lock Screen and click on Activate.
  2. Wait for the app to be active, and then press Knock Settings.
  3. Click Open Knock Settings and tap on the Settings icon.
  4. Adjust the width and height of the spot and click Save.

As you can gather from the video above, this method will not allow you to use the entire surface of the display in order to sleep/wake the phone. However, it will create a hot spot that is normally found on the upper left side of the screen – this is where you can double tap to do the same as you’d do with the previous app. All you need to do is to look for the white K inside of a red box – K for Knock Lock.

The Nova Launcher option

Another app that functions very similarly to the way you’d use Apex Launcher is Nova Launcher. The same as you did for the first method, you will only be able to use this one if you also installed Greenify on the device. Therefore, you should go to the Google Play store and look for these two tools and install them.

Whenever you’re ready, check the steps below:

  1. Open Nova Launcher and go to its Settings.
  2. Click on Gestures and Buttons and scroll down to Gestures.
  3. Select Double Tap and wait for the Choose Action menu to load.
  4. Go to Shortcuts, and then click on Hibernate and Lock Screen.

You may have noticed before that selecting the right settings in the first application is going to automatically send you to the second app you need to use. In this case, Greenify will open a new discussion and ask you to authorize Nova to use your screen.

You should go under the Automator and click on Allow Greenfy, and then confirm this option by pressing Activate. You’re now good to go and can test if the display is working properly by double tapping to send it to sleep.


If your phone is already rooted, you can do this in a much easier way. Assuming that you already have Xposed Installer on the phone – go ahead and download it in case you don’t – you should open this one and look for an app called APK.

This one can also be downloaded by accessing this link, which will automatically save the executable onto your device. By clicking on it, you will be able to install the tool within a few seconds, which will also send APK Double Tap to Sleep to your Xposed folder.

Do the following when this is complete:

  1. Open Xposed and go to Modules.
  2. Click on the APK app and enable it.
  3. Close Xposed and test your display.

As you can see in the Youtube video above, this app is going to automatically create a hot spot for your screen. This will usually be somewhere on the top of the display, but you can try and double tap around various parts of it to check where your stop is, as it varies from one device to the other. It is somehow similar to what Knock Lock would do, just that the area for double tapping is a lot wider.

The easy way – DTSO

Last but definitely not the least option to look at is DTSO. The name stands for Double Tap Screen On/Off, and it’s an app that works very similarly to what you’ve noticed with Knock Lock. By creating an area for double tapping on your screen, it lets you set up how big this one should be.

Apart from that, it also lets you select what area of the screen you want to enable for waking the phone and which one you want to be activated for sleep mode. You can learn more about the way this one works by checking out this link and download it for free if your device is running on Android 2.3.3 or later.

After installing DTSO from Google Play, you should launch the tool and go to Settings to get started. You will see an option for Floating Widget which you can click on to adjust its size and transparency, but also the number of clicks required. Therefore, you can turn a double tap into a triple tap if you want to!


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Alex holds an engineering degree in Telecommunications and has been covering technology as a writer since 2009. Customization is his middle name and he doesn’t like to own stock model gadgets. When he’s away from the keyboard, simpler things like hiking, mountain climbing and having a cold drink make his day.