How to Enable Soft Keys on Android Phone

Soft keys (also known as Navigation Bar) were introduced on the Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich devices. Soft keys are hidden in most of the Android devices.

In this post, we will see the different ways to enable it on Android [Both rooted and non-rooted devices]. Let’s get started.

Enable Soft Keys on Rooted Android Devices

Method #1

Editing Build.prop File


To enable soft keys, you need to edit the build.prop file.

Open ES File Explorer app.

Go to /system. Copy the build.prop file and paste it in the SD Card. Now we have the backup of the build.prop.

Again go to /system and tap the build.prop file. Select ES Note Editor option.

Click on overflow menu at the top and select “Edit”.

Add the following lines at the end


Adding soft keys code in build.prop file

Press back button and select “Yes” in the confirmation message.

Reboot your phone.

Now you can see the soft keys on your Android phone.

Soft Keys Android

You can disable these keys by removing the code from the build.prop file.

Alternatively, you can disable the soft keys at any time by changing the value 0 to 1.


Method #2

Xposed Installer

If you are a Xposed framework user, then you can use the GravityBox module to enable the soft keys. Here are the steps:

Install GravityBox module as per your Android device version.

Go to Navigation bar tweaks.

Enable the Master switch.

That’s all. Reboot your phone and you can see the navigation bar on your handset.

After reboot, Go to Navigation bar tweaks in GravityBox module.

There you can see many options to customize the navigation bar. I suggest you to play with the options and customize soft keys as per your wish.

Enable Soft Keys on Non-Rooted Android Devices

Simple Control

You can get the soft keys on non-rooted Android devices by using this app. Here is the download link.

Install and open the app.

At the first run, it will take you to the Accessibility. Enable it for the app.

This app has a lot of customization options. You can use them to customize the navigation bar as per your liking.

Also see:

How to Disable Capacitive Buttons on Android

Screen Pinning: What is it and How to Use it

How to Remap Capacitive Buttons

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