How to use Tasker

May 1, 2013

    Associating tasks with contexts

    Actions that are grouped in tasks won’t do much unless they are actually run — either automatically or manually.

    As I’ve mentioned in the previous section, you can run tasks manually. Although it’s already convenient to manually execute several actions all at once, it’s more convenient to run them in some kind of automatic way. Here’s where Tasker actually shines — it can automate task execution according to rules, conditions, or triggers (also known as “contexts” in Tasker).

    You can think of Tasker contexts as conditions or situations, which, when true, will instruct the app to run the associated task(s). You can also think of contexts as the “if” part of a conditional statement, while the tasks are the “then” part.

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    Tasker provides numerous contexts, grouped into 6 categories:

    1. Application — Triggers task execution when an app is launched or run.
    2. Day — Runs tasks depending on day(s) that you specify.
    3. Event — Tasks run when certain device “events” happen on your device. This category has the following subcategories: Date/Time, Display, File, Hardware, Phone, Power, Sensor, System, Tasker, UI, Variables, 3rd Party
    4. Location — Runs tasks when the device enters a user-defined geographical location.
    5. State — Runs tasks when the device enters a certain state or condition (e.g., Bluetooth status is off, Wi-Fi is connected, etc.). This category has the following subcategories: App, Display, Hardware, Net, Phone, Plugin, Power, Sensor, Tasker, Variables.
    6. Time — Runs tasks according to the time of day that you specify. A beginning and ending time can be specified. Task execution can also be repeated every n minutes or hours after first execution.

    Let’s go back to our “Batt Save” task. You can set this task to run, for instance, every time your battery level goes below 50%. Here’s how you might set all that up:

    1. Open the Profiles tab in Tasker.
    2. Tap the Add New Profile button (plus icon) at the bottom-right of the screen.
    3. Select State > Power > Battery Level. This will be the context or trigger under this profile.
    4. On the edit page, drag the To slider to “50″. Keep the From slider at “0″. This setting means “When the battery level is between 0 and 50.”
    5. Tap the Back button to return to the previous screen. From the popup list that appears, tap on “Batt Save” to select it and associate it with the context.
    6. You’ll now see the new profile on the Profiles tab. To its right is an On/Off switch. If the switch is on, Tasker will perform the associated tasks when the trigger is activated or when the context or conditions are met.
    7. To change the default profile name, long-tap on the profile name and tap the Name button (represented by the uppercase letter A) at the top of the screen. Type the name on the text field, and tap the checkmark button to save it.
    8. Below the new profile’s name, you’ll see the context name and a green arrow pointing towards the task associated with it. You can also rename the context name, if you want. Just long-tap on the context name, select Name, type the name on the text field, and save it by tapping the checkmark button.

    Now, each time your device reaches 50 percent of its battery power or lower, Tasker will execute the actions listed in the Batt Save task that you defined.

    In the next section, I’ll talk a bit about creating scenes in Tasker. These are custom user interfaces that can help you design your own mini apps using Tasker. I’ll also discuss variables very briefly. Both topics deserve their own separate tutorials, but I’ll tell you about them broadly in the next section — so, go ahead and go to the next page.

    Comments

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100000794127341 Nisarag Cricmaster

      Excellent!

    • Joe Morrison

      Tasker is the first app I install on any android device. You can easily automate anything on your phone. Here are a couple of my tasks.

      -nightly Rsync of SD card to my server if the device is connected to my home WiFi and plugged in.

      -auto enable GPS anytime an app that requires GPS is launched.

      -disable screen lock, change volume, enable airplane mode, connect to wifi, change Google voice forwarding destination, register SIP account to my PBX… via task called from NFC tag

      -launch Spotify, disable screen lock, launch wave control, when headphones are detected.

      The list goes on and on… this app is totally worth it.

      • Stephen Ting

        how to Rsync of SD Card?

    • Kevin

      Excellent breakdown, you explained each component of Tasker beautifully. Hopefully it will encourage more people to give it a try. Well done!

    • Mr_Je11yman

      Tasker is intimidating, but you warm up to it really fast, so I encourage everyone to try it. I am just a basic Tasker user (so far) and I have already set it to do the following:

      Turn off bluetooth, disable screen lock, enable wi-fi when I pull into my driveway

      Silence ALL volume on my phone the minute I get to church on Sunday, and restore all volume levels after I leave

      Since I leave my phone on all the time I have my volumes reduced to 20% at night and no notifications, so if I get an emergency call at least it won’t shock me awake.

      Reminds me to take the trash out on trash day

    • Sudeepto Dutta

      This app separates Android from all the OS …

      Really worth paying for this one

    • Nacos

      Hat’s off to you, Elmer for writing this article. Advanced and beginners alike, should give Tasker much more attention than it currently gets. It truly deserves it! Android + Tasker is a very, very, very powerful combination and once the basics are covered, the sky is the limit. I remember once reading a comment in Google Play from somebody complaining that Tasker was too expensive at $6.99. When one truly reveals its potential, this amount apears ridiculously trivial – in parallel software universes Tasker could easily be compared to Adobe Photoshop, which happens to cost just a “little” more than merely $6.99.

    • Guy De Vos

      Tasker is by far the most useful app I’ve ever purchased. This app alone makes the whole iOS vs Android debate seem ridiculous. Android wins, no matter what anybody says.

    • http://www.tekshop.us/ TekShop

      Very nice guide, Tasker can be a little complicated for a lot of users. Thanks for writing this.

    • brian robinson

      i had tasker for quite a while got it on sale.

      never used it though i knew it was good purchase at the time,

      i am absolutely gobsmacked this this thing is the bomb duffer.
      just wish there was more tutorials like this thanx.

    • Leonid Joseph

      Will it allow me to auto record all phone calls in my Samsung Galaxy chat. No auto call recording software works with the Chat. And it is legally ok to record here. Please reply fast. Thanks in advance.

    • Philip DiDomenico

      Excellent job. This is the clearest explanation of Tasker I’ve seen.

    • kyoshi

      Help! How can I use Tasker to allow bluetooth voice dialing when screen is locked? (kenwood receiver, Samsung S4)

    • Siddharth

      The science way to say this look they have given us a PCB special

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