Switch to Guest User Account in Android Lollipop

One of the new features in the latest version of the Android Lollipop is the ability to add multiple users for the same smartphone or tablet. This way more than one person can use the same device without accessing each others data. This new feature makes Android a true multi-user operating system just Like Windows or Linux. And if you have protected your user account with a password, then other users won’t be able to access it either. Just like in other multi-user operating systems, Android Lollipop also offers a Guest user account. Here is how you can switch to the guest user account in Android Lollipop:

  1. When on the home screen of your Android device, swipe down two times to access the quick settings screen. Touch the circular user account graphic near the top-right corner of the screen.
  2. This will show you the User screen that lets you choose a user account that you want to switch to. By default only the Owner account is active. You have to touch on the Add Guest icon to activate the guest account.Android Lollipop Guest User
  3. Once the guest account is activated, nothing will happen – you will still be using the default Owner account. You have to follow the step 1 and 2 above once again, but this time instead of Add Guest, you will see the activated Guest account icon. Touch this Guest icon to switch to the guest account.
  4. If you have ever used the guest account, you will be asked if you want to start over or continue from the last time. The first option (start over) will wipe the previous guest user session and start afresh, while the second option (continue last session) will keep the guest user data from the last time you used the guest account.Android Lollipop Guest User
  5. After having used the guest user account, you can follow the same steps to switch back to the owner account. If you have set the password (or PIN or Pattern) for the Owner account, then you will have to enter this password to switch to the Owner account.

Conclusion: It is a good idea to password protect your usual Owner account in Android Lollipop and switch to the Guest account before letting others use your phone including the younger kids. This way they cannot mess up your data or snoop into your personal email and text messages.