Google (NASDAQ:GOOG) is set to add a new ‘on-body detection’ feature inside the Smart Lock settings to Android Lollipop that allows the smartphone to remain unlocked as long as it remains with the user. The feature which is under testing, is aimed at reducing the number of times the user has to unlock the phone.
The feature will utilize the accelerometer in the phone to determine the range of motion and will decide if the device can remain unlocked. Once the user unlocks the phone before putting into the pocket, the phone will remain unlocked. However the feature will not be able to identify the personal identity of a person while carrying in the pocket.
Android Lollipop devices are likely to get the feature in the coming days as the feature was first spotted on Nexus 4 and is being rolled out to Nexus devices. Only a limited number of users are noticing the new Smart Lock feature, indicating that Google plans to roll out the feature slowly.
The on-body detection feature is an addition to the Google Trusted Devices, Trusted Places and Trusted Face features and is not a part of the latest OS. The ‘on-body detection‘ feature is likely to be welcomed by smartphone users, though there is a security risk in this feature. The company is testing the feature with a limited number of users to determine its usability.
Users can try to activate the feature on devices running the latest Google Play Services ( 7.0.97). Some non-nexus users running Android 5.0 have notified that the feature has been added. The feature might utilize the specific heart rate rhythm of a user to remain unlocked in the future. Analyzing body temperature and voice identification might also be utilized for improved security.
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