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Image: Android

Android has added a handy way to keep your phone unlocked

Although it has its drawbacks.
Mar 24th 2015, 8:00 PM 14,316 9

AS ANY ANDROID user knows, it takes a while for any new version to properly roll out to users.

The latest version Lollipop is only on 3.3% of devices now and that number will begin to slowly grow as newer devices are released, and it arrives on older devices.

Those who already have access to it will already have seen some of its security features like trusted places (using GPS to unlock your phone) and trusted face (another name for face unlock).

Yet a new option quietly introduced this week is one called on-body detection. This feature uses your accelerometer to tell if you’re holding your phone or if it’s in your pocket.

The idea is that when you’re carrying it, you will want to check it often and unlocking it each time can be a pain. This disables the lock screen until you put it down on a table or surface.

Android Unlock on-body The on-body detection screen when you activate it. Source: Android

As you may have suspected, there are some obvious problem behind this system. If you hand the device to someone else, it will stay unlocked as long as they hold it and the same would apply if you were pickpocketed (although you’re warned about this before you activate it).

If you’re in the small group of people who (a) are confident your phone won’t be stolen and (b) have Lollipop, it will make things more convenient for you. Just be aware you’re sacrificing a great deal of security when you’re on the move.

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Quinton O'Reilly


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