Published: Tue, July 30, 2019
Tech | By Constance Martin

Pixel 4 to get touch-less gestures, Face ID-like scanner

Pixel 4 to get touch-less gestures, Face ID-like scanner

Google's first official picture of the Pixel 4. Google calls this Motion Sense, although it will apparently only be available "in select Pixel countries", so expect the U.S. and other English-speaking countries to receive the feature at least a few months earlier than other countries.

Google's new diagram of the Pixel 4.

Google mentioned that Soli sensor data is processed on your phone always, so it's never saved or shared with other Google services. Today, the company revealed details about the technology behind two new features coming to Pixel 4: face unlock gesture controls. Then, on July 29, Google shared a teaser video confirming what'll likely be the Pixel 4's biggest selling point - Motion Sense.

Google continues to stay ahead of the all the leaks and rumors spilling out about their upcoming Pixel 4 flagship smartphone. It looks like the new gesture bar in Android Q, so it will be interesting to see whether Google will allow people to customise its positioning. You will also be able to wave your hands to silence alarms and calls. But while optical implementations on the G8 and others are clunky, I have high hopes for Soli's radar technology, having seen it in person before. Before our worldwide readers get too excited, there is a fine print saying that Motion Sense might not be available in all countries where the Pixel 4 will roll out to. As you reach for Pixel 4, Soli proactively turns on the face unlock sensors, recognizing that you may want to unlock your phone.

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Google notes that "Motion Sense will be available in select Pixel countries", which probably indicates that Soli will have some regulatory hurdles to overcome. In the video, we can see the person changing songs by swiping their hand in front of the display.

As described, Face Unlock will work much like Apple's Face ID, though it should start authenticating as soon as you lift the phone and work in almost every orientation, even upside down.

The system is pretty much identical to the way it functions on iOS in terms of hardware and Google also says it will save the facial data securely in its Titan M chip so nobody will have access to it. A few features from the last Pixel appear to be missing, though.

While current Android facial recognition systems just take a picture of your face, Face unlock on Pixel 4 will scan a 3D map of your face using a dot projector, IR camera and flood illuminator and then will use that information to unlock.

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