'What's up?' Motorola's Touchless Controls can now read your notifications out loud

moto x touchless controls
Mike Homnick

Users of select Motorola phones can now have their notifications read aloud by asking the phone “What's up?”

The new feature is part of Motorola's Touchless Control app for the Moto X, Droid Maxx, Droid Ultra, and Droid Mini. Touchless Control lets users control their phone with voice commands by first saying “OK Google Now,” even when the phone's screen is off.

In addition to “What's up,” users can just say “Read notifications" instead.

Motorola also updated its Migrate app, which helps new users transfer content from an old phone. The app now lets you choose which content to transfer and supports automatic imports of SIM card contacts.

Motorola has shown surprising dedication to improving the software on its newer phones, at least compared to other Android phone makers. In January, the company added hands-free texting and made it easier for iCloud users to import their data. Motorola was also the first non-stock Android phone maker to update its handsets to Android 4.4 KitKat, delivering the update months ahead of HTC, Samsung and LG.

Hopefully the attention to software doesn't go away under new ownership. Motorola has been doing its best software work as a Google subsidiary, but in January, Google announced plans to sell Motorola to Lenovo for $2.91 billion. Lenovo will likely use Motorola as a way into the U.S. smartphone market, but it's still unclear how this will affect Motorola's product pipeline and software features.

For now, users should just sit back, relax, and soak in the notifications without picking up their phones.

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