Google Is Testing Double Tap Gestures on the Rear of Pixel Phones in Android 11

BY Mahit Huilgol

Published 21 Feb 2020

Pixel 4 XL back

Over the past several years we have seen different ways in which users could interact with their smartphones. We have seen squeezable frames, motion sensors and also an ability to navigate by using fingerprint sensors. Google recently launched the first preview of Android 11 and the folks at XDA-Developers have unearthed a new gesture in the code.

The new gesture is codenamed “Columbus” and apparently it lets users double-tap the back to invoke certain functions. It has already been established that the feature works for launching the camera, waking Google Assistant, silencing calls, snoozing alarms and dismissing timers.

Thats not all, Android 11 will also allow users to customize the gesture with the help of feature “Performing a user-selected action.” In other words, you can set the gesture to perform the desired functions. The best part is that the feature can be activated in any device that comes equipped with a gyroscope and accelerometer.

While the feature seems innovative there are very high chances of false activation. However, Google has tackled this by using a number of other triggers to distinguish between actual gesture and accidental activations. As per the code, the “Columbus” feature is likely to be a Pixel exclusive. I feel the feature will be Pixel exclusive for a couple of months and then will trickle down to other devices. We have seen this happen with other Pixel exclusive features in the past.

Android 11 comes with new features, enhanced security, conversations section for notification and features that take advantage of 5G. This time around Google has released the first preview early in the year.

[via XDA-Developers]