Saturday October 19, 2019
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Unlocking Android Phones With ‘Ok Google’ Ends

For Google's phone and tablet users, this will mean both a loss of functionality and a significant gain in terms of security

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Google assistant
This was despite the fact that some of Google Home users did not even say the wake word, "Hey Google". Wikimedia Commons

Google is getting rid of the ability to unlock your phone with Voice Match and the “Ok Google” command in a new update to the Google app further securing the system.

The search-engine giant has decided to limit the “Voice Match” unlock feature to only launch the Assistant interface on the lock screen instead of unlocking the Android device on the basis of voice match.

“Moto Z” and “Pixel XL” devices had already lost the functionality with the Google app’s 9.27 update.

With the 9.31 update, other devices that still had continued to have full voice unlocking powers, will also lose it, Engadget reported on Friday.

Previously, with an “Ok Google” command and question, the device would unlock the screen to the app concerned.

Google Assistant
Google Assistant. (IANS)

From here on users will have to unlock their devices to go beyond just personal results like Google Calendar, email, reminders and shopping lists.

Google had already chosen not to include the “Unlock with Voice Match” feature when it launched the “Pixel 3” and “Pixel 3XL”.

At the CES 2019, the company announced just days ago that it would also be doing away with the feature on all Android devices, the report said.

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This step would safeguard phones from anybody, who could try to barge into the device on the basis of a similar voice or a recording of the user’s own voice.

For Google’s phone and tablet users, this will mean both a loss of functionality and a significant gain in terms of security, the report noted. (IANS)

Next Story

New Google Pixel 4 Face Unlock Works even if Eyes are Closed

Google claims that the Pixel 4 Face Unlock meets the security requirements as a strong biometric and it is one of the most secure face unlock solutions

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Google Pixel 4
The US based search engine giant was so sure about its Face Unlock's security that the company had removed all the fingerprint sensors from the Pixel 4 handsets. Pixabay

 Google has recently launched its latest Google Pixel 4 series smartphones with face unlock for biometric authentication in New York. But this feature comes with a major flaw, as it could unlock the phone even if users were not looking at it.

According to BBC reporter Chris Fox, the face unlock mechanism works even when the device owner has his eyes shut. He tried this with different users and the same thing happened.

“The Pixel 4 facial recognition works even if you’re asleep/dead. That seems problematic #madebygoogle #pixel4,” Chris tweeted along with a video.

The US based search engine giant was so sure about its Face Unlock’s security that the company had removed all the fingerprint sensors from the Pixel 4 handsets.

Google seems to be aware of the problem, stating on a Pixel 4 help page that: “Your phone can also be unlocked by someone else if it’s held up to your face, even if your eyes are closed. Keep your phone in a safe place, like your front pocket or handbag.”

Google Pixel 4
The Google Pixel 4 comes with a starting price tag of $799 and Pixel 4 XL for $899. The phones will ship globally from October 24 (Representatinal Image). Pixabay

Google claims that the Pixel 4 Face Unlock meets the security requirements as a strong biometric and it is one of the most secure face unlock solutions.

The Google Pixel 4 comes with a starting price tag of $799 and Pixel 4 XL for $899. The phones will ship globally from October 24.

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In terms of specifications, Pixel 4 features a 5.7-inch Full HD+ Smooth 90Hz display. The Pixel 4 XL, on the other hand, comes with a 6.3-inch Quad HD+ Smooth 90Hz display.

Both the devices are powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 chipset. (IANS)