Smartphone security is a necessary evil. Considering the personal information our phones hold, it’s always good practice to use a security method of some sort. Screen lock is a security feature that requires a password, pattern or PIN to unlock a device. On newer phones, like the LG G6 and Galaxy S8, you can also use your fingerprints.

Sometimes, however, you don’t want to go through all that hassle to get into your phone. You just want to check your Facebook and respond to some emails. And anyways, you’re at home; you live alone and there’s nobody around to jack your phone. This is where Android’s Smart Lock feature comes into play.

WHAT DOES SMART LOCK DO?

Smart Lock allows you to temporarily bypass your screen unlock according to scenarios you define. These scenarios include:

  • On-body detection
  • Places
  • Devices
  • Faces
  • Voices

Now, you know a little more about Smart Lock, so let’s take a closer look at these scenarios.

ON-BODY DETECTION

 

On-body detection does exactly what it implies. It detects when your phone is on your body, and prevents it from locking when it is. After your first unlock, your device stays unlocked as long as it’s in motion. This is perfect for you folks who’re always on the go, especially if you’re constantly on your phone.

Yeah, it only takes a second to unlock your phone, but those seconds add up when you open your phone 100+ times a day. When you’re busy, every second counts.

 

TRUSTED PLACES

Trusted places comes in handy for when you’re at a location you visit often. You can add multiple locations, such as your home and workplace. You can also manually set a location using the Google Maps search bar. Places you select have a small radius in which your device “trusts” its location, unlocking your screen until you leave said location.

Those of you with jealous spouses or friends who like to “hack” your Facebook, be aware. Your phones is now 100% vulnerable when you’re at a set location with Smart Lock on. You can override this by manually locking your phone, if you want to keep out prying eyes.

TRUSTED DEVICES

Smart Lock can also unlock your phone when it has an active Bluetooth connection to another device. I love this feature, because it’s offers a bit more control than trusted locations. You can set your phone to unlock when it connects to your smartwatch, and then it automatically locks when your phone leaves your watch’s Bluetooth signal range.

You can set your car as a trusted place, as well, if it has Bluetooth. This is especially handy when you’re driving, because it lessens the chances of distraction. Obviously, you shouldn’t use your phone while driving, but this makes it slightly less dangerous, if you absolutely must.

TRUSTED FACE

Trusted face uses facial recognition to unlock your device. Keep in mind, face matching is less secure than a PIN, pattern, or password. The reason being, someone who looks like you can use it to get into your phone. I don’t use this feature, so I honestly don’t have much to say about it. There are certainly more secure methods out there, but feel free to use trusted face if it’s your cup of tea.

TRUSTED VOICE

If you use, “OK Google”, chances are you already have this feature on. If not, you can turn on trusted voice in your Smart Lock settings, or in the Google app itself. Similar to trusted face, this lets you unlock your phone using the ‘Ok Google’ hotword. Again, there’s always the chance that someone who sounds like you can access your phone, so be weary here, too. I use this one, but I hope there’s never a time I end up regretting it.

WHERE DO I FIND SMART LOCK?

You can find Smart Lock in your phone’s settings. The exact location may vary by device, but it’s in the lock screen settings on the LG G6, and likely there on most other modern phones. Switch the toggle to the on position after you’ve set everything up, and you’re good to go. So, there you have it, folks. You now know now to temporarily nix your screen locking features with Smart Lock.

Are you using Smart Lock? Let us know why or why not in the comment thread below.

Tony Simons
Tony is an avid tech enthusiast with a love for all things Android. He has an award-winning sense of snark and sarcasm, spends too much time at his desk, and can usually be found avoiding the general public. He's also a firm believer in the 5-second rule.
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