During this year’s CES, Google showcased its Watch Unlock feature, which is essentially just another way to unlock your phone apart from the fingerprint scanner or the face unlock. The feature relies on an existing Active Unlock API baked into Android 13. And according ti AssembleDebug, the feature might be close to launch.
After meddling with some low-level system flags, AssembleDebug was able to pull out a tutorial video in the settings menu of the Pixel watch to see how the Watch Unlock feature works. From what we could gather after no fingerprint or face has been introduced to the handset, it will look for your Wear OS device nearby for permission to unlock the phone.
You can tap on a notification or swipe up on the lock screen to unlock the handset in case your fingers are wet, dirty, the face unlock isn’t working or it’s disabled. Of course, your watch should be on your wrist and close to the phone.
We don’t know why Google is holding off this feature, given that it works on Android 13-based API. Maybe developers needed time to iron things out and it will be introduced with Android 14. Alternatively, Google is waiting to introduce the new functionality alongside the Pixel 8 series and Pixel Watch 2.