Android Lollipop AH-2

Trusted Places and Faces Added to Android 5.0 Lollipop’s Smart Lock Feature

November 18, 2014 - Written By Nick Sutrich

Android 5.0 Lollipop introduced a ton of new features to stock Android, and many of them have been sorely needed for a while now.  Other features, like Smart Lock, are new additions that have only been seen on one or two other phones on the market and brings a key feature to all phones running Android 5.0 Lollipop from this point forward.  If you haven’t heard of Smart Lock yet here’s how it works: set up a pin or other security method to keep your phone password protected at all times, then setup a trusted method of unlocking the phone when you’re near.  This keeps the phone unlocked when you’re nearby and locks it when you’re not, keeping your information secure if you leave your phone somewhere or someone steals it.

Up to this point you could only use a trusted device, which is a Bluetooth-enabled device that pairs with your phone like a smartwatch or Bluetooth headset or speaker.  Now with the release of Google Play Services 6.5 a couple new features are being added to Smart Lock including trusted places and trusted faces.  Trusted places lets you choose a location to use to keep your phone’s security off, so when you’re at the designated locations for home, work or another place Google will keep your pin or other security feature turned off until you leave that place.  This is super handy for those who don’t have a Bluetooth device to trust all the time or would rather just have the security feature turned off at a specific place.

Trusted Face is just what it sounds like; a way to add your face to the list of trusted things to turn the security off on your device when needed.  This uses the old face unlock feature that was introduced with Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich four years ago, but it makes it much more friendly than the old way.  Setting up Trusted Face is simple and requires you to register your face on the device.  Now when you unlock your phone you’ll be greeted either with your security code if the phone doesn’t recognize you, or the standard Lollipop lock screen if it does.  You’ll also know the phone recognized you when there’s a little face icon on the bottom of the lock screen, and of course when the security code has been disabled.