One of the features that didn’t make the feature list of the 2014 Motorola Moto X handset is the “double chop flashlight” command, which surely must be inspired by Austin Powers. Back in November when Android Lollipop was released for the later generation Moto X, Verizon Wireless did say that the double chop motion command would be coming. Alas, it didn’t appear but it has turned up with the update to Android 5.1 Lollipop, which we reported was being soak tested just the other day. And by “double chop,” the hand movement is exactly as it sounds: holding the handset in the hand, simply make two a Judo Chop movement. Saying it is optional; the movement alone will trigger the flashlight from the double rear-mounted flash unit. And whatever you do, hold on tight!
The double chop movement is a part of Moto Actions, which already includes support for a Jedi Knight like hand waving over the screen to silence calls and alarms, twisting the device to activate the camera and putting your hand close to the device in order to trigger Moto Display and hence show the notifications waiting for you. These functions may be enabled or disabled from the Moto X’s settings application under “Actions,” and Motorola use the Google Play Store infrastructure in order to keep this application up to date. Because of this, I am expecting other Motorola devices to acquire this ability in due course. Motorola’s clever use of gestures to at first seems a very small way of using the device but over time, quickly become second nature and are soon missed if you switch to another device.
Along with the double chop flashlight change, the Moto X will benefit from a number of other improvements to Android 5.1 Lollipop including Device Protection, which is a means of stopping people from using your device if it has been stolen without access to your account password. This should discourage smartphone theft. There are also changes to the WiFi and Bluetooth quick settings icons to simplify connecting the device to a wireless network or Bluetooth device, too. And finally, we have the ubiquitous performance, stability and battery life improvements that seems to come with every software update.