For all the ROM junkies out there, Paranoid Android is giving you another reason to abandon all other ROMs only to feel the sweet embrace of the newest PA4 beta. By this time you may already know about the tweaks they made to PIE to revamped it, but today they're giving us a whole new feature never before seen in any PA ROM. It's called Peek, and basically it'll allow you to access active notifications right from your lock screen without having to unlock the device, basically getting a peek at what just came in. Pretty sweet right? It gets better. With Peek, Paranoid Android knows when you're taking your phone out of your pocket, so it can wake the screen and show you a blip of notifications for you to access, just by tapping the corresponding icon. No having to unlock your display to reply to that incoming message from your parents, just tap the message icon that comes up through Peek and it opens right to messaging for you to respond.
Peek does this by listening for movement as soon as a notification comes in. So if you get an email and grab for your phone from off the coffee table, it'll notice the movement and pop up the active notifications. You'll have to pick up your device within 10 seconds to activate Peeks wakelock features, but that's more than enough time for the average user. If you wait longer than 10 seconds, the wakelock turns off and Peek is disabled until a new notification comes in, re-enabling it. Not only is Peek useful, but PA has also made it power smart. Peeks battery saving features were definitely not forgotten. With the way that Peek works, battery life could become a problem, that is if the PA team didn't think about that issue from the beginning.
For those that might be worried about battery and how this would affect it, Peek helps to save battery in a couple of different ways. To first understand the battery saving though, it's important to know how Peek knows what it knows. Peek works by using the gyroscope and proximity sensors within your device. The key here is, that Peek turns off both sensors while the screen is on. As soon as you turn your screen off after use, it starts to poll from both sensors so it'll know where the phone ends up. For example, if it detects that you set it down on a flat surface, it'll disable the proximity sensor, but if it detects that you shove it in your pocket, it'll disable the gyroscope sensor. So there is the first way that Peek helps you battery, sensors are disabled when the screen turns on, and then once you turn it off PA is already waiting to find out where you put your device so it can better serve in a more power efficient manner. The second way battery is helped is through the wakelock timeout which I talked about above. If you want to give Peek a test run and check out how cool it is, you can watch the video below thanks to the PA team, then you can hit the download link to get the latest beta version of PA 4 here.