There are plenty of leaks related to Google's unreleased Pixel 4 XL and Pixel 4 handsets, and even Google has gotten in on the action—the company teased an image of the devices and posted a short clip briefly demonstrating the face unlock feature and Motion Sense gesture controls. As it relates to the latter, there's a video (not by Google) that shows some of the settings and specific gesture controls users will have at their disposal.
The gesture controls appear to be born out of Google's Project Soli platform, which it has been developing for the past few years. If so, the Pixel 4 series will have advanced object recognition capabilities. It's not clear to what extent accurate 3D imaging will be featured in the new phones, but certainly gesture controls will figure prominently into the equation.
Brandon Lee from the This is Tech Today channel on YouTube posted a video roundup of the various leaks related to the Pixel 4. At around the 12min59sec mark, he focuses on gesture controls and the Motion Sense settings. It's sort of an expansion on Google's previous teaser video, as we get to see exactly what will be possible.
For example, a Pixel 4 owner will be able to skip music tracks or move to the previous song with a wave of the hand. These actions are part of the quick gestures in the Motion Sense menu, as is the ability to silence interruptions (snooze an alarm or silence a phone call). I could see these gestures being particularly handy when eating—nobody wants to touch their smartphone display when their fingers are full of chicken wing sauce.
There's a separate section titled Ambient Display, within the Motion Sense section. As part of this, there is a "Reach to check phone" feature. This allows users to hover their hand over the Pixel 4 to view the lock screen, which indicates the time and notifications.
One thing that will be interesting to see is how Google handles the privacy angle. After all, you probably don't want just anybody being able to wave their hand over your phone to potentially see your notifications. Perhaps facial recognition will play into the experience, but we'll have to wait and see.
The Pixel 4 line is expected to be announced a hardware event in October. So, stay tuned, folks.