Last year, when Google announced Android 4.0 Ice Cream Sandwich, one of the highlights of the operating system update was that one could unlock their handsets with their face using a face recognition mechanism called Face Unlock. This was a neat concept as opposed to punching in a code or using a pattern to unlock your device. However, this system did come with its security vulnerabilities as a person could unlock a handset with a photograph. A report by Android Central states that with Jelly Bean, Google aims to improve this unlock feature by adding a new option called Liveness check.

As per the report, a member of the Android Central forums, Jay2Kings, has discovered that within the security settings menu, a new feature of Jelly Bean, called Liveness check, aims to improve the Face Unlock feature. The author of the report, Richard Devine, states, “So, this is supposed to get round the potential picture duping issue by making it so Face Unlock will check for the person in front of it blinking. In other words, making sure you're alive. While it's good to see solutions for potential security risks, Jays2Kings also points out that it doesn't really pick up normal blinking too well. Seems that it works best when you have your eyes open really wide, and all it seems to do is to further slow down the process of unlocking your phone with Face Unlock.”

Activating at a breath taking rate

Liveness Check for Face Unlock discovered in Android 4.1 Jelly Bean

When Google unveiled Jelly Bean, they stated that this OS makes everything smoother, faster and more fluid and claimed that notifications are now more dynamic. When Google announced Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, the tech giant stated that this new operating system builds on top of Ice Cream Sandwich and this feature backs their statement. Elaborating on the new feature, Google stated that if one is late for a meeting or missed a call,  they can send an e-mail or call directly from the notifications list. With Android 4.1 Jelly Bean, Google claims that the keyboard is smarter and more accurate, and can predict the user’s next word. Another interesting feature is that voice typing is faster, working even when one does not have a data connection.

Google also stated that they have redesigned search from the ground up in Jelly Bean, with a new user interface and faster, more natural Voice Search. They went on to state that one can type their query or simply ask Google a question. Google can speak back, delivering a precise answer, powered by the Knowledge Graph, if it knows one, in addition to a list of search results.

Google claims, “Today’s smart devices still rely on you to do pretty much everything—that is, until now. Google Now is a new feature that gets you just the right information at just the right time. It tells you today’s weather before you start your day, how much traffic to expect before you leave for work or your favorite team's score as they’re playing. There’s no digging required: cards appear at the moment you need them most.”

Let us know your thoughts on this new feature being implemented for Face Unlock and on Jelly Bean as a whole in the comments section below.

Tags: , , , , , ,