Google could steal this iOS lock screen feature — here’s what we know

The prompt to customize the lock screen in Android 14
(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

Android 15 could reportedly take some inspiration from Apple regarding lock screen app support. This information comes to us from a report in Android Authority, which has reported Android 15 would include lock screen widget support for Google Tablets, but not on Pixel phones.

Instead, it seems Google will look to Apple’s iOS Live Activities feature for an idea of how to proceed. For those unfamiliar with Live Activities, it provides frequent information updates that appear in glanceable locations on your lock screen, like on the Dynamic Island. It allows users to easily track certain apps' progress without opening the phone. Google's variation has been revealed in a video which gives us an idea of how it will look. 

Google is supposedly working on bringing a similar feature to its At a Glance Widget by integrating the RemoteViews API used by Android Apps into the At a Glance Smartspace API. However, there are some issues, mainly that At a Glance does not have the space to show full-size widgets. The above video shows that At a Glance will pull up relevant information from the third-party widget and display it instead of the whole widget. 

Google Pixel 8 shown held in hand

(Image credit: Tom's Guide)

The other issue for Android users is that At a Glance is only available at full functionality on Pixel phones. If Google aims to expand then it will need to work with other manufacturers to expand the widget's availability and functionality. Is it currently possible to download the At a Glance widget on other devices, but the functionality is limited on the non-Pixel phones' home screens.

Google announced the Public Beta for its Pixel phones on April 11 and the update has brought several new improvements to the device, including other features hidden in the code. For instance, it was recently discovered that Google could allow users to force apps into a dark mode. For all the benefits, however, the update did bring some issues, with the initial version affecting NFC functionality however Google has released a patch to solve the issue.

This feature would be another quality-of-life improvement from an update that is already full of them. However, the feature still appears to be in the early stages of development, and it may not be ready for the initial Android 15 release for later this year. We will not know for sure until the Google I/O event next month. In the meantime keep an eye on our Android 15 hub for all the updates and rumors as we hear them. 

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Staff Writer

Josh is a staff writer for Tom's Guide and is based in the UK. He has worked for several publications but now works primarily on mobile phones. Outside of phones, he has a passion for video games, novels, and Warhammer.