A post on Google+ blew up after the developer of a popular custom ROM showed off a proof of concept where his Nexus 5 effectively mimicked the always listening “Touchless Control” function found in the Motorola Moto X. How exactly was this done, you ask? No witchcraft, just a little Android knowledge.
Still in its early state, Guillaume Lesniak was able to tap into Qualcomm’s QDSP6V5 low-power DSP core found in the Snapdragon 800 processor. Because this is separate from the cores used for handling applications, in theory, this would have a minimal impact on battery life, keeping the main CPU in a sleep state as usual.
Although Qualcomm has yet to release any of the Snapdragon 800’s always listening APIs to developers (we could never figure out exactly why), they sure had no problem boasting about this specific feature of their SoC. It’s a shame we haven’t really seen it in action, until now.
Because this is still very much “unofficial,” and the developer is attempting to avoid drama with Qualcomm’s legal department, he’s holding back from releasing any details on how it was done. For now, we can find solace in knowing that it has been accomplished (however buggy), and that there’s still a glimmer of hope this feature may find itself in a future version of the OmniROM custom Android software.
Who knows, maybe Qualcomm is keeping their cards close to their chest for a future Nexus device, or even Android release. Why should the Moto X have all the fun?