Nov 18th, 2011

Google has been awarded a couple of patents you may like. First is the pattern-based unlock screen where users can draw a custom pattern to get to their homescreen. This light security feature has been in Android for a long time and it’s good to see that Google is protecting it.

More interesting than that are patents for the same idea but with extended functionality. Imagine drawing a custom gesture on the lockscreen that would bring up a certain lockscreen widget if successful. The use case Google uses in their original patent filing suggest a schedule of your calendar events, though many other things could be possible too.

That feature isn’t in Ice Cream Sandwich and we’re not sure if it every will be, but it’s nice to see that Google has both the idea and the patent. And honestly, we can’t imagine this sort of feature won’t come at some point down the line. Take a look at the description of the patents Google won below. [via 9to5 Google, thanks Dean!]

General lockscreen unlocking

A lock screen view is displayed on the mobile device to prevent unauthorized and inadvertent access to the mobile device’s data. While the mobile device is locked, a touch gesture having a pre-defined shape is detected on a touch screen of the mobile device independently of the initial position of the touch gesture on the touch screen.

New lockscreen gesture actions

In response to detection of the touch gesture, a particular action is executed on the mobile device while the mobile device stays locked. The particular action determined according to the pre-defined shape. In this way, detection of the touch gesture causes the particular action to execute while keeping the mobile device locked.