Android 12 lets you control your phone with your face

Google is developing a new feature that allows you to control your phone just with your face.

This is part of an update to Google’s accessibility tools that were updated with the recently released Android 12 Beta 4.


According to XDA-Developers, facial expressions can be used to access a number of controls, ranging from scrolling, returning to the home screen, displaying quick settings and more. The images above show that you can adjust the sensitivity of the software when recognising expressions, which should limit the potential for accidental activations. However, there is a warning that the feature can be power hungry and phones should ideally be plugged in when in use.

This system of controlling an Android 12 phone with the face could be handy for people who have difficulty with touch controls for various reasons. And unlike voice commands, facial expressions are done silently. This could make the controls easier to use in public.

This new feature may not be reserved for Android 12 in any case – it is as it stands because it is in place with the fourth beta of the mobile operating system, but XDA notes that Google’s application of accessibility tools is backwards compatible with Android 11. So it remains to be seen whether Google will offer the same functionality on Android 11 and Android 12 when it becomes available in final release.