Google App beta code suggests new biometric and machine learning capabilities
A new APK teardown performed by the XDA team on the latest beta of the Google App revealed new potential features, including locking incognito sessions with biometrics.
According to the forum developers, the code contained in the APK file hints at an option to enable biometric locking and unlocking for the in-app incognito mode Google introduced in January.
In other words, when browsing specific apps in incognito mode, the device would detect periods of inactivity and prompt a biometric authentication action to continue.
Google’s biometric efforts on Android continue after the company updated its built-in password manager to include biometric authentication in the autofill feature in August.
More recently, Google rolled out a new survey feature asking users to evaluate and describe the contents of photos in order to upgrade its image recognition algorithms.
Also in November, the Android company introduced privacy-preserving features in the Android’s Mobile Driving License framework, which rely on biometrics for authentication.
Additional potential features revealed by the APK teardown refer to disabling the ringing of Nest devices when users are not at a certain location and a new function to teach users how to pronounce words.
The XDA team clarified that the inclusion of new code by Google does not necessarily mean that these new features will be coming soon, or at all.
Still, the developers on the site will try to activate the new features manually in order to demonstrate them.