Control your Pixel without touching it

If you have a Pixel 4, your phone can recognise if you’re nearby using Motion Sense. You can use gestures to do actions quickly with your phone without unlocking the screen.

Motion Sense isn’t currently available in Japan, but is coming in spring 2020.

Important: If Battery Saver or Aeroplane mode are turned on, Motion Sense is turned off.

Use Motion Sense on Pixel 4 (UK) | Pixel

Turn Motion Sense on or off

  1. On your Pixel 4, open the Settings app.
  2. Tap System And then Motion Sense.
  3. Turn on Motion Sense.

When Motion Sense is on and active:

  • You’ll sometimes see a light blue glow at the top of the screen. This glow shows you that a quick gesture is available, or that you just used a gesture.
  • Motion Sense can tell when you’re nearby, but not who you are.
  • Motion Sense isn’t a camera.
  • All Motion Sense processing happens on your phone. Sensor data isn’t sent to Google.

Tap here to see an interactive tutorial

Do actions quickly with quick gestures

Silence interruptions

You can wave across your phone to snooze an alarm, turn off a timer or mute a call.

  1. Set an alarm, set a timer or get a call.
  2. When it goes off, wave your hand once across your screen.

Waving across your phone won’t turn off the alarm or decline the call. Instead, your phone snoozes the alarm, silences the call or makes the sound quieter when you reach for your phone.

Skip songs

You can wave across your phone to skip a song or go back to a song that you just played. This gesture works with most music apps, and still works if the app isn’t open or your screen is off.

  1. Play a song on a music app.
  2. To skip to the next song, wave your hand over the phone from left to right.
  3. To go back to the last song, wave your hand over the phone from right to left.

Change quick gestures settings

Turn on your screen when you’re nearby

You can get your phone to show the time and your notifications when it senses that you're nearby.

  1. On your Pixel 4, open the Settings app.
  2. Tap System And then Motion Sense.
  3. Under 'Ambient display':
    • To awaken your screen when you reach for it, turn on Reach to check phone.
    • To keep your screen awake when you're nearby, turn on Show display when nearby.

Start or stop silencing interruptions

  1. On your Pixel 4, open the Settings app.
  2. Tap System And then Motion Sense.
  3. Tap Silence interruptions.
  4. Turn Silence interruptions on or off.

Change swipe direction or stop skipping songs

  1. On your Pixel 4, open the Settings app.
  2. Tap System And then Motion Sense.
  3. Tap Skip songs.
    • To change swipe direction, tap Swipe direction.
    • To turn off, tap Skip songs.

Fix problems with quick gestures

If quick gestures aren’t working:

  • Remove your phone case or screen protector. Use a case or protector that doesn’t block the top of your screen.
  • Turn off Motion Sense, then turn it back on. Find out how to turn Motion Sense on or off.
  • Turn your phone off, then turn it back on.
  • Check that you’re in a country where Motion Sense is approved. Currently, Motion Sense will work in the US, Canada, Singapore, Australia, Taiwan and most European countries. If you travel to a country where it’s not approved, it won’t work.

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