What is Google Smart Lock? How does it work on Android and Chromebooks?


Have you ever seen someone take their Android phone and have it unlocked without a password, but when you try it there is a security measure in place? Well, Google Smart Lock is one feature that can be responsible for such behavior. While this isn’t the safest way to protect your device and its content, it does make it more accessible in specific scenarios. Under the Smart Lock banner, Google is showcasing three products – Smart Lock for Android, Smart Lock for Passwords, and Smart Lock for Chromebook, each aimed at making your life easier.

So basically, Google Smart Lock consists of features that allow you to quickly unlock and start using a device or logging into accounts with just a few clicks, thus avoiding having to remember a password.

Smart lock for Android

Smart Lock for Android consists of three options listed that you can use to keep your device unlocked.

  • Detection on the body: This method requires you to unlock your device once, after which it will stay unlocked until it thinks it has been kept on a table or somewhere far away from you.
  • Trusted devices: If you wear a fitness bracelet or maybe have other devices that use Bluetooth to connect to your phone, this option allows you to select them as a trusted entity. Your phone will no longer need a password to unlock when it is associated with these entities.
  • Trusted places: As an indicative of the name, thanks to this, you can set any location – ideally your home – as a place where your device can remain unlocked.
Google Smart Lock for Android on OnePlus 5

Smart Lock for Android activated Oneplus 5 under Android 10

Please note: Since Google Assistant Voice Match and Face Unlock features are available on most Android phones, they have been removed from Smart Lock and are only part of it on older models.

Smart Lock for Passwords

This feature allows you to quickly sign in to various apps by sharing the passwords saved in your account between devices. It works like Apple’s iCloud-based Keychain service or any other password manager.

Image featuring Smart Lock for password interface

Smart lock for Chromebook

Similar to Smart Lock for Android, this variant for Chromebooks will allow you to quickly log into your system, as long as your phone uses the same Google account.

For this feature to work, the linked smartphone will need to be unlocked, have Bluetooth enabled, and have a screen lock type (PIN, Pattern or Passcode) configured.

Are you already using any of these features? If so, let us know where and how you use it below.


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