Mar 10 AT 7:03 PM Dima Aryeh 25 Comments

Always listening mode enabled on Nexus 5, unfortunately unreleasable

Moto X Touchless Control

The Motorola X8 chip isn’t the only one with always listening capabilities. Qualcomm decided to include a similar “core” in the Snapdragon 800, touting its always listening capabilities before its release. However, we haven’t heard anything about it since. Either Qualcomm has not given permission to manufacturers to use this core, or manufacturers have just had no interest.

However, there’s no way for a feature to go untapped in the developer community. A developer by the name of Guillaume Lesniak has figured out how to enable this core and use it to wake a Nexus 5 without using the main processor. All he has to do to wake the device is say “Hey Snapdragon.”

this is indeed using the dedicated audio processing chip of the S800 - that's the whole point of this PoC. The CPU is indeed turned off and isn't used at all for the audio processing.Guillaume Lesniak

However, he won’t be releasing this modification. He states that it is unreleasable for various reasons. It’s “far from being stable,” and I can assume that Qualcomm wouldn’t be happy with someone releasing this as well. For now, it’s just a proof of concept. And as a proof of concept, it’s awesome. I wish all Snapdragon 800 features could adopt Motorola’s Touchless Control, but considering that the CPU has now been replaced, it’s very unlikely.

Via: Droid-Life

Source: +Guillaume Lesniak

Dima Aryeh is obsessed with all things car and tech. His time is split between gaming and fixing his racecar. He also does photography in his spare time.

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  • uknowme

    Damn that would be awesome!

  • Alex

    Isn’t this enabled on the note 3 but with s-voice? But who really uses s-voice?

    • Dima Aryeh

      Yes, but it doesn’t use the Snapdragon 800′s ability to listen without firing up the processor as far as I know. Galaxy S III, Note II, and S4 have it as well. Kills battery significantly.

  • AvatarZ

    What’s the point of this if he’s just going to tease us.

    • Sam

      Like he said “proof of concept”

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  • donger

    Who knew.

  • awesome

    This would be amazing… Hope they figure out a way to enable this without getting in hot water

  • spaqe

    yeah hacker dude, your mother wasn’t happy releasing you and yet she did it anyway

  • Tony Morgan

    If they are going to release this feature on qi enabled Nexus 5 then the Smartphone market of Moto X will definitely get affected. And to avoiding this, they have decided to not launch this feature on Nexus 5. Well not an issue I am not using my Nexus 5 just because of this single feature as there are many other feature which I like the most in my device.

  • davis

    Yeah well, after some time it becomes annoying when the voice search activates if anyone says anything remotely close to ‘ok Google’ anyway…

  • Mix

    Would be SWEET for that one time you are driving and hit an icy patch of road, or an animal, and veer off into a ditch. Flipped upside down with the radio blasting, warm blood trickling down your face as you try to find your phone.

    “Hey Snapdragon”

    “Ok, Google, call 911″

    That shit could save your life.

    • Wolf

      Assuming your phone survived the crash as well…

    • jamal adam

      If this isn’t a good enough reason for him to release it, I don’t know what is.

  • kid2k

    Perhaps it’d be seen as a negative to have a phone that is always listening to your voice what with the NSA wiretapping everyone’s just found out about?

    • Deveron

      Actually, these “always on” chips are designed to only listen for key phrases. They completely ignore everything else.

      • Owais Iqbal

        But you do realise they have to process everything coming through the mic to look for keyword voice patterns.

  • renyo

    Just when Google fixed fragmentation in Android, they now the task of fixing fragmentation in between suppliers, manufacturers and them!

  • freddy

    So someone got this working on our N5 and just teased us with it ? Y didn’t u just keep it to yourself Instead of showing off… I wouldn’t doubt I’d this is bullshit/fake ,he won’t release because of Qualcomm ?,that’s all actual dev’s do is hack code and piss off phone makers . I call bullshit !

  • the motto

    The dedicated audio chip is used for other stuff om the nexus 5, mainly audio play back meaning that the phone can play music without the ned to fire up det main applications processor. Please do you homework.

    • Dima Aryeh

      I’d be glad to update the article if you provided a source.

  • kkk2pp

    The only reason it is not enabled in the phone is that Google didn’t pay for the feature.
    There are some Chinese phones have it.

  • Dawagiv

    Guillaume Lesniak! Why don’t you ask Qualcomm directly? If unreleasable, why Qualcomm included this chip in the QC800?

  • sunny boy

    When is google going to release this touchless feature for their flagship NEXUS 5