Google Pixel 4’s Motion Sense gestures should actually work in 53 regions and with 23 media apps
Last year’s Pixel 3 might have earned the award for the “most leaked smartphone in history,” but the Pixel 4 is getting really close to dethroning its predecessor. A large number of the Pixel 4 leaks have been related to its software, thanks to the numerous leakers who shared the new apps online. The new Pixel 4 live wallpapers, Pixel Launcher, Google Recorder app, and Google Camera app have been made publicly available, but other APKs from the new Pixels have also leaked. Thanks to Nextrift, we got our hands on a pre-release APK for Motion Sense, Google’s name for the Soli radar gestures, and it reveals which countries and media apps are supported.
A little bit of context here is required for those of you who haven’t kept up with all the leaks lately. Google has been working on radar tech it calls Soli for a few years now. Soli is capable of precise hand gesture detection, which Google is using to power its Motion Sense gestures for skipping songs, snoozing alarms, or silencing phone calls on the Pixel 4. Soli is insensitive to light and can work through plastic materials as it operates at the 60GHz frequency. Because of this radio frequency requirement, Google needs to certify the Pixel 4 with the regulatory agencies of countries to be allowed to transmit radio frequencies in that range.
If Google hasn’t completed certification for the Pixel 4 with a particular country, then Motion Sense won’t work there. We’ve already seen a Best Buy landing page reveal that countries like Japan won’t be getting Motion Sense gestures, but last week, 9to5Google got their hands on the same pre-release APK as we did, revealing that the feature will work in 38 regions. They also found a list of 9 media apps that the gestures will support, which is disappointing because we were under the assumption that the gestures would send standard intents to change media tracks.
9to5Google discovered a list of supported countries and media apps within the APK for Motion Sense (package name “com.google.oslo.”) The list of supported countries comes from a method called “isAvailableInCountry” which checks the country code of the phone against a list of 38 MCCs (Mobile Country Codes.) The list of supported media apps was found in a class called “SkipMediaTrack” under a method called “isSupportedApp.”
However, through our own digging, we found a more complete list of regions and media apps that are supported by the Pixel 4’s Soli-radar powered Motion Sense gestures. In fact, we believe that at least 53 regions and 23 media apps are currently supported, not 38 and 9 as previously reported. That’s because the list that 9to5 found was hardcoded in the APK, which was pulled from a pre-release Pixel 4 XL. The list that we found was in an internal Google database used for controlling configuration values for its apps. The more complete country list comes from a config called “mcc_whitelist” while the more complete supported app list comes from a config called “media_app_whitelist,” both of which are for “oslo,” the code-name for Motion Sense. Since the APK comes from a pre-release Pixel 4 XL and this new list from an internal Google database, we believe our list to be more accurate since the APK could be outdated.
List of 53 Regions that Motion Sense should work in
- American Samoa
- Czech Republic
- French Guiana
- French Indian Ocean Territories (both MCCs are listed)
- French Polynesia
- New Caledonia
- Northern Mariana Islands
- Puerto Rico
- Saint Barthélemy
- Saint Martin
- Saint Pierre and Miquelon
- United Arab Emirates
- United Kingdom
- United States of America
- United States Virgin Islands
- Wallis and Futuna
In total, that’s 39 countries with 13 territories of the U.S. and France combined to make up the list of 52 supported regions, plus one since the French Indian Ocean Territories has two MCCs. The MCC list that 9to5 spotted only mentioned the U.S. Virgin Islands and American Somoa as supported territories, but our list expands on that by listing the MCCs of more territories. The most notable addition to our list is Australia, which Best Buy listed as being supported but didn’t show up in 9to5’s list.
There’s some skepticism about whether or not the Google Pixel 4 will actually be sold in all of these areas. We can’t confirm which countries the device will be sold in, and this list shouldn’t be taken to mean that the device will be sold in a particular country. This list only tells us which regions the gestures will be activated in, so if you’re connected to a network in an area that hasn’t been whitelisted, you won’t have access to these gestures.
List of 23 Media Apps that Motion Sense’s Skip Song Action works in
- Amazon Music
- Apple Music
- TIDAL Music
- Wynk Music
- Gaana Music
- YouTube Music
- Google Play Music
- Hungama Music
- 지니 뮤직 (Genie Music)
- 벅스 (Bugs Music)
- Napster Music
- Spotify Stations
- Deezer Music Player
We find it interesting that JioSaavn, Wynk, Gaana, and Hungama are listed despite India not appearing in the list of supported regions, but it’s possible Google is simply accommodating users who would use the apps outside of India. It’s also possible they’re planning on getting Motion Sense working in the country.
Thanks to a leak from This is Tech Today, we know exactly how the gestures will work. The skip track gesture works by detecting when you wave your hand left or right, the silence gesture works by detecting when you wave your hand over the phone, and the reach to check phone gesture works when you move your hand close to the phone.
Photo credits: M. Brandon Lee from This is Tech Today.
We analyzed the APK and can confirm that there aren’t any hidden gestures that haven’t been spotted yet, which is unfortunate because I was hoping that Motion Sense would be able to do more. Still, I’m sure someone on our forums will figure out how to customize or add new air gestures once the phone is released.
Thanks to PNF Software for providing us a license to use JEB Decompiler, a professional-grade reverse engineering tool for Android applications.