Google was working on a radically different “At A Glance” widget that never saw the light of day

Google was working on a radically different “At A Glance” widget that never saw the light of day

With the Pixel 6 series, Google introduced a redesigned At A Glance widget. The updated widget can show your calendar events, your flight boarding pass, workout stats, and more. But it appears, there was an even more powerful and smarter version of the At A Glance widget in the works, which unfortunately never saw the light of day.

According to a new finding by our friends over at Android Authority, Google was internally working on a radically different At A Glance widget. As you can see in the UI mock-ups below, Google’s vision was to integrate the widget into the lock screen and Always-on Display, going beyond the simple home screen integration.

XDA VIDEO OF THE DAY

Two smartphones showing At A Glance widget

Screenshots suggest that users would see a chip on the lock screen or AOD which, when tapped, would bring up various contextual suggestions and actions. For example, at bedtime, users would see a Good Night chip that shows toggles for controlling lights, thermostat reading, and cards for setting up an alarm, playing sleep sounds, and meditation sounds from Headspace. The idea here was to make it easier to perform daily tasks right from the lock screen without having to unlock the phone or dig into individual apps.

There was also a plan to provide smart context-based suggestions and deep integration with third-party apps and services. The attached screenshots show that when a user connected headphones, the widget would display media and calling suggestions, allowing users to play music from Spotify, listen to podcasts from Pocketcasts, or watch something from YouTube or Netflix. Similarly, if the user is at a store, the widget would bring up a shopping list, loyalty cards, barcode scanner, a Pay with G Pay shortcut, and coupons.

This At A Glance widget would probably have debuted first on Pixel phones, just like the current widget. However, Google also planned to share it with other OEMs, according to Android Authority. The report notes that Google began working on this feature during the Android 11 development cycle. However, it never made it past the prototyping stage.

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Kishan Vyas
Kishan Vyas

A loyal Android user since Android 2.1 Eclair. Direct inquiries to [email protected]

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