As at last month, a new feature called “Columbus” was exposed when Google released the Android 11 Developer Preview.
This feature allows users to double-click the back of the device to do various things such as launch the voice assistant, open the camera application, and more.
After the release of Android 11 Developer Preview 2, there are hints that the feature has been tested in Pixel 3 XL, Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL.
On top of that, Google added two new operations to the “Columbus” gesture: taking a screenshot and entering the multitasking interface.
The Columbus feature does not require any unique hardware to work, it rather uses sensor data from the device’s accelerometer and gyroscope to determine if the user has double-clicked the back of the device.
In order to reduce power consumption and misuse, these double-tap gestures have a “door” that prevents them from starting in some cases (for example, when the screen of the device is off).
The new double-tap gesture operation supports the following features:
- Off timer
- Open camera
- Start Google Assistant
- Play / pause media
- Collapse status bar
- Silent incoming calls
- Pause alarm
- Unpin notification
- Perform”user-selected action”
- Take Screenshot
- Go to the multitasking interface