Google giveth, and Google taketh away. Nexus/Pixel buyers know this too well - from little-used features like lockscreen widgets to more interesting fare like wireless charging, a lot of things have showed up in one Nexus phone only to disappear in the next. The Pixel and Pixel XL, for example, are missing some of the ambient notification tools that debuted with the Nexus 6. But as usual, there's a developer willing to fill in the gap. Check out Ambi-Turner if you want some of those features back.
In the free version, Ambi-Turner enables the ambient notification screen when your phone detects that it's been taken out of a pocket or flipped over, whether or not there are new notifications (when it displays by default). It's a big boon to those who like to see their current notifications at a glance without using the power button or fingerprint scanner.
For 99 cents Ambi-Turner unlocks all its features. These include a battery bar, a wave-to-wake gesture (customizable with the number of waves), and "tilt-to-wake." Other settings enable a "pulse" in the style of older Motorola phones, which periodically shows the ambient notification screen for a few seconds. This is particularly handy if you use a desktop stand or car dock charger, and it allows users to select which apps activate the pulse mode.
Take note: it looks like Ambi-Turner will install on any Android 6.0+ phone or tablet, but even though root is not required, it might not work for devices with heavy manufacturer skins. It's designed to work only with the default AOSP ambient display.
- Sean Hunter,
- Feroz Yacoob