Depending on what you do with your phone, you might not want other unauthorized people to see notification contents on your lock screen. Android has got you covered – the feature to hide sensitive information first surfaced on Android Lollipop and has been with us ever since. In the recently released Q Beta 4, it has changed a bit – you can now only choose to hide sensitive content when your phone's screen is locked. If it's unlocked, it will simply show all notifications.

Left: Q Beta 3 is an all-or-nothing affair. Right: Beta 4 offers to show content when unlocked.

Along reorganizing individual notification settings and moving elements of the lock screen around in the latest beta, Google is also giving us a new way to hide content on the lock screen – we can now "Show sensitive content only when unlocked" along with the old options to show all content or not show any notification at all. Previously, we've also had three states, but the option to always hide sensitive content has been folded into the new choice in Beta 4.

This feature makes sense for those who use Smart Lock (which might be renamed in Android Q). For example, when you're away from a trusted place or when your phone doesn't recognize your face, you don't want all notification content to show up on your lock screen in case someone took a quick glance and found something private. But when you're home or when your device knows it's you looking at it, there's really no need to hide notifications. You simply need to wake your phone up and you'll see all notification content.

  • Thanks:
  • Nick Cipriani