Google Could Bring Back Lock Screen Widgets With Android 15, But There’s A Catch

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For the longest time, Android has had a plethora of customization options available, widgets being one of them. People use several widgets daily to access helpful information on the home screen without opening different apps. While home screen widgets provide utility, lock screen widgets offer convenience. 

Regarding lock screen widgets, Google allowed adding one until Android 5.0 came out. However, the company is bringing back the feature in Android 15 (with a catch). The feature, returning to the ecosystem after almost a decade, might be available on tablets, not smartphones.

Lock Screen Widgets On Android 15 For Tablets

With the latest Android version, users will be able to set up lock screen widgets on their tablets. However, according to a report by Android Authority, they won’t be able to place them directly on the lock screen. Instead, widgets will appear on the second lock screen when users swipe inward from the right edge of the screen.

However, when it comes to smartphones, Google will adopt a different strategy. The same report mentions how the company will integrate widgets (based on RemoteViews API) into Android’s “At-a-Glance” feature (based on Smartspace API). This will allow an Android 15 smartphone to show widgets from third-party apps in the At-a-Glance section. 

Android lock screen widgets visualization
Android lock screen widgets visualization by Android Authority

Google Might Integrate Third-Party Widgets Into At-a-Glance 

However, Google will encounter some challenges in doing so. For instance, the developers must ensure that the widgets fit in the space designated for the At-a-Glance feature. Further, if a widget crashes while shapeshifting into the At-a-Glance section, it could crash the entire lock screen. Last but not least, more manufacturers would need to include the At-a-Glance feature in their smartphones.

Further, the position of these widgets on the screen is also important. Currently, Google shows At-a-Glance information at the top of the screen (below the date and time). However, the company is testing placing the widgets at the bottom of the screen, below the fingerprint scanner icon. While this could be a potential position for the widgets, it makes the lock screen feel more cluttered.

Google’s experimentation with widgets on the lock screen resembles Apple’s Live Activities feature. Nonetheless, the company still has some time before Android 15 goes official and could change its plan.

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Shikhar MehrotraShikhar Mehrotra
A tech enthusiast at heart, Shikhar Mehrotra has been writing news since college for an undergraduate degree in Journalism and Mass Communication. Over the last four years, he has worked with several national and international publications, including Republic World, and ScreenRant, writing news, how-to explainers, smartphone comparisons, reviews, and list-type articles. When he is not working, Shikhar likes to click pictures, make videos for his YouTube channel, and watch the American sitcom Friends.

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