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FaceOff 7 is the sensor-based equivalent of Activator for iPhone
Tuesday, 28 January 2014
When the Moto X was announced last year, I was admittedly somewhat jealous of its various sensor-based contextual awareness and voice recognition features. In layman’s terms, the handset is one of the more interesting Android smartphones on the market to say the very least. But as someone that has been a loyal iPhone user for several years, it wasn’t quite enough to make me jump mobile platforms.
Thankfully, a new package has arrived on Cydia that allows me to experience the best of both worlds…
We cover a lot of jailbreak tweaks here at iDownloadBlog, but only every now and then does one come along that is so profoundly interesting as FaceOff 7 proves to be. If you’re familiar with Activator by Ryan Petrich, this is a similar action-based tweak by iOS developer Elijah Frederickson — and one that deserves more than a quick glance. FaceOff 7 is packed with several actions that can be triggered by performing a simple task like placing your iOS device upright or putting it in your pocket.
The tweak has a virtually endless number of options that can be configured through the Settings app, one of them being pocket detection. When toggled on, this feature uses the accelerometer and proximity sensor to detect when you place your iOS device in your pocket. If you want to go one step further, another toggle can be enabled that causes the device to automatically lock while it is in your pocket. When you take it out of your pocket, it turns back on. You can even set a delay of between 1 to 60 seconds before the screen locks or wakes.
You also have the option to enable FaceOff when your device is face up, meaning that it will turn off when placed screen-up on a flat surface. I tested this by laying my iPhone next to the trackpad on my MacBook Pro, and the screen shut off as expected. When I picked the phone up to use it again, the screen conveniently turned back on. The only downside is that iOS does not prompt you to reenter your passcode, which could lead to the security of your device being compromised. Thankfully, there is a toggle to disable overriding the password.
Before I go any further, I must clarify one thing: while I highly recommend giving this tweak a try, it isn’t perfect. The sensitivity, which can be adjusted, can be overpowering at times, causing your device to turn on and off haphazardly or flicker when you take it out of your pocket.
But it’s hard to pass up on the abundance of features this tweak offers, including a number of toggles that enhance its functionality even further. For instance, when your device is locked in your pocket, FaceOff 7 can be configured to automatically enable Do Not Disturb mode, Airplane Mode, auto-lock, mute or vibrate.
iPad users should not feel left out of the excitement either, as FaceOff 7 is fully compatible with the magnetic Smart Cover accessory. If you have a jailbroken iPad, do me the honors of testing this feature for me and share your experience in the comments.
Other options included are mostly for fine-tuning purposes: disable proximity in landscape, only enable proximity on AC power, disable on AC power, disable in call and disable in apps. The latter allows you to block FaceOff 7 from functioning inside of certain apps.
How does this affect battery life? Good question. In the few hours that I tested this tweak, I did notice that my battery was draining faster than usual. This is partially because, by default, a toggle is enabled that disables system sleep. This means that FaceOff 7 prevents the iOS system from sleeping, so that it can continue running and using the accelerometer and proximity sensor. Thankfully, this is a feature that can be turned off to improve your battery life situation. Still, expect higher drainage with this tweak installed.
FaceOff 7 is easily one of the coolest implementations of the accelerometer and proximity sensor that I have seen in the jailbreaking community. The useful tweak, compatible with all iPhones, iPads and iPods running iOS 7 or later, is available on the Cydia Store for 99 cents. Touch ID is not supported.