Reviews

SmartShift Lockscreen automates lock screen profiles based on time, location, or events [App Reviews]

April 2, 2012 | by Andrew Kameka

Android App Reviews, Reviews, Tools

smartshift

Aside from replacing the home screen, I really haven’t made any changes to my Galaxy Nexus. But the customizer and tinkerer within me can’t help but be intrigued by SmartShift Lockscreen, an Android 2.1 lockscreen replacement app that changes its features and appearance based on profiles created by the user.

SmartShift Lockscreen automates a device’s lockscreen appearance in order to suit your many needs. The app can be set to have a custom lockscreen that shortcuts to Google Docs, Gmail, Skype, and Calculator during work hours, or it can know to highlight the phone dialer, messaging, camera, and music players when you’re off the clock. Within each lock screen, users can choose a different skin or layout, and customize which icons, shortcuts, or widgets are displayed.

Another clever use for SmartShift is that it can display a different lockscreen when the phone is docked or headsets are plugged in. Naturally, I’d want my music controls to appear on the lockscreen whenever headphones are plugged in, and it’s possible to set up the app to do just that. And when the phone is plugged into a car dock, users can have shortcuts to Google Maps locations or unlock directly to drive-friendly apps like Vlingo. SmartShift can tailor the lockscreen for a safer driving experience, or it can change settings based on:

  • Time of day or day of the week
  • Location (via tagged cell towers)
  • Charging mode
  • Airplane mode

Aside from changing the lock screen, SmartShift can even tweak the actual settings of the device. A car-friendly lockscreen should naturally turn on Bluetooth and increase brightness, and a work mode can do without those features since you are indoors and have other communication methods. The ‘Situations’ that act as profiles for different lockscreens can also adjust settings for Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, screen brightness or timeout, and ringer volume/vibrate setting.

SmartShift Lockscreen costs $1.50 in Google Play and comes with two default skins. Users can purchase additional skins through a $0.99 in-app purchase, but the options aren’t very stunning visually. There’s also no way to build your own skin, but you can select your existing static wallpaper (not a live wallpaper) and can tweak the color settings. Though the set up process could use some improvements, the results speak for themselves. SmartShift Lockscreen is a convenient way to switch between lockscreen and phone profiles without having to press a single button.