[Android] Screen turning off while you’re reading? Keep it on with SmartStay ExSeptember 17, 2012 1 Email article | Print article
Many people enjoy reading things on their tablets and cell phones. There’s an issue with this: if you take too long, your screen will turn itself off! Samsung solved this problem in the Galaxy S III. The S3 takes a photo with your front facing camera, and if it detects a face, it doesn’t turn the screen off. There’s an issue with their implementation too. For one, it requires you to have a Galaxy S III, which most people don’t. SmartStay Ex brings this cool feature to every and all device with a front facing camera for the low, low price of free.
Probably the most important thing to note about SmartStay Ex is that it requires a device with a front-facing camera. It uses it to detect faces. Every 30 seconds, it snaps a single photo, and if it detects a face, it’ll keep the screen from turning off. Otherwise, after two failed photos, it’ll turn off the screen. This allows you to continue to use the automatic screen-off feature, but in a more controlled way.
On some devices, SmartStay Ex doesn’t work properly due to bad cameras or poor lighting. For that, you can upgrade to SmartStay Ex. Among other things, it allows you to set the camera to take a video rather than a picture. This means that there’s a higher probability of getting a picture with a face properly detected. The Pro version also lets you make the device vibrate when it detects you, and get rid of the annoying notification bar icon.
SmartStay Ex, while really just a copy of the Galaxy S III’s Smart Stay, is a cool app that shows off what Android can do. It’s certainly convenient for those that have front facing cameras, and is free with an inexpensive Pro version.
Price: Free with $2.43 Pro version
Requires: Android 2.3+
Download size: 663KB