The Moto X phone has an ingenious feature which allows you to require a pin or pattern lock, and yet have the phone persistently maintain an unlocked status when it’s in proximity of a bluetooth device that you’ve marked as trusted [see more details on this official Moto X help page]. I believe the Droid Maxx, Droid Ultra, and Moto G also have this feature.
Unfortunately, Motorola only offers an NFC unlock widget — the Skip — and that’s less convenient, because you have to physically touch your phone each time to it to unlock.
Therefore, many of us have been seeking convenient and reliable bluetooth device options that’d work with the Moto X. To this end, I’ve done lots of digging and asking around, and below I’m maintaining a list from my discovery :). But first, I want to give major props to this thread from the great AndroidCentral forum and the helpful users who’ve posted in it, especially “Distorted Loop” who already started a list in this post.
Community says these devices work!
- Misc old-skool bluetooth clip: Just found and tried out a small pocketable bluetooth headset clip thing (that you connect your own headphones to), and it works like a charm! No idea how often I’d have to charge it, tho.
- Well, not quite like a charm :(. As designed, it intercepts phone calls and media audio; you can turn one or the other off in the phone settings, but turning off both severs the pairing :(.
- Insight LBT505
- Ford Sync
- Pretty much any bluetooth headset (but see my caveats above!)
- iHome BT wireless portable wireless speakers
- Cobra tag: Though it does have to be charged every 2-7 days.
- Zephyr HxM BT heart rate monitor
- Sony smart watch 1st generation
- Google Glass
- iDiagnose OBD2 device (only works in cars 1997+)
These are likely to work (confirmed by company representative, etc.)
- Gecko – From the company: “[…]it appears that gecko can be a trusted device for Moto-X. Regarding the mode of connection, it stays connected all the time when the phone is in BT range. Even if it goes out of range, (where the range can be set for Near, Medium, Far) then it will be disconnected and it will again re-connect if the mobile comes back in range. The re-connect is automatic.” [Dec 23, 2013]
Won’t work 🙁
- Chipolo – Just tested on Mar 4, 2014, and, alas, my Moto X doesn’t recognize it as a bluetooth device, which means I can’t mark it as a trusted device :(.
- If I delete the app, my phone recognizes it as a bluetooth device, but when I attempt to pair it, it asks for the 4 digit pairing code; neither 1234 nor 0000 (typical codes) work :(.
- Kensington – Officially No: “[The] Proximity Tag model # 39771 will not work with Moto X. This unit is designed to be compatible with Samsung Galaxy S3, S4, Galaxy Note II, Note 8.0, Note 10.1.” [Dec 23, 2013]
- Pulse – I tried it, as did many others; since it only occasionally connects with the phone, this doesn’t work for our purposes.
- Basis B1 watch — Same issue as the Pulse :\.
- Fitbit — see Pulse and Basis above
- Pally – From the company: “Yes, our Pally Smart Finder had been tested to pair with Android 4.3+ devices and maintain a constant connection (for virtual leash function). Android 4.4.x turns out more stable, owning to the improvement on Android’s BLE stack. We will introduce an Android app in March 2014.” [Dec 23, 2013]
- I ordered this in late December 2013, and was dismayed to discover that it actually does not work currently with Android devices. Awaiting return/refund instructions from the company 🙁
- Desktop / laptop computers — Seems difficult/impossible to have them keep the connection going.
- Nexus One phone
- Panasonic VT50 Television set (has anyone found any TV that’ll work?)
- Insite LBL809 — Confirmed by company that this won’t work with the Moto X
Don’t yet know
- Elite (from IndieGoGo)
- StickNFind – Officially no: “Thank you for contacting us. We still working on android. The sticknfind when paired with your device enable you to set up the leash that will alert you when its out of range but unfortunately does not have the capability lock or unlocked your phone when its out of range. The sticknfind stickers use Bluetooth signal to communicate with each other.” [Aug 21, 2013]
- But some people think that it may still work, since the product supposedly works on devices supporting Bluetooth LE
Again, you may want to subscribe to this thread on AndroidCentral to get more details and see the latest (though I’ll try to update this page regularly as well… and if I’ve missed something, please don’t hesitate to leave a comment below!)
And lastly, an important disclaimer! I work for Google, but — despite Motorola being a Google company — I’m not affiliated with nor do I speak for the Motorola division in any way.
UPDATES: Beyond just adding items to the list, I’ve revised this post to add/edit the following…
– Added Moto G as phone which supports this feature [Dec 26, 2013]
– Clarified that the phone needs to initially be unlocked; this feature will itself not unlock the phone, it merely maintains an unlocked state [Dec 26, 2013]
Thanks for this! My laptop works great as a trusted device as well, just though i’d let you know.
Great to know, VSK! Curious to know what type of laptop this is and how you set things up re bluetooth pairing 🙂
its a Lenovo IdeaPad running Windows 8. I just turned on bluetooth and paired them, it asked me if I wanted to set it as a trusted device! The interesting thing is it works as a trusted device when they’re paired without actually being connected ( the bluetooth icon on my moto x stays faded out) Whenever I turn my laptop on they automatically pair!
One to add to the Successful list: iDiagnose OBD2 device (only works in cars 1997+)
I can personally confirm that this works – I have one in my car.
I’ve been able to confirm that while it occasionally drops its connection, TrackR does indeed work as a Trusted Bluetooth device.
VSK, Sean, a belated thanks for the info (I’ll go ahead and add the iDiagnose OBD2 to the post now).
Ken, thanks! I’ll also add the TrackR.
Thank you for sharing this. I searched everywhere to see if anyone else had a similar issue with the FitBit not staying connected as a trusted device. I couldn’t find anything until I came across your post.
You’re very welcome, Emma! Quite happy to hear this post was helpful for you!
I have tested “XY-findit”. It can be paired, and added it as Trusted Device, but the device is always marked as “not connected”. Therefore, I cannot used it to keep my Moto X unlocked.