To put it briefly, Google Smart Lock is a tool that lets you get around lock screen verification on a variety of devices—including Chromebooks and Android smartphones—without sacrificing security. However, it goes a little bit beyond that.

In this article we’ll explore what Google Smart Lock is, how to use Smart Lock on your device, and which Google Smart Lock settings are most and least secure. Let’s get into it!

What Is Google Smart Lock?

Google Smart Lock is not a single but a suite of products aimed at improving ease of use across different devices. This includes Smart Lock for Android, Chromebook, and Passwords:

  • Smart Lock for Android: With a number of methods, including Trusted places, Trusted devices, Trusted face, Trusted voice, and On-body detection, Smart Lock for Android allows you to configure your devices to remain unlocked based on your personal preferences and security needs.
  • Smart Lock for Chromebook: This feature enables you to have your Chromebook automatically unlock when your Android cellphone is in close proximity to it.

Related: How to Unblock Websites on a Chromebook

  • Smart Lock for Passwords: This feature simplifies password management by storing and syncing passwords across devices via your Google Account. It allows you to enable auto sign-in for websites and apps on both PCs and Android devices without having to remember passwords. 
Google Smart Lock for Passwords is now deprecated, meaning it is no longer actively supported or receiving updates.

In general, Google Smart Lock seeks to strike a compromise between user convenience and security by providing easy access to accounts and devices and by putting in place a number of authentication techniques and encryption measures to protect private data.

How Does Google Smart Lock Work?

By eliminating the need for repeated authentication, Google Smart Lock improves the user experience while guaranteeing device security in trusted settings. Its security-preserving versatility and ease make it an invaluable tool for Android users.

For instance, when Smart Lock senses continuous motion, as occurs when a user is carrying the device, or while it’s in an authorized area, such as home or the workplace, it can keep the device unlocked. Users can also specify trusted devices, such as Bluetooth accessories, which, when connected, keep the device unlocked.

Now, let’s dive deeper and explore Google Smart Lock features more thoroughly.

Google Smart Lock Features

Google Smart Lock comes with a number of useful features to improve Android device security and the user experience, including:

  • On-body detection: This feature detects motion and keeps your smartphone unlocked while you’re on the move.
    “ While being somewhat convenient, this feature is pretty vulnerable as it doesn’t see the difference between who carries the device, meaning anyone could get access to your gadget if it’s lost or stolen.”
  • Trusted places: With this feature, you can specify certain locations, like your home or workplace, as trusted places where your gadget will remain unlocked.
    While setting up trusted places can make your life a bit easier, your gadget will be easy to access if left unattended there or if someone knows these trusted places.
  • Trusted devices: This feature allows you to pair your smartphone with another Bluetooth device, like a smartwatch, and to keep it unlocked when it’s close to this device.
    It may be handy to connect a trusted Bluetooth device, but if both your phone and Bluetooth gadget are lost or stolen, someone could easily access your phone.
  • Trusted face: Some devices support face recognition technology, which unlocks your device when it recognizes your face.
    Facial recognition offers both convenience and security, as it provides a biometric authentication method that is really hard to replicate. However, this feature is not supported on all devices.
  • Trusted voice: This feature, if supported by your device manufacturer and Android version, allows you to unlock your phone with your voice, typically through “Hey Google” detection.
    Although voice recognition is useful for hands-free operation, it might not be the most secure option, as someone can record or imitate your voice and potentially get access to your phone.

As you can see, each Google Smart Lock feature comes with a certain degree of convenience, but also with varying levels of protection. We’d place the Trusted face feature on the top position in terms of both convenience and security, and leave the On-body detection one on the last place due to its vulnerabilities in case the device is lost or stolen.

How to Set Up Google Smart Lock

Now that we know the answer to the question, “What is Smart Lock on Android?” and how it works, let’s find out how to set it up on Android devices and Chromebooks.

Setting up Smart Lock on Android devices

  • Open Settings: Go to your Android device’s Settings app.
  • Navigate to Security: Scroll down and select “Security,” “Security & location,” “Security & lock screen,” or similar from the settings menu.
  • Find Smart Lock: Look for the “Smart Lock” option.
    On some devices, you might find Smart Lock under “Privacy,” “Lock screen,” or “Screen lock.”
  • Enable Smart Lock: Tap on Smart Lock to enter its settings, then toggle the switch to enable it.
    You may need to authenticate with your device’s security method (PIN, pattern, password, fingerprint) to access Google Smart Lock settings.
  • Choose Smart Lock options: Depending on your preferences and device compatibility, select from Smart Lock options such as Trusted places, Trusted devices, Trusted face, Trusted voice, and On-body detection.
  • Turn on On-body detection: Activate On-body detection to keep your device unlocked while it’s on you.
  • Configure Trusted places: If using Trusted places, add locations where you want your device to stay unlocked automatically.
  • Connect Trusted devices: For Trusted devices, pair your Android device with Bluetooth devices like smartwatches or headphones.
  • Set up Trusted face or voice: If supported, configure Trusted face or voice recognition for unlocking your device without entering a PIN or pattern.
What Is Google Smart Lock_ Features and Settings Guide
  • Review and confirm: Review your Smart Lock settings to ensure they meet your preferences and confirm any changes made.
  • Exit Settings: Once configured, exit the Settings app. Your Android device is now set up with Google Smart Lock.
The specific location of Smart Lock settings and available options may differ slightly based on your device’s manufacturer, Android version, and any customizations applied by the device’s interface (e.g., Samsung One UI, Google Pixel Experience).

Setting up Smart Lock on Chromebooks

Before starting, ensure that your Chromebook and your phone are connected to the Internet and have Bluetooth enabled. You also need to be signed in to the same Google Account on both devices.

  • Open Settings: Click on the time in the bottom-right corner of your Chromebook screen, then select “Settings.”
  • Navigate to Connected devices: Under the Settings menu, find and select “Connected devices.”
  • Select Android phone: Locate and select your Android phone from the list of connected devices.
Android connected devices
  • Enable Smart Lock: Toggle the switch to turn on Smart Lock for your Chromebook and Android phone.
Connected devices smart lock
  • Authenticate: If prompted, follow any on-screen prompts to authenticate your action.
  • Unlock Chromebook with phone: After setting up Smart Lock, unlock your Chromebook by unlocking your Android phone. Simply click or tap your avatar on the Chromebook login page after unlocking your phone.
You can access Google Smart Lock settings on Chromebook and select whether you want Smart Lock to only unlock your device or sign in to your Google Account as well.
Smart lock unlock device only

How to Turn Off Google Smart Lock

If you need to turn off Google Smart Lock, the process is simple for both Android and Chromebooks.

How to disable Google Smart Lock on Android devices

  • Go to your Android device’s Settings app.
  • Depending on your device manufacturer and Android version, select “Security,” “Security & location,” or “Security & lock screen” from the settings menu.
  • Look for the “Trust agents” option. 
  • Click on it and turn off the toggle switch for Smart Lock.
Android connected devices
  • Toggle the switch to turn off Smart Lock for your Chromebook.
Connected devices smart lock

Google Smart Lock: Explained

In this article, we’ve covered all aspects of Google Smart Lock. Now you know the answer to the question, “What is Google Smart Lock?” and how to set it up, how to access Google Smart Lock settings, and how to turn Smart Lock off if you no longer need it.

However, always remember that the convenience that the feature brings may come at a price of reduced security, as Google Smart Lock doesn’t guarantee you full protection, especially if someone gets hold of your device.

Did you like the article? Do you have any additional tips on the topic? You are most welcome to share your thoughts and ideas in the comments below.


Google Smart Lock is generally considered secure. However, we recommend using additional security features in addition to Smart Lock for total safety and peace of mind.
Google Smart Lock is compatible with Android smartphones running 8.0 and later. That said, particular functionality could vary based on device compatibility and manufacturer modifications.
As of 2022, Smart Lock for Passwords is no longer supported. It isn’t getting updates or active support anymore.
Google Smart Lock is compatible with other Google services, including Google Account sign-in and the Chrome browser autofill.