When you set up your Android phone with a secure unlock mode, it often means giving up app shortcuts. You won't have to make that sacrifice if Google implements a newly granted US patent, however. The technique lets device owners complement a basic pattern unlock with multiple customizable patterns that launch specific apps, such as the camera or dialer. It's a simple concept. The question is whether or not Google will ever use it -- when Android 4.3 still relies on a conventional pattern unlock, it's clear that the company isn't in a big rush.
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