Microsoft's Next Lock Screen updated with fingerprint reader support and more

Microsoft updated its Next Lock Screen today with a number of new features to version 2.6. The firm promises that this is the app's biggest update to date.

Here's what's new:

  • Fingerprint Unlock (for devices with fingerprint scanner). While Next is on screen, use your fingerprint scanner to bypass the Next screen lock.
  • Smart Contacts. Next learns and displays contacts whom you’ve called or texted.
  • Smart Lock. Set rules for whether a passcode is needed when you’re at Home or Work.
  • Location-based wallpapers are back. Different wallpapers for Auto/Home/Work.
  • Bug fixes.

For those that aren't familiar with Next Lock Screen, it's a Microsoft Garage project and it's considered by many to be one of the best lock screens in the Google Play Store. Here is the list of features:

  • Custom unlock: protect your phone with a PIN or pattern code. Fingerprint unlock is available on hardware-supported devices. Smart lock based on location (home and/or work).
  • Notifications: view missed calls, text messages, and message notifications from apps like Facebook, Gmail and WhatsApp.
  • People: easily call or text your favorite contacts from the lock screen.
  • Apps: launch your favorite apps with our built-in app launcher.
  • Tools: quick access to the Camera, Flashlight, Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and more.
  • Weather: check the local weather with automatic updates.
  • Calendar: view your upcoming events, complete with time and location. Receive summaries on the meetings you have for today and tomorrow.
  • Music player: control your favorite songs and playlists. Next supports the most popular music apps such as Spotify, Audible and Pandora.
  • Wallpapers: choose your own image or from our gallery of photos. Select the Bing Wallpaper of the day to receive a beautiful new image on your screen every day.

With Next Lock Screen and Microsoft's Arrow Launcher, it's quickly becoming clear that the best Microsoft experience might just be on Android. As these products continue to mature, it becomes easier to imagine a world where Microsoft uses Android as its primary mobile operating system.

While we're still in the present, at least Next Lock Screen will now unlock when a fingerprint reader is pressed.

You can grab Next Lock Screen from the Google Play Store right here.

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