There’s no doubt that the Samsung Galaxy SIII is quite an impressive piece of hardware, but a lot of the device’s most touted features are actually software based. What that means is that, with a little bit of work, it is possible to get these same features without actually having to own a Galaxy S III. For example, Andreas has already shown how to get the SIII’s MP3 player sync, Pop Up Play feature, and Smart Alerts on other Android devices, and the S Voice apk has been taken out of the SIII ROM for installation on other devices. You can even make the Galaxy Nexus and some other Android devices look almost exactly like the Galaxy SIII with a simple .zip package.
Now, adding to the list of features no longer exclusive to the Galaxy SIII is a simple application called ISeeYou, which can be found in the Play Store. And when I say simple, I really do mean simple. This app does one thing only, and that is imitate the function of the Galaxy SIII’s SmartStay feature. In case you didn’t know, the SmartStay feature uses the front facing camera to keep the display on so that it doesn’t turn off automatically while you are reading something. It may seem trivial, but I know that I have gotten annoyed with the automatic screen timeout interrupting my reading many times before.
As you can see from the screenshot above, the application has an incredibly simple interface. In the free version, there are only two buttons, one to start and the other to stop the service, and a single checkbox to indicate whether or not the service should start at boot. The eyelash icon in the notification bar lets you know when the service is running, but that is really all there is to the app. The paid version gets you a whopping two additional settings, one to set the time between scans, and the other to set the maximum time the app will scan for a face before giving up. These are theoretically there to allow users better control over the battery, but in fact the default settings in the free version seem to work quite well.
Although I initially assumed that an app like this which uses the camera whenever the screen is on would drain my battery pretty quickly, I have actually been pleasantly surprised by the app’s performance. So far, I haven’t noticed any drastic battery drain, and the screen on feature seems to be working quite well. In the past, I used an app called Screebl to keep the display on based on the accelerometer, but it looks like I may have finally found a better replacement. It may be a very simple concept, but ISeeYou seems to be a well executed app that does exactly what it is designed to do quite well, and nothing more.
To download it, just use your Ice Cream Sandwich Android device and click the Google Play link below.
Download: Google Play