On{X} for Android is Microsoft’s automation pet project

A team of Microsoft researchers in Israel has developed what they hope to be the Kinect of smartphone automation. Starting with an Android app released this week, On{X} plugs into a database of sensor-based APIs to create “recipes” that activate based on a given action.

For example, you can program your phone to open a weather app the first time it is switched on in the morning. More impressively, On{X} uses its own set of tools to determine when you’ve begun walking, and can automatically open your favourite music app.

These recipes are programmed on the project’s website — think IFTTT (If This Then This) for your smartphone — and are then synced to the app. You cannot yet create recipes on your phone, but that functionality is hopefully coming soon. One of the issues users are raising is that On{X} requires a Facebook account to log in, perceived sacrilege for an app launching exclusively on Google’s OS. Nevertheless it allows for instant push synchronization between the web and the smartphone, which improves the experience dramatically.

Microsoft hopes to bring the application to other smartphone operating systems, including Windows Phone and iOS, but Android was the logical choice to launch on because it is relatively open and does not have a mandatory sandbox for apps.

If you want to give On{X} a go and create your own recipes — or just use one of the many pre-made choices — head on over to Google Play. A demo video is after the break.

MobileSyrup may earn a commission from purchases made via our links, which helps fund the journalism we provide free on our website. These links do not influence our editorial content. Support us here.

Related Articles