The Google Pixel 7a has a unique feature that makes vibrating alerts smarter and less annoying

Right now, the feature is exclusive to the Pixel 7a.

Pixel 7a in the hand

Pixel 7a in the hand

The Google Pixel 7a is an impressive device, being lauded for its features that not only go above and beyond its predecessor, but also goes toe to toe with one of Google's current flagships the Pixel 7. However, once you get past the beautiful cameras and impressive processor, the phone's software really shines, and it looks like the Pixel 7a is going to make vibrating alerts smarter and less intrusive going forward. A new vibrating alert option has been discovered in the settings called Adaptive alert vibration, which will allow users to set a new behavior for vibrating alerts when the phone is facing up and laying still.

Google Pixel 7a Adaptive alert vibration in the settings menu

Source: Android Police

The setting was spotted by Android Police while going through the new support document for the Pixel 7a. With this new setting, users will be able to change the strength of an incoming vibrating alert when the phone is face up. That means when the device is placed on a desk screen side up, it won't use the default vibration setting causing unwanted attention. If you own a Pixel 7a, you can head into the Settings menu, then jump to the Sound & vibration section, and access the toggle in the Vibration & haptics section.

The one caveat at the moment is that you won't be able to set a custom vibration strength. But this is a good start, because if we have the phone nearby, chances are we're going to see the notification come in with onscreen alerts, and a violent vibration might not be necessary. While the technology being used here is unclear, Google is most likely employing the use of the proximity sensor on the front, along with the accelerometer to determine when a phone is still and facing up. That means, even if this setting is enabled, you'll still get full vibration alerts when walking about, so you'll never miss call or text alerts.

As of now, it's unclear whether this feature will find its way to other Pixel smartphones, but one can only hope. Although the Pixel 7a is still fresh off its announcement at Google I/O 2023, the handset is already available in stores. The mid-range device is definitely one of the best available at its price, so there is a chance that it could take the top spot and become the best affordable Android smartphone in 2023. As of now, Amazon and Best Buy have the best Pixel 7a deals, offering a $50 gift card with purchase. Of course, it's also available from wireless carriers like T-Mobile, Verizon, and ATT.

Sea Pixel 7a on transparent background.
Google Pixel 7a

$449 $499 Save $50

A great mid-range phone that packs Google's flagship Tensor G2 SoC, excellent cameras, 90Hz display, and support for wireless charging.