How to Unlock Your Android Phone With Your Fitbit

Bluetooth devices you trust can be set to unlock your phone

When it comes to unlocking your smartphone, the PIN or passcode isn't the only option for security. With advances such as biometric-based security in Apple's Touch ID and later Face ID, the ways to unlock smartphones have expanded.

Android users also have new methods to secure and unlock their phones with more convenience, including the ability to unlock a phone with Bluetooth using a Fitbit.

Instructions in this article apply to Android 9.0 and Android 8.0.

Smart Lock for Android

Android users got quick unlock features when Smart Lock capabilities were introduced in Android Lollipop 5.0 OS. Smart Lock added several new locking and unlocking methods, and it also improved on the previous facial recognition feature offered in earlier versions of the OS. The Android 5.0 Smart Lock feature can use a trusted Bluetooth device's presence to unlock a phone.

Here's how to set up Android Smart Lock to use a Fitbit (or any trusted Bluetooth device) to unlock a phone.

These directions should apply no matter who made your Android phone: Samsung, Google, Huawei, Xiaomi, or others.

  1. Set a password or pattern for your device. If you need to set one for the first time, open the Android Settings menu, then go to Lock Screen > Screen Lock Type. For Android 8.0, select Settings > Security & lock screen > Smart Lock.

    If there is an existing PIN or passcode, enter it here. Otherwise, follow the instructions to create a new pattern, password, or PIN to secure your device.

  2. In the Screen lock type section, choose between Pattern, PIN, or Password for a Screen Lock.

    Using Swipe will not allow you to set up Smart Lock.

    An Android phone with the Lock Screen and Screen Lock Type options highlighted
  3. To use the Smart Lock feature with a trusted Bluetooth device, make sure that Smart Lock is enabled. Go to Settings > Lock screen > Smart Lock.

    You are prompted to enter your chosen Pattern, PIN, or Password before proceeding.

  4. To enable Smart Lock, select On-body detection.

    An Android phone with the Lock Screen, Smart Lock, and On-Body Detection settings highlighted
  5. Toggle the switch to read On.

  6. In the Keep in mind dialog box, select Continue.

    An Android device with the On-body detection, on switch, and continue buttons highlighted
  7. Select Trusted devices.

  8. Select the + (Plus sign) next to Add trusted device.

  9. Select your Fitbit.

    If you don't see your Fitbit, you may need to enable Bluetooth or re-sync the Fitbit.

    An Android device with the Trusted Devices, Add Device, and a Fitbit name highlighted
  10. Confirm the addition of your Fitbit as a trusted device by selecting Yes, Add.

Depending on the range of your phone's Bluetooth radio, someone nearby could access your phone if the device you paired it to for Smart Unlock is nearby.

Remove a Trusted Bluetooth Device in Smart Lock

When you no longer want to use the trusted Bluetooth device, turn off Smart Lock.

  1. Go to Settings > Lock screen > Smart Lock. For Android 8.0 go to Settings > Security & lock screen > Smart Lock.

  2. Enter your passcode and select Next.

  3. Select Trusted devices.

    An Android phone with the Lock Screen, Smart Lock, and Trusted Devices sections highlighted
  4. Select your Fitbit.

  5. Select Remove Trusted Device.

    An Android phone with the Trusted Devices, Fitbit name, and Remove Trusted Device commands highlighted

Allowing your smartphone to be unlocked with a Bluetooth device can increase the risk for unauthorized access. For example, if you're in a meeting in the room next door to your office and your phone is left unattended on your desk, someone could access it without a passcode because your paired device—your Fitbit, watch, or other paired Smart Lock-trusted device—is within range for it to unlock the phone.

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