Microsoft is currently developing a number of new gestures for Windows Phone that allow owners to interact with devices without ever touching the display. While some "3D Touch" gestures were due to debut with a second update to Windows Phone 8.1 this year, Microsoft canceled its update plans and is now providing some of the gestures as a separate download.
Four new gestures that help with phone calls
A new Gestures Beta app is available today for Lumia Windows Phone owners, and it lets you control phone calls in a lot of different ways. If you install the app you’ll be able to answer calls by simply picking up a Lumia phone and putting it to your ear, and you’ll also be able to mute yourself by placing your phone face down on a flat surface. If you want to ignore a call you can flip the phone so it’s face down, and simply placing a phone on a flat surface will put the call into speaker mode. All of the gestures can be toggled on and off, but Microsoft notes some of them will be limited on the Lumia 630, Lumia 635, and Lumia 530.
Microsoft is still planning to include some additional 3D Touch features in Windows 10, alongside a new "MixView" that lets users hover over a Live Tile to explode the tile into a number of small sections that are relevant to a particular app. It’s possible that this Gestures Beta is simply a test version of some of the gestures that Microsoft will build directly into Windows 10 for phones, and the company can solicit early feedback before its future mobile OS is ready next year.