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Google app reveals improved controls for Pixel Buds

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It looks like you’ll finally be able to double tap to skip songs

Pixel buds
Pixel buds
Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge

Google’s Pixel Buds smart headphones may be getting new enhancements that include customizable gesture controls, according to an analysis of code in the latest beta edition of the Google app, reports 9to5Google. There are potential new customizations for double tapping on the right earbud (which has a touch sensor), new functions for triple tapping, and also an in-ear detection feature that can pause your music when you remove the right earbud.

Currently, double tapping the right earbud allows you to listen to notifications or stop Google Assistant. The code reveals a possible new option to customize the gesture to skip songs — a feature that’s frustratingly missing, as we noted in our review. Triple tapping would allow users to manually turn the earbuds on and off, which would be useful, given that there is no way to turn the earbuds off until they’re placed back in the case. According to the code, the in-ear detection mode places the earbuds into sleep mode when the right earbud is removed and wakes them again when you place it back. The code mimics Apple’s AirPods which already have customizable taps and automatic ear detection.

The Pixel Buds currently allow users to reject or answer calls, activate Google Assistant, and control volume and audio playback using gestures. There’s no indication of when or if these new features will be available, as the code is still in beta and might be pulled before the next app release.