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New free app brings Samsung’s ‘Smart Pause’ functionality to iPhone

Smart Pause iPhone App

Anticipation reached Apple-like levels head of Samsung’s (005930) Galaxy S4 unveiling last month, and one feature in particular generated a good amount of hype. Though early reports incorrectly stated that “Smart Pause” utilized eye-tracking to automatically pause media when a user looked away from his or her phone, the new feature still achieved the same result using facial recognition technology. While Android fans will have to wait until the end of April at the earliest for the Galaxy S4 to launch before they can check out the new Smart Pause feature, a new free app lets iPhone users enjoy similar functionality today.

Cube26 on Tuesday released a free iPhone app called LookAway Player, which functions as a portal into YouTube with a twist. Users can search for and watch YouTube videos just as they can with any other YouTube app, but LookAway Player adds two interesting features that showcase the startup’s technology.

The “LookAway” function uses facial recognition to automatically pause video playback when an iPhone user turns his or her head away from the handset, and the “Shh!” feature mutes audio when the user makes a “shush” sound.

“The intent behind lookaway or Shh! is to bring Natural Vision Control aspect of Cube26’s technology,” Cube26 co-founder Saurav Kumar told BGR in an email. The company is also working on gesture recognition technology for home entertainment devices.

LookAway Player is free and is available in Apple’s (AAPL) App Store immediately — it can be downloaded by following the source link below. Several screenshots of the app can be viewed below as well.

Zach Epstein

Zach Epstein has been the Executive Editor at BGR for more than 10 years. He manages BGR’s editorial team and ensures that best practices are adhered to. He also oversees the Ecommerce team and directs the daily flow of all content.

Zach first joined BGR in 2007 as a Staff Writer covering business, technology, and entertainment. His work has been quoted by countless top news organizations, and he was recently named one of the world's top 10 “power mobile influencers” by Forbes. Prior to BGR, Zach worked as an executive in marketing and business development with two private telcos.