By default, Android disables a phone's NFC antenna when the screen is off. This is implemented as a security measure to prevent potentially malicious data from being pushed to the user's device without their knowledge.
However, a video posted by Droid-Life confirms that Motorola's new Moto X can be unlocked by the Skip NFC accessory, even while the phone's screen is off.
The Motorola Skip is an NFC tag designed to be attached to a piece of clothing or bag, allowing the wearer to tap their phone onto the Skip to unlock the phone and bypass any lockscreen passwords. The accessory is being sold alone for $20, but also comes bundled with custom orders of the Moto X from the MotoMaker service.
Geak, a Chinese manufacturer, had also included screen-off polling in its Mars phone so that it could be unlocked with the Geak ring.
The Moto X is the first device to have been completely designed after Motorola Mobility became a wholly-owned subsidiary of Google. It is yet to be seen whether Google will now add native screen-off NFC functionality to a future release of Android.
Follow NFC Brief on Twitter to stay informed about the latest in NFC technology: