Google’s keynote presentation came with an huge announcement of Android Wear, the mobile platform that will power all of Google’s wearable devices. The first operating system made exclusively for smartwatches.
OnTapping on the main home screen activates voice actions, as does saying ‘Okay Google” when the screen is on. You can send texts by speaking out a message or using canned ones such as “Yes,” “No,” or “On my way.” You can’t add your own prewritten response, the way you can on Samsung’s previous watches. Android Wear also lets you send and receive emails and read Facebook notifications.
You can swipe up and down to move between notifications. Some notifications will have additional information which can be accessed by swiping to the right. The watch offers the types of notifications for local weather, birthday reminders and scores for your favorite sports teams. Once you’ve seen a notification, you can swipe to dismiss it and it will vanish from your phone’s lock screen as well.
Other voice commands, such as “play some music,” will play a song on your phone, but the controls will be displayed on the wearable device. Android Wear will also allow you to display a QR boarding pass at airports in case those pesky paper boarding passes were too much hassle for you.
Android Wear advances smartwatch technology is in navigation by giving turn-by-turn directions on the watch. The watches can also keep track of your daily steps, and Samsung’s has a heart rate monitor. These tasks and the clock functions are about all you can do without the phone nearby.
Just as with Google Glass, Wear also need its own companion app to work. You need to download the Android Wear app on your Android phone and pair it with the watch via Bluetooth, things start ticking. Just be warned, unless your phone is running Android 4.3 or higher. It Available in two smartwatches out within the next week.
It’s shaping up to be as fashionable as it is functional thanks to support for both round and square watch faces, as seen on the circular Moto 360 and boxy LG G Watch .Android Wear isn’t quite there yet as a must-have product, but we need to wait to see what it will evolve into in the months and years ahead.