Android Wear Gets an Update; Includes Emoji Drawing, Wi-Fi Support and More

Discussion in 'Android News' started by dgstorm, Apr 20, 2015.

  1. dgstorm

    dgstorm Editor in Chief
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    It looks like current and future Android Wear devices will be getting some cool new abilities. Google just announced a new Android Wear update that boosts the capabilities with several new features. A few of them will work on existing devices, but one will require future devices with the proper hardware built in. Here's what Google added:
    • Always-on screen, always-on apps
    • Wi-Fi support
    • Simpler, faster, and more smiley
    Obviously, the Wi-Fi support requires there to be a Wi-Fi radio present in the hardware to function. The other two upgrades seem poised to make current devices even better already. Still, the Wi-Fi support is pretty exciting. The idea that you will be able to use your Android Wear smartwatch even if you forget your smartphone, is pretty handy.

    Check out the Google blog for all of the juicy details: Official Google Blog Android Wear wear what you want get what you need

     
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  2. bsweetness

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    I know the Sony Smartwatch 3, Moto 360, and LG G Watch R are all WiFi capable. Other Android Wear devices that have already been released might also have WiFi hardware that will be able to take advantage of the WiFi support in this update.

    Edit: It appears that the LG G Watch R is not WiFi capable.
     
    #2 bsweetness, Apr 20, 2015
    Last edited: Apr 24, 2015
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  3. Sydman

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    Can't wait for this one, sucks when my watch disconnects because I walk away from my desk and leave my phone behind.
     
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  4. Jonny Kansas

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    Given that the consensus seems to be that my G Watch doesn't have wifi built-in, I'm looking most forward to drawing emojis. If you're supposed to be able to say "Tongue out smiley" or something similar to get it to put one in, I've never had luck with that, but, on the watch especially, sometimes it'd be nice to just toss an emoji out there. Even better that you can doodle it real quick rather than telling your watch to "Send poop to fiance".

    Also interested in the tweaks that have to do with apps. I read somewhere that apps are supposed to "be easier to launch" with this update.
     
  5. FoxKat

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    Been confirmed by me both yesterday and earlier that the 360 has Wi-Fi N.
     
  6. bsweetness

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    Yeah, I had read months ago that the 360 had WiFi capabilities, which is why I said I know it is WiFi capable in my post above. Motorola officially confirmed it for the first time yesterday when they announced that the WiFi features in the next update would be coming to the 360: Moto 360: It’s time for an update
     
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  7. FoxKat

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    Correct and I posted that last night in another thread.
     
  8. Sydman

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    So, I might need to ask a stupid question here. Is this just an update to the Android Wear App? Or the Android Wear OS on the watches as well?

    I got the update for the Android Wear app last night, and I see the new WIFI feature in my settings, however, is this not going to work until my watch gets updated?
     
  9. Jonny Kansas

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    I believe that's right. I read somewhere that Google said that it'll be up to OEMs to unlock their wifi radios and get them to play nice with the update. So I'm assuming you'll need to wait on an OS update to actually take advantage of the functionality.
     
  10. Sydman

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    I thought so, just making sure. I noticed my watch didn't seem to be disconnecting like it usually does when I walk away from my desk, just making sure.
     
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  11. bsweetness

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    According to Sony, there's some other functionality coming with the new update that Google didn't mention:
    • Pop-up notifications: "Much like your Android smartphone, the new Android Wear update will bring pop up notifications (even when you’re looking at something else), meaning you’ll never miss anything important."
    • Adjustable font sizes: "New adjustable font sizes will let you can see more or less of the text on-screen."
    I suppose it's possible that both of those are custom for Sony's Smartwatch 3, but given that Google has strict rules on what OEMs can customize with Wear, I'd venture to say that those features will be a part of the standard update.

    Source: What the upcoming Android Wear updates mean for your SmartWatch 3… (Sony)
     
  12. thunderbolt_nick

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    Did Android Wear always have a Handwriting keyboard like Google just released for regular Android? If that's not so, I'm guessing that's why Google decided to go ahead and release the HW keyboard for us all.
     
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