Google Announces Android Wear, Its Line of Android Smartwatches
Moments ago, Google announced that its popular mobile operating system, Android, is coming to your wrist in the form of wearables. Yes, Google is now officially getting into the smart watch race, and its doing it through a program they’re calling Android Wear.
The slogan of Android Wear is “information that moves with you,” indicating a device that keeps the data and services you want instantly at your fingertips, taking the smartphone somewhat out of the equation.
Features, apps and services on Android Wear devices will provide you the information you’re most commonly after, such as posts and updates from social apps, chat messages from your “preferred messaging apps,” as well as weather, news, and sports updates.
The “Ok Google” functionality that Google has been rolling out to Android and Chrome-enabled devices recently will also be more instantly available on your wrist. You can ask your watch direct questions like “what’s the Syracuse score,” or even dish out commands to send a text, call a taxi to your location, or set an alarm.
Certain wearables will also monitor your health and fitness performance, such as tracking your running or cycling speed, time and distance, and possibly, like the Samsung Galaxy S5, your heartrate through a sensor.
Android Wear devices can sync up with other devices right from your wrist, Google says, allowing you to “fire up a music playlist from your phone, or cast your favorite movie to your TV.” This functionality is available at the developer level, so any apps could make use of this tech.
If you are an Android developer, you can now download a developer preview that helps you tailor your existing apps for watches that are part of the Android Wear line. Google says that most apps will “already work well,” due to Android’s “rich notification system.”
But who’ll be manufacturing these watches of the future? According to Google, several manufacturers including Asus, HTC, LG, Motorola and Samsung; chip makers Broadcom, Imagination, Intel, Mediatek and Qualcomm are already on board, as are fashion brands like Fossil Group.
Android Wear will launch later this year.
Update: LG Announces LG G Watch
LG has just taken the opportunity to announce its watch in Google’s Android Wear lineup, the LG G Watch. No hard details were released about any differing functionality or features, but the above image was — and showcases a really slick, modern design.
Update: Motorola Unveils the Moto 360 Smartwatch
Motorola has unveiled its ambitious attempt at the wearable device, and they’ve dubbed it the Moto 360. This is the second watch to come out of the woodwork since this morning’s Android Wear announcement, and it features a round, all-metal design. It’ll be out later this summer.
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