Google I/O 2021: Google, Samsung team up in an attempt to make Wear OS better, here’s what’s coming
There were enough rumours about how the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 series might come with Wear OS instead of the proprietary Tizen. Now we know for sure, Google and Samsung have officially teamed up to make Wear OS better.
Google and Samsung collaborating is nothing new. But this time it's happening for Wear OS. The two companies are coming together to bring the best of Wear OS and Tizen onto a single, unified platform. Announced last evening at the Google I/O 2021 event, the main idea behind this partnership is to create faster performance, longer battery life, and also give users options for more apps on their wrist.
As Google announced, the teams have been collaborating to make apps start upto 30% faster on the latest chipsets and also make user interface animations and motion smoother. “To achieve longer battery life, we’ve worked to optimize the lower layers of the operating system – taking advantage of low-power hardware cores to enable better battery life,” Google explained. This includes optimisations like the “ability to run the heart rate sensor continuously during the day, track your sleep overnight, and still have battery for the next day”. The unified platform will also make it easier for developers to build better apps and watch faces.
Google is also working on getting “things done” faster from your wrist with shortcuts to important functions like going back to the previous app and also better customisations for the home screen carousel with more app options.
Google Maps and Google Assistant are being redesigned and improved to work better on the watch and Google Pay is also going to be redesigned and will get support added for 26 new countries. YouTube Music will also arrive on Wear OS later this year, equipped with features like smart downloads. Google is also bringing in Fitbit’s features to make health and fitness tracking better.
New tools like Tiles API and watch face design editor built by Samsung will make it easier for developers to build apps for the Wear OS platform and new and rebuilt apps like Strava, Adidas Running, Bitmoji, etc are coming to the platform.