After a lot of waiting and patience, the second version of Google’s wearable OS – Android Wear 2.0 – is finally official. It comes with a lot of new features added to the OS, like the support for the Digital Crown, Google Fit support, Google Assistant, GPS, Android Pay, LTE and a lot more.
Android Wear 2.0 will make your smartwatch a standalone device letting you perform almost every feature you do on your smartphone.
So let us discuss some of the important features of this new wearable OS in detail.
Customizable Watch Faces
Android Wear 2.0 gives users the flexibility to customize the watch faces as per their needs and convenience. This includes changing the background colors, besides many other things.
Moreover, this new wearable OS lets you even personalize actions from several apps like speed-dial contacts, calendars, stock exchange trackers, and other things.
Android Wear 2.0 has the always-on Watch Faces feature letting you can have two different faces on your home screen just like on your smartphones.
Google’s fitness Assistance – Google Fit
This fitness tracking feature from Google comes pre-installed and can track the distance, pace, calories burned and heart rate for several activities. However, note that for the heart rate function to work, your smartwatch needs a built-in heart rate monitoring sensor.
The Google Fit, fitness tracking feature also offers some exercise guidance in the form of “challenges.” This includes the “Squat Challenge” or the “Push-Up Challenge.” Users are shown animations of the exercise form, and the motion sensors will monitor your activity.
Superior Connectivity Options
Android Wear 2.0 OS also offers cellular connectivity options and allows the smartwatch to run independently in the standalone mode.
Besides this, the smartwatch can have different connectivity options like Bluetooth, GPS, Wi-Fi, LTE and NFC (of course with a built-in NFC chip). Google says Android Wear 2.0 holds the ability to select the best connectivity options available automatically.
Also, the watches come with Google’s Play Store, meaning you can directly download Android Wear apps to your smartwatch, wherein most of them being compatible with Android handsets and iPhone.
With simple navigation features, Users can select between multiple watch faces by swiping right and left. Swiping up will take you to your notifications and swiping down brings you to the Settings options. A long press on the central button will launch Google Assistant while a simple tap on its will open the list of apps.
Android Wear 2.0 comes with “rotational” input that can be used with a digital crown that you can spin or a watch bezel, which you can swirl.
Android Pay and Google Assistant
With support for NFC, Android Wear 2.0 allows users to make payments via Google’s Android Pay payment method. The setup is simple wherein a credit card is added via the phone that is later authorized to become a virtualized number.
There is also support for Google Assistant. To activate this feature, you need to press and hold the side button on your smartwatch.
However, note that the Google’s Assistant for your smartwatch is a bit tweaked as compared to that for Pixel handsets or Google Home. Here you don’t get voice feedback even with speaker enabled smartwatches.
Google Assistant allows you to pair in with the Chromecast or Google Home device and control your home as claimed by Google. Apart from this, you can do several voice requests like finding restaurants, finding appointments, checking the weather, set alarms and much more.