Google has started rolling out the Wear OS updates as promised, with the H-MR2 based on Android 9 Pie reaching a small set of wearables. Back in August, we had reported that the Wear OS platform hadn’t changed much and that Google had finally broken its silence.
An update on the Google Support page says the latest updates would make the Wear OS faster, enhance the pairing process and most importantly improve the battery life of the wearables. “These updates and more will be rolling out on Suunto 7 devices first, and to more manufacturers in the coming months. Please check in with your device manufacturer for more details regarding the rollout,” the post said.
A post on the Android Developers blog last month has revealed that the next major update on the Wear OS would focus on enhancing performance and power of these watches. In fact, Google was visibly silent on this topic and even went missing during the Google I/O 2020 keynote.
With the latest update, Google says the Wear OS smartwatch would launch and boot up 20% faster while the drive controls would make it easier for users to switch modes and workouts. The company noted that through enhancements in the pairing process, users would be able to speed up the wearable’s pairing.
However, the most important update that we believe could benefit the Wear OS is purported enhancement in battery life of the devices. Google’s post claims that users would now be able to do more through the day on the wearable, given the extra battery life. However, the post does not mention how much additional juice the update would end up adding to devices through optimization of the software.
In terms of availability, the Wear OS fall update would be rolling out to more devices in the coming months. However, Google has made no mention of when the rollouts will speed up and when it would be completed for all manufacturers.
However, the company has not brought up two updates that it had spoken about in the Android developers blog last month. One was a hand-washing timer as a response to Covid-19 and the other was an hourly breakdown of local weather reports and bad weather alerts.
The other improvements that were detailed include new Snapdragon Wear 4100 and Wear 4100 Plus chipsets, which move to a 12nm level that can potentially improve the processing power by a whopping 85%. A report on 9to5Google said they had installed the update on the Suunto 7 watch but could not find any of the promised system-level featured that were detailed last month.
Is it that Google has once again gone after incremental updates as it did in the past? These updates hadn’t really addressed several issues that plagued Android devices for several years now.