Sat. May 18th, 2024

The release of Wear OS 3 marked a big change in Google’s smartwatch strategy. Wear OS watches were now actually good, something which couldn’t be said of most products on the market before that point. It also helped the OS grow its userbase much further, with many people buying the improved product. Like Android, Wear OS is seeing yearly major releases, and now, the next big version of Wear OS is here—say hello to Wear OS 5.

Google has announced the launch of Wear OS 5, the latest version of its Android-based smartwatch OS as well as the successor to Wear OS 4. The new operating system is based on Android 14, so it’s not the latest and greatest Google has to offer, but it’s still pretty recent. For what it’s worth, the new update is a bit more of a “polishing” update than anything, compared to Android 15, which does come with a bunch of new features. One important optimization is the fact that we now have new battery optimizations that, Google says, will allow for things such as outdoor marathons or training sessions consume 20% less power. We’ll have to see how this will result in an improvement to battery life, if it does at all, but for now, it seems promising.

Google is also introducing new features for creating watch faces with a renewed version of Watch Face Format, their recommended method of making watch faces for Wear OS 4+. The update includes, among other things, “flavors” or preset configurations for easier user customization. We also have new types of complications like “goal progress” and “weighted elements” for displaying various data, and watch faces can also access current weather conditions and forecasts. We’re also getting other improvements such as updates to Health Connect and Health Services.

If you want to check out everything this new OS has for you, you can download the new developer preview to check it out. Just make sure to put it on a smartwatch that’s not the one you wear everyday, as you’ll probably run into dealbreaking stability issues or other miscellaneous features. Make sure to check if your watch is compatible.

Source: Google

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By John P.

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