From early 2017 to Q1 and eventually early February, we now possibly have a more precise date for when the next major version of Android Wear is launching. Rumored by the usually reliable Evan Blass, “Android Wear 2.0 launches on February 9th.”
Delayed from last Fall due to “quality requirements,” Wear 2.0 has a big focus on making smartwatches independent devices with an on-device Play Store that supports downloading watch-specific apps and in-app billing. Google has already showcased a number of apps that take advantage of the new OS capabilities.
Ahead of time, Google has announced which devices will be updated to Wear 2.0, though it’s unknown how soon OTAs will be available after the February launch. We are already aware of major features like Google Assistant and Android Pay coming to Wear devices, though we have yet to see the full implementation.
As such, the most exciting thing coming from the Thursday announcement will likely be two flagship Nexus-like Android Wear devices. Made by OEMs that Google has previously worked with, the devices are interestingly not Pixel branded.
Rumors point to a smaller 42mm watch codenamed Swordfish that features a single side button and no flat-tire due to a small gap between the display and body. Meanwhile, Angelfish is intended to be the more advanced device with a heart rate sensor, GPS, and LTE. A FCC filing from last week points to LG having an LTE smartwatch running Wear 2.0 in the works.
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