At SXSW, a week and several days ago, Android boss Sundar Pichai promised us that Google will be releasing an SDK for wearables in a fortnight. That has happened with the announcement of Android Wear and a developer preview of the same today.
What is Android Wear? This is Google’s platform for wearables. In short, all manufacturers out there who are working on wearables of any nature be they fitness trackers or smartwatches, are welcome to the party. As you’ll see from the videos below, its going to be super intuitive and in my opinion, this will be the best we’ll see of wearables before that rumoured Apple iWatch becomes a reality.
Android Wear as the name suggests, will be based on Android and will make use of the platform’s features like a centralized notification system that Google has made stronger with recent versions of Android starting with Android 4.3 Jelly Bean and Android 4.4 KitKat. The ability for apps to access system level notifications and mirror them is what will be deeply exploited as Android Wear’s main goal is to provide you with information whenever you need it either by glancing on your wrist and swiping to check the various notifications or having notifications or questions you have being read to you upon querying Moto X style. Interesting. The same can also be used to control your smartphone and other synced devices.
In addition, Android Wear will also focus on minding your health and fitness. This has been the biggest focus of wearables and surely Google was not going to ignore this.
Let’s wait and see what comes of various OEM’s efforts to put Android Wear to good use in coming months. With Samsung having gone the Tizen way with its latest wearables and the likes of Qualcomm and Sony pursuing the same mission on their own, it is refreshing to hear that Google is working with various partners on Android Wear powered wearables. Some of these partners are Asus, HTC, LG, Motorola, Samsung, Broadcom, Imagination, Intel, Mediatek and Qualcomm. LG is said to be going first with its G smartwatch rumoured to be around the corner. Motorola is not far off with the Moto360 also on the table of the Lenovo-owned company.