While you can still use the Assistant by long-pressing buttons (which is really my preferred technique of bringing up Assistant on Wear OS), its informing that Google has understood about the problem for this long and still hasnt fixed the issue.Wear OS has long been one of Googles a lot of ignored projects, however this is a brand-new low. Worse yet, Googles most recent updates to Wear OS were paltry at best, with somewhat better app packing times and a weather tile as the marquee features.This was all Wear OS had to offer in 2020. Theres the unique chance that a Samsung Wear OS watch would suck less than every other Wear OS watch. While Im sure Samsungs rotating bezel navigation could be ported onto a Wear OS watch, it just wouldnt be rather as good unless Google enabled Samsung to run a Wear OS skin (which is what Oppo did with its Wear OS watch). Its telling that Wear OS was actually decent on the Oppo Watch since it didnt operate or look anything like Wear OS.
Photo: Victoria Song/GizmodoRumors that Samsung might potentially ditch Tizen, its proprietary OS for wearables, for Googles Wear OS, have actually been flying lately. Its a complicated idea, considering that Samsung smartwatches are the finest Android-friendly smartwatches right now, and Wear OS is a stinking hot mess.Case in point: 9to5Google reports that the “OKAY Google” or “Hey Google” expressions to activate Google Assistant on Wear OS watches have actually been broken for months. Google also verified to The Verge that it understood this bug, which has been plaguing users because at least November 2020, and is working on a repair. While you can still utilize the Assistant by long-pressing buttons (which is in fact my preferred method of raising Assistant on Wear OS), its informing that Google has actually understood about the issue for this long and still hasnt fixed the issue.Wear OS has long been one of Googles many neglected jobs, but this is a brand-new low. The primary factor to choose a Wear OS supervise a Fitbit or Samsung smartwatch is native combination with Google Assistant and Google Pay. If you do not care about quickly fixing among the main selling points of your wearables platform, then Im not sure I can with confidence state Wear OS is going to be around for the long run. And this isnt the only circumstances. Back in October, even Google put Wear OS 2nd by opting to launch a YouTube Music app for the Apple Watch. Worse yet, Googles newest updates to Wear OS were paltry at best, with somewhat better app loading times and a weather condition tile as the marquee features.This was all Wear OS needed to use in 2020. Compare that to Samsungs smash hit year, in which it absolutely knocked it out of the park with the Galaxy Watch 3. Now, the Galaxy Watch 3 is the just other flagship smartwatch that can go toe-to-toe with the Apple Watch on nearly every single function. Obviously, its not best. Some features like its FDA-cleared electrocardiogram app are presently just offered for Samsung smartphone owners. Nevertheless, theres really no competition between the Galaxy Watch 3 and even the very best of the very best Wear OS watches Ive checked. G/O Media might get a commissionTo be fair, once upon a time Samsung did use Wear OS– then Android Wear– on its smartwatches. In 2014, it made the switch to Tizen with the Gear 2 and Gear 2 Neo, probably for the same factors almost every other smartwatch maker besides Fossil at the time did: Googles clunky UI, low adoption rate, and the out-of-date Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 2100 chip.So why, why would Samsung go back to a platform that has yet to get its shit together? I can consider a few reasons, however none of them are especially good. For beginners, Tizen doesnt have a fantastic ecosystem of third-party apps, and switching to Wear OS might open it approximately more apps. To be quite truthful, Wear OS apps dont get much designer love, even if there are more of them. Spotify for Wear OS is a glorified remote control, while Spotify for Tizen lets you use offline playlists. Googles native Wear OS apps are OKAY at best, and frankly, its bizarre that the built-in Google Fit exercise app is actually now divided into several various variations. Google Fit, even with newer updates, is also not much better than Samsung Health, and having actually both set up on your watch is again, tedious.The other reason I might see Samsung making the switch would be to bring the option of Google Assistant and Google Pay to Samsung watches. And that would be incredible, since Samsung Pay is more restrictive to utilize than Google Pay, and who the hell actually likes Bixby? Does Samsung require to go all-in on Wear OS to include Assistant and Google Pay? Fitbit manages to have Google Assistant deal with Fitbit OS, why not enable Samsung to do the exact same? (Granted, Fitbit likely has Assistant because Google now owns the company.) Theres the unique chance that a Samsung Wear OS watch would draw less than every other Wear OS watch. Thats mostly since Samsung might use its exclusive Exynos SoC rather of relying on Qualcomms, which is doing the bare minimum. While Im sure Samsungs rotating bezel navigation might be ported onto a Wear OS watch, it just wouldnt be rather as good unless Google allowed Samsung to run a Wear OS skin (which is what Oppo did with its Wear OS watch). Its informing that Wear OS was in fact good on the Oppo Watch since it didnt look or work anything like Wear OS. And at that point, what even is the reason to switch from Tizen again?Its clear that Google gets more out of Samsung using Wear OS than vice versa. Samsung bringing its smartwatch developments to that platform would all of a sudden make it relevant once again– offered that all of Samsungs apps, consisting of the ones that require FDA clearance, could effortlessly make the jump. Except that wouldnt make Wear OS as an entire excellent. For that to happen, other watchmakers would need to determine how to make the best use of Wear OS. Google would need to actually update the damn platform regularly with in fact great features, not incremental ones that are barely a blip on the radar. As soon as every two years, Qualcomm would have to figure out how to upgrade its wearable SoC to current procedure innovation and do it more than. Whichs if Google doesnt decide to up-end the entire thing now that it owns Fitbit to make something else entirely.Android users– and not just the ones who utilize Samsung mobile phones– are worthy of an excellent smartwatch. This simply doesnt appear like the best method to get one.