Android Wear and Moto 360 updates begin rolling out
The Android Wear 2.0 update was expected on Oct 15th. That date came and went like the Mayan 2012 prophecy and delivered about as much as the said Prophecy without all the looting, hoarding, press coverage and excitement. That all changed this morning when several Android Wear users (more specifically users of the LG G watch) reported that their smart watch had received 4.4W2 update. In order to install the update, your watch must have at least a 80% charge. The LG G watch is the first to receive the update, perhaps because the Nexus 5 is manufactured by LG and the Nexus 6 which is manufactured by Motorola has not been released yet (pre-orders starting soon).
Google has committed to providing a lot of updates to their Wear platform before the end of the year as they told CNET. The most exciting part of the update made available today is that it enables watches to support on-board GPS. On-board GPS would not be available to the current generation of watches as they lack the hardware, however future devices will be able to take advantage of this. Another interesting feature is the ability to pair bluetooth speakers and headphones with the watch. The Bluetooth connectivity does not let you stream music just yet, however it is used to launch music and query for information using “OK Google.” Other interesting features include new gestures that let you access the full face of the watch without dismissing notifications and a whole host of bug fixes and performance improvements.
There are also rumored updates to the Moto 360 smart watch. Android Central has reported a list of updates on their site. The most exciting features from this update are:
- Smart Battery Saving – When your battery hits 15%, your Moto 360 will turn off ambient mode, so you don’t have to remember to.
- Timely Time Checks – Moto 360 will synchronize the time with your phone more often to make sure it is up to the minute.
- User Interface Tweaks – We observed with consumers that there are many times where you want to use your Moto 360 as truly a classic watch—a beautiful way to see the time. A new gesture now lets you see the full watch face without permanently dismissing a notification. Just touch the top of a notification and swipe down. You’ll see the notification again when you have another high priority notification.
- Mood Lighting – Moto 360 will adjust to the lighting of the room while charging, so that it isn’t too bright or too dark.
- Readying the wires for Bluetooth – There are a couple of under-the-hood enhancements that will pave the way for connecting Bluetooth headsets to the watch.
- Bug Squashing – As usual, bugs are squashed to enhance the overall user experience.