Android Wear: More Wearable Wearable Tech?

New OS set to open up smartwatch market

By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff

Posted Mar 19, 2014 4:10 AM CDT

(Newser) – Wearable technology looks set to take a big leap forward with Google's new Android Wear system, a version of its mobile operating system designed specifically for wearable devices. Analysts say the move opens the door for a lot of wearable devices like smartwatches that, unlike Google Glass, the general public will be comfortable about wearing.

  • Google says it plans to start with watch software, and LG has already announced that its LG G watch will run on the new system, reports the Washington Post. "We're confident that a well-designed device has the potential to take the smart wearable market by storm," the company's chief executive says.

  • Google says its new software will allow wearables that will allow consumers to do things like monitor their health and fitness and connect with other devices, features that analysts believe will help smartwatches become a lot more popular than Google Glass. "It's a really cool idea, but there's something that creeps people out about it," a tech analyst tells Reuters.
  • Researchers predict that wearable devices will become a $10 billion market by 2016, making it important for Google to try and get ahead of Apple after entering the smartphone and tablet markets late, the New York Times finds. Numerous sources say Apple is working on a smart "iWatch," but the company has never confirmed that one is in development.
  • One thing that could still hold Google back in the smartwatch market: The devices tend to be ugly. "They’re just not that attractive," a telecoms analyst says. "And they are all clunky, square and large." But Motorola, the second company to announce an Android Wear device, appears ready to change that, TechCrunch finds. Its new Moto 360 has a round face and the company is marketing it as a fashion-first device.

The Moto 360 smartwatch, one of the first Android Wear devices unveiled.
The Moto 360 smartwatch, one of the first Android Wear devices unveiled.   (Motorola)
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