Google introduced Android Wear in 2014, but now, it's ditching the software's name and branding.
Although partner manufacturers have launched a bunch of Android Wear devices since 2014, some critics could argue that the software isn't as ubiquitous as it could be, which brings us to this latest development: Wear OS. Google has replaced the Android Wear brand with Wear OS. A new section on Google’s website has confirmed the change. It even has a new “Make every minute matter” slogan.
To be clear, Google isn't giving up on Android Wear, and it isn't changing the software in any way right now. We're assuming it just wants to try something new. Plus, Android Wear works with both Android and iOS, so the move makes sense. The new name no longer ties it to a specific operating system - even though iPhone users don't have access to all the same features as Android users.
- Android Wear rebranding underway it seems, get ready
- Android Oreo rolling out to Android Wear devices now
Google said that, in 2017, one out of three new Android Wear watch owners also used an iPhone, and that more than 50 Wear OS watches have launched since 2014: “We’re announcing a new name that better reflects our technology, vision, and most important of all - the people who wear our watches. We’re now Wear OS by Google, a wearables operating system for everyone,” Google’s explained.
You’ll begin to see the new Wear OS name on your watch and phone app over the next few weeks. Keep in mind this change comes ahead of next week's Baselworld expo, where we'll likely see even more Wear OS products debut. Also, Google's own developer's conference is in May, and it usually uses that show to announce updates to the Android OS platform as well as Android Wear... err, Wear OS.