Samsung commits to 'at least three years of software support' for existing Galaxy Watches
With the Pixel 6, Pixel 5a, and even the Pixel Buds A-Series noticeably missing in action at today's Google I/O 2021 opening keynote, Android 12 and a huge Wear OS update seem to be essentially sharing the limelight ahead of their actual release "later this year."
Rebuilt from the ground up with Samsung's crucial help, the newest version of Google's wearable software platform, which appears to be simply dubbed Wear rather than Wear OS now, will probably roll out (in some shape or form) to select existing smartwatches manufactured by companies like Fossil or Mobvoi.
a new editorial penned by its EVP and Head of S/W Platform Team meant primarily to highlight the company's aforementioned collaboration with Google.While that's obviously unlikely to happen for Tizen-powered devices like the Galaxy Watch 3 and Watch Active 2, Samsung says you don't need to worry about those types of things in
The great Gear days might soon be over
Although Samsung is presumably set to focus mainly on "creating an enhanced smartwatch experience" in the months and years to come by combining the best of the Tizen and Wear OS worlds, its "commitment to existing Galaxy smartwatch users" is allegedly stronger than ever.
Said commitment will result in "at least three years of software support after the product launch" for all Galaxy Watches currently in use, which sounds like good news but may end up disappointing certain people.
Wear OS + Tizen = Wear? Google Wear? Wear by Google?
That's because the chaebol itself has set an incredibly high standard when it comes to updating Tizen-based devices, which might be hard to meet going forward. The ancient Gear S3 and Gear Sport, for instance, received the exact same improvements as the Galaxy Watch, Watch Active, Watch Active 2, and Watch 3 as recently as a few weeks ago.
Naturally, no one expected Samsung's stellar software support for those two particular smartwatches to last forever, but it sure sounds like their fancier Galaxy Watch-branded successors will not receive quite the same treatment.
We want to believe
Granted, at least three years doesn't have to mean exactly three years, but unfortunately, we've seen these types of promises unfold in precisely that way far too often in the mobile industry over the years to allow ourselves to dream of more.
In case you're wondering, the Gear S3 is almost five years old (!!!) already, while the OG Galaxy Watch is set to turn three in August 2021, at which point it may well hit the end of the road in terms of software updates.
The same could happen for the Galaxy Watch Active in March 2022, the Watch Active 2 in September 2022, and the Galaxy Watch 3 in August 2023... or Samsung could surprise us by continuing to develop, refine, and improve what's essentially a dead (solo) OS beyond those deadlines.
Even if that ends up being the case, something tells us the Galaxy Watch 3 will not score quite as many hefty software updates as its forerunners until its time will eventually be up, which could understandably make a lot of users angry, especially if you paid $400 (or even more) for that 2020-released bad boy. Perhaps that's why the device, which is undoubtedly still one of the best smartwatches money can buy in 2021, has been discounted so often and so drastically.
On the bright side, this could definitely open the floodgates to a deluge of phenomenal Prime Day deals on the Galaxy Watch Active, Active 2, and Watch 3 next month.