Images of stock Wear OS 3 surface after release of developer preview
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The idea behind the Pixel handset series is to show off the Android operating system and all of its bells and whistles the way God Google intended it to be. And now we are going to see the same thing with the rumored Pixel Watch and Wear OS. We've already shown you what looks to be official marketing images for the timepiece which features a round display with a bezel-less design.
Here's a look at Wear OS 3 without Samsung's skin
Earlier this year Samsung shocked the Galaxy Watch faithful by dropping its home-brewed Tizen concoction for Wear OS. But that version of the operating system contained Samsung's UI thus preventing us from getting a look at stock Wear OS 3 until now. Google has released an emulator-based developer preview of the software which was spotted by 9to5Google.
The Android 12 inspired battery screen
The new update was released with a complete menu redesign which includes round buttons and toggles. The battery screen has been revamped to match Android 12 and the page to set audio volume has "+" and "-" keys that stand out making it easy and quicker to set the volume at the level you want. The app drawer shows Recent Apps on the top of the screen with a list of all installed apps below.
The Wear OS 3 developer preview timer
As you know, Google parent Alphabet purchased fitness tracker/smartwatch manufacturer Fitbit in November 2019 with the goal of turning Wear OS from a hot mess into something more palatable. Thus far, no features related to Fitbit have been spotted on Wear OS 3, but remember, only the developer preview has been released. At the time that the Fitbit deal was announced, Google said that the $2.1 billion deal would allow it to "introduce Made by Google wearable devices into the market."
Setting menu for Wear OS 3 developer preview
It has been reported that Google has not been comfortable releasing a Pixel Watch in the past because it felt that Wear OS was not quite ready for prime time. But with Google taking the Pixel 6 series to another level this year, now certainly would be the time to expand the Google ecosystem by releasing a Pixel Watch.
Two years ago Google halted plans to unveil a Pixel Watch because Wear OS was not ready for Prime Time
And if Wear OS was so embarrassing to Google before that it prevented the company from releasing a smartwatch in the past, Google must feel rather comfortable now after the changes it has made in Wear OS 3. A shake of the Magic 8 Ball says that all signs point to the release of a Pixel Watch early next year. The closest that Google had come before to releasing a smartwatch was back in 2019.
Google has released an emulator based developer preview for Wear OS 3
Two years ago, Google was ready to raise the bar on its devices by adding a ton of features to the Pixel 4 and Pixel 4 XL. Heavily promoted applications like Face Unlock, and the laser-based Motion Sense at first gave everyone the feeling that Google was going all-in with its new releases. So when a last-minute rumor called for Google to release the first Pixel Watch at the Pixel 4 series unveiling event, it made sense at the time just as the unveiling of a Pixel Watch makes sense now.
Pick up the Google Pixel 6 or Pixel 6 Pro
And even though Google had spent $40 million to buy intellectual property from Fossil earlier that year heightening the Pixel Watch speculation, no timepiece showed up at the event. As it turned out, the Pixel 4 line, which Google had high hopes for, simply was a total disappointment. Motion Sense was extremely limited to mostly parlor tricks such as halting or snoozing an alarm, dismissing a phone call, and controlling streaming media.
But we're happy to say that the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro legitimately take Pixel to a much higher level this year and we hope that the things that make the Pixel-Android team special (first to receive updates, feature drops, exclusive features) are found with the Pixel Watch and Wear OS combination.