It's almost 'time' for Qualcomm's big Apple Watch-contending Snapdragon Wear upgrade

It's almost 'time' for Qualcomm's big Apple Watch-contending Snapdragon Wear upgrade
A new processor is unlikely to suddenly turn Wear OS-powered smartwatches into mainstream rivals for Apple’s market-leading wearable device family, but it could be at the very least a fresh start for a long-struggling, recently rebranded software platform.

Google had high hopes for Android Wear back in 2014, when numerous analysts viewed wearables in general as the industry’s next big thing, but several years in, this is still a product category in search of a purpose.

Qualcomm reportedly aims to change that by unveiling a long overdue sequel for the Snapdragon Wear 2100. We can't be 100 percent certain of this, but the next-gen chipset confirmed for a fall launch a few months ago could well see daylight on September 10.

That’s by far the safest bet we can make based on save the date cards sent out to various journalists and bloggers earlier today by the semiconductor giant. These feature suggestive taglines like “it’s time” and “set your watches”, as well as a rough depiction of a generic circular timepiece with the Qualcomm logo and a San Francisco weather widget.


It feels reasonable to assume this (not so) mysterious September 10 event will take place in the Californian city, although its timing doesn’t look very wise, as Apple is expected to announce three new iPhones and the Apple Watch Series 4 just two days later.

The Snapdragon Wear 2100 was certainly a solid upgrade over the repackaged Snapdragon 400 powering the first wave of Android Wear devices, but after two and a half years, it’s definitely “time” for a new chip. One that Qualcomm described back in May as “designed from the ground up for a no-compromises smartwatch experience”, which sounds like the ideal candidate for a Google Pixel Watch expected out in October.

previous coverage: Wareable

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12 Comments

1. surethom

Posts: 1731; Member since: Mar 04, 2009

10th September or October 9th? Never get American dates.

2. RebelwithoutaClue unregistered

"t feels reasonable to assume this (not so) mysterious September 10 event "

3. Rampage_Taco

Posts: 1109; Member since: Jan 17, 2017

It's because we say the Month before day in speech. For instance, it is August 7th today, most countries refer to it as the 7th of August

4. apple-rulz

Posts: 2198; Member since: Dec 27, 2016

Nobody at this rate is a viable contender to challenge Apple in the wearables market, Apple is too firmly entrenched with too big of a loyal market.

5. Atechguy0

Posts: 918; Member since: Aug 03, 2018

Anyone can challenge Apple in this area, especially when Apples watch only works with iPhones. Where as Android Wear or Wear OS now, plus lots of others support more than just iPhones. Plus Apples watches are all square, and their watch face is off for most of their life. Not to mention Qualcomm's quad core 2100 is faster than Apples dual core S3 chipset. Also Wear OS an Tizen give developers a lot more control to do a lot more things than Apples watch OS.

6. apple-rulz

Posts: 2198; Member since: Dec 27, 2016

The proof of the pudding is in the eating. How are those watch sales (Wear OS, Tizen) doing compared to the Apple Watch?

8. lyndon420

Posts: 6897; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

Samsung sucks and I'm sure there are many who share the same view, and Android wear as it currently stands does not live up to most expectations (hopefully they get it right with this new chip). Oh...and how is the apple watch doing? Has apple released any actual 'sales' numbers yet??

12. Feanor

Posts: 1421; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

Unfounded rumour mill; on a direct comparison, feature by feature the Apple Watch doesn't hold a candle against Gear S3 and Wear OS watches, but there you go... Poor journalism and incredible Apple brand loyalty distort reality.

9. Atechguy0

Posts: 918; Member since: Aug 03, 2018

Your are the perfect Apple customer, you will buy anything that Apple makes. Hey you even said you have multiple Homepods. I rest my case on that last part. Still it doesn't change what I previously posted. It's the truth.

10. Feanor

Posts: 1421; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

How many times have I explained that the sales of the Apple Watch have nothing to do with how good it is (it's really not) and everything to do with its badge? Make a simple test; imagine the Apple Watch with a ZTE badge. Now think how much it would sell... See what I have done here?

7. lyndon420

Posts: 6897; Member since: Jul 11, 2012

The loyal market you speak of is comprised of a very small percentage of the population...those who use iPhones. The rest of the market uses Android and falls into one of two camps: 1) Those waiting for better battery life to justify such a purchase, and 2) Those who don't have a need for one and see it as just a gimmick. If the apple watch worked with Android, its sales may have been good enough to disclose to the public by now (pretty sure it's still the only device apple makes where sales numbers are kept secret for whatever reason).

11. Feanor

Posts: 1421; Member since: Jun 20, 2012

Battery life of Apple Watch is worse than in Wear OS. Don't forget that Apple Watch is the only smartwatch that doesn't permit always on display, whereas all Wear OS watches get tested with the feature turned on.

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