Will Google give up on Wear OS next?

Will Wear OS survive?

  • Yes, it's still got a good chance.

  • Possibly, but it's a gamble.

  • Wear OS? No. Tizen? Possibly.

  • Not really.

  • It's dead, Jim.


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TiggrToo

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Despite all the ballyhoo on flexibility, custom watchfaces, brands and corporate purchases, smart watches running Wear OS by Google continue to massively underperform mainly due to the apparent apathy by Qualcomm and Google's less than inspiring lead.

Even the latest watches announced today at CES, the $275.00 Diesel Fadelite, has the outrageously uninspiring 3100 SoC that finally replaced the pitiful 2100 that had been powering the early Android Watches.

The other trouble is that, at best, Google has given lip service to Wear OS. Literally.

Wear OS v3 was seen as no more than a splash of paint on an already incomplete, incoherent and messy OS. Sure, it sped some things up, added some extra features, but by and large it was still the same OS with the same laggy features.

Right now I can't help but feel that Wear OS is about to get the same fate as the tablet form factor did from Android. Google tried tablet operating systems multiple times, first Honeycomb running on the Xoom, then folding that into Ice Cream Sandwhich before finally throwing in the towel with Oreo.

Today Android app developers don't focus on tablet apps - and why should they? Aside from Samsung, no one else sells Android slabs any more.

Apps are all.

Who wants to buy something when the apps don't support it? As Google found out with their attempts, writing tablet apps requires more than just seeing the bigger screen as a larger canvas. It requires rethinking the paradigm.

Apple got it right - by forcing developers initially to Target the iPad as a whole new device, they got them thinking "how can we best maximise it for the betterment of the application?" And you can't do that if the underlying operating system prevents you for any reason.

Same seems to be true for Wear OS. Right now Apple are on a tear: having finally made the move to make Watch apps a first class citizen, developers seem to have refocused their efforts. Despite the app count being similar between the two platforms, a huge number of Wear OS apps seem to be watchfaces only. In addition, Apples focus on the Watch as a Health device has given it a new cachet.

So, will Google throw in the towel and say "enough" and let Samsung win the day (again), with their Tizen powered devices? Or do you think there may yet be a resurgence of Android Wear devices based on an even newer SoC?
 

AustinIllini

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Oct 20, 2011
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Oh, it's pretty dead. Even Samsung has quite a climb to catch what is happening on Apple Watch.

I can't figure it out honestly. It seems like there is just a ton of disinterest in the watch.
 
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slitherjef

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I think so. Haven't been interested in a smart watch since the og Moto 360 that finally borked after an update and a phone upgrade. Personally don't see much of a reason for smart wear other than to check messages or text on the sly at work or something.

I think VR is gone also.

Between you and I? I think they need to get out of the hardware game and start a pixel program again. But I don't know. I've kinda lost interest in phones :confused:
 
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LBM4

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Sep 26, 2019
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Including Apple's?
Apple will last longer than the rest, even a decade or more, but in the end, still a fad. Much like tablets have come and gone, now limited to niche product status. Smartwatches will always play second fiddle to a real watch in the long run.
But again, this is my opinion. Which ultimately means squat. LOL
 

Oohara

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Jun 28, 2012
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Apple will last longer than the rest, even a decade or more, but in the end, still a fad. Much like tablets have come and gone, now limited to niche product status. Smartwatches will always play second fiddle to a real watch in the long run.
But again, this is my opinion. Which ultimately means squat. LOL
Look around you. Even the worn out 60 years old cashier clerk at the supermarket is wearing an Apple Watch and AirPods. So is the trash collection guy. And the teen serving you at Burger King.

No way is it a fad. It's just that Apple has monopoly on the concept right now. I'm confident that someone will come along and create a worthy competitor for Android & co. It'll definitely take a clear, unified design vision and a dedicated enough hardware solution to pull it off, but it just seems impossible to me that Apple will remain the sole kings on the smartwatch throne for all eternity.

And yes, that's how long smartwatches will continue being a thing. "Second fiddle to a real watch"? Sure I'm not every person on the Earth, but honestly I had never even thought about paying more than €50 for a watch before the AW. Now I'm happy to pay €500, and I'm definitely not the only one.

What I'd like to see for Android is primarily a really thin watch, because the AW still feels and looks kind of bloated. And the premium Android watches to date have been even worse, like a big fat metal puck on the wrist. Thinness could be a great selling point imo.

Android smartwatches also need square face alternatives imo, because honestly that is so much more efficient for displaying relevant info. To me it also looks better. Pair thinness and square watchface with a slightly rugged retro-is/basic (think basic 80s Casio) design, and I'm sold. You could leave out 75% of the fancy functionality of the Apple Watch and I'd still go for it.

Anyway, whether or not Google will give up on WearOS who knows. Maybe yes. And maybe better if they do. They certainly seem to have too many other things on their hands to get their hardware game right at the moment. For smartwatches in general though, I'm confident that we're only at the beginning, and that the market is too lucrative for Apple to be allowed to sit undisturbed on the throne forever.
 

TiggrToo

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Much like tablets have come and gone, now limited to niche product status
Apple's ‌iPad‌ sales hit $4.9 billion in Q2 2019, up from $4 billion in the year-ago quarter, marking a 22 percent increase in revenue.

Niche status? Really?

 
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TiggrToo

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I hope not, i like my Ticwatch C2 and still hoping for the Pixel Watch to exist.
You mean the one rumored to make an appearance in 2018, then 2019 and now 2020?

I have to wonder given that the guesstimated street price was thought to have been ~$350, if Apple's move to keep watches like the Series 3 around at a much cheaper price point when they announced the 4, put a kibosh on those pricing plans and, as such, have caused a rethink inside Google.
 

Harthag

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Apple will last longer than the rest, even a decade or more, but in the end, still a fad. Much like tablets have come and gone, now limited to niche product status. Smartwatches will always play second fiddle to a real watch in the long run.
But again, this is my opinion. Which ultimately means squat. LOL
I felt the same way until I got the AW5 cellular a month ago. My old faithful Panerai has been in my desk drawer since. It’s so light. With always on display it behaves like a “real” watch. I like that I can just raise my watch and quickly dictate a text message reply.

I wear a parka in the winter and my phone stays in my pants pocket and is hard to quickly access. Starbucks has an AW app, I just open it and pay on the watch, done.

I also like having a heart monitor for when I work out. Tried fitbit, hated it.

AW is hardly a fad. It’s the real deal and you see all walks of life wearing one.
 

nickdalzell1

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Dec 8, 2019
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Everything they make dies and gets replaced with the same thing under a new name. Talk-->Hangouts-->Allo-->Messenger for example. I got sick of having to relearn a new UI every other week. Many haven't forgiven them over Reader. I didn't use Reader but given how popular it was it was stupid for them to kill it. People even offered to pay for the servers to remain up. No dice. Google is customer hostile. In the 70s, being customer hostile was deadly for a business.

I got some older Android Wear watches. It was great until 2.x redesign. They broke the ability to have navigation on the watch by giving voice commands (still not fixed) for one, and Assistant is slow/broken on Wear OS 2.x.

I never see anything short of Apple Watches around my town. I've seen only three Galaxy style watches and that's it. I know two people in my family who have modern Wear OS watches, by Fossil. Best Buy tore down their Wear OS section not long ago and has replaced it with baby monitors. I asked why and they said "No one is buying Wear OS watches"
 
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LBM4

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Sep 26, 2019
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Apple's ‌iPad‌ sales hit $4.9 billion in Q2 2019, up from $4 billion in the year-ago quarter, marking a 22 percent increase in revenue.

Niche status? Really?

Revenue is not an indicator of niche (or non-niche) status.
 

LBM4

macrumors member
Sep 26, 2019
65
40
I felt the same way until I got the AW5 cellular a month ago. My old faithful Panerai has been in my desk drawer since. It’s so light. With always on display it behaves like a “real” watch. I like that I can just raise my watch and quickly dictate a text message reply.

I wear a parka in the winter and my phone stays in my pants pocket and is hard to quickly access. Starbucks has an AW app, I just open it and pay on the watch, done.

I also like having a heart monitor for when I work out. Tried fitbit, hated it.

AW is hardly a fad. It’s the real deal and you see all walks of life wearing one.
I’m not disagreeing with anyone. I’ve had all the smartwatches, from nearly every manufacturer, since they came out.

They provide benefits, no argument here. But a lot of people look at these devices with a short term outlook. Apple watches are popular and a lot of people buy them. This is great in that it can get people started into looking at real watches. Watches that are investments and can be handed down to their children. No one looks at an Apple Watch as an investment or something that will last more than a few years.

Where will Smart watches be in 10 years? Will they still exist? This is what a fad is. Lasts a few years and then becomes something else. What if heads up displays in glasses, contact lens or holographic gloves replace smart watches in 2025? Will people even remember that Apple made smart watches come 2030?

Again, just my opinions and they don’t mean much. Call me bonkers. You’re probably right to. 😂
- - Post merged: - -

Er, yes it is. It's not a guarantee, but it sure as heck is an indicator.
If my company makes $3 trillion in Q2, but only $1 billion of that was revenue in product x, it’s niche.

If my company makes $3 billion annually, and $1 billion of that was revenue in product x, that’s not niche.

Revenue is not an indicator unless it can be quantified. Just depends on the metrics involved.
 
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TiggrToo

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I’m not disagreeing with anyone. I’ve had all the smartwatches, from nearly every manufacturer, since they came out.

They provide benefits, no argument here. But a lot of people look at these devices with a short term outlook. Apple watches are popular and a lot of people buy them. This is great in that it can get people started into looking at real watches. Watches that are investments and can be handed down to their children. No one looks at an Apple Watch as an investment or something that will last more than a few years.

Where will Smart watches be in 10 years? Will they still exist? This is what a fad is. Lasts a few years and then becomes something else. What if heads up displays in glasses, contact lens or holographic gloves replace smart watches in 2025? Will people even remember that Apple made smart watches come 2030?

Again, just my opinions and they don’t mean much. Call me bonkers. You’re probably right to. 😂
- - Post merged: - -


If my company makes $3 trillion in Q2, but only $1 billion of that was revenue in product x, it’s niche.

If my company makes $3 billion annually, and $1 billion of that was revenue in product x, that’s not niche.

Revenue is not an indicator unless it can be quantified. Just depends on the metrics involved.
Your example is wrong. The accusation is that tablets were a niche item. Period. Not a niche item for Apple, but a niche item period. Your example only holds water if we're talking about if it's a niche item for Apple.

My point is that, ignoring what else is sold by Apple, $4.9bn of anything is not small potatoes. And the numbers are rising.

In 2018 Apple sold 400 million iPads. That's not niche.



Like I said, it's an indicator. When you know everything around it, it's an indicator.

I never stated it's a metric. Please stop quibbling with semantics.
 

LBM4

macrumors member
Sep 26, 2019
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Your example is wrong. The accusation is that tablets were a niche item. Period. Not a niche item for Apple, but a niche item period. Your example only holds water if we're talking about if it's a niche item for Apple.

My point is that, ignoring what else is sold by Apple, $4.9bn of anything is not small potatoes. And the numbers are rising.

In 2018 Apple sold 400 million iPads. That's not niche.



Like I said, it's an indicator. When you know everything around it, it's an indicator.

I never stated it's a metric. Please stop quibbling with semantics.
iPads revenue made up 7% of Apple's revenue in Q4. Out of Services, watches, Macs and iPhones, it made up the smallest part of the revenue pie. Smartwatches were 2nd lowest in revenue. I think we have different definitions of niche, which is fine. I don't wish to argue and I shall leave this thread. I apologize if my opinions offended anyone.
 
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Strangedream

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Apple will last longer than the rest, even a decade or more, but in the end, still a fad. Much like tablets have come and gone, now limited to niche product status. Smartwatches will always play second fiddle to a real watch in the long run.
But again, this is my opinion. Which ultimately means squat. LOL
Smartwatches and mechanical watches fulfill very different needs. While most people only care about the "time-telling" side of a watch, many also see a timepiece as a wearable statement. This is why both smartwatches and mechanical do and can co-exists, and the market for cheaper fashion watches as well as smartwatches keep expanding.

Some smartwatches like Apple Watch are much better than say the Google wear, so of course you'll have winners and losers. Still doesn't mean the entire smartwatch industry will collapse.
 
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kamikazeeMC

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Aug 18, 2017
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If you're looking at consumer electronics as lifetime investments, you're doing it wrong (not aiming this at you). They have a finite lifespan and are quickly dated and replaced. Like the smartphone, while still called a 'phone' they stopped being just a phone a long time ago. You can look at the smartwatch the same, they look similar and tell the time, or fashion accessory, but provide lots or other functions.

Sure in time perhaps people will move on to AR glasses or even implants or straight up replacing an eye.
 
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Harthag

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Sure in time perhaps people will move on to AR glasses or even implants or straight up replacing an eye.


Oh man, I can see the MR threads now.

"I returned my right eye 15 times because there's dust on the cornea"
"Does your Apple Eye have a yellow tint when you look at a white background?"
"Siri turns my eyes off whenever I keep my eyes shut for more than 5 seconds, WTH?"
"My Eye fell into the toilet and Apple won't replace it..."

"Apple Eyes only available in the U.S. and 5 other select markets." Society goes into full on "Minority Report" mode and you see shady dudes with bags of Eyes willing to perform the procedure for half price and a joint in the areas that Apple doesn't support.

I'll show myself out...
 

Shanghaichica

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Apr 8, 2013
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Look around you. Even the worn out 60 years old cashier clerk at the supermarket is wearing an Apple Watch and AirPods. So is the trash collection guy. And the teen serving you at Burger King.

No way is it a fad. It's just that Apple has monopoly on the concept right now. I'm confident that someone will come along and create a worthy competitor for Android & co. It'll definitely take a clear, unified design vision and a dedicated enough hardware solution to pull it off, but it just seems impossible to me that Apple will remain the sole kings on the smartwatch throne for all eternity.

And yes, that's how long smartwatches will continue being a thing. "Second fiddle to a real watch"? Sure I'm not every person on the Earth, but honestly I had never even thought about paying more than €50 for a watch before the AW. Now I'm happy to pay €500, and I'm definitely not the only one.

What I'd like to see for Android is primarily a really thin watch, because the AW still feels and looks kind of bloated. And the premium Android watches to date have been even worse, like a big fat metal puck on the wrist. Thinness could be a great selling point imo.

Android smartwatches also need square face alternatives imo, because honestly that is so much more efficient for displaying relevant info. To me it also looks better. Pair thinness and square watchface with a slightly rugged retro-is/basic (think basic 80s Casio) design, and I'm sold. You could leave out 75% of the fancy functionality of the Apple Watch and I'd still go for it.

Anyway, whether or not Google will give up on WearOS who knows. Maybe yes. And maybe better if they do. They certainly seem to have too many other things on their hands to get their hardware game right at the moment. For smartwatches in general though, I'm confident that we're only at the beginning, and that the market is too lucrative for Apple to be allowed to sit undisturbed on the throne forever.
The Apple Watch is everywhere. Even if I go go to the local shops or town centre. I’ll see at least one.

I was at work today. 7 staff on duty on the hospital ward I work on. 4 had apple watches and one had a Samsung Watch. A police officer came to the ward to speak to one of the patients and low and behold he had an Apple Watch on.

It’s interesting how quickly the Apple Watch has caught on with the general public.
 
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slitherjef

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Oh man, I can see the MR threads now.

"I returned my right eye 15 times because there's dust on the cornea"
"Does your Apple Eye have a yellow tint when you look at a white background?"
"Siri turns my eyes off whenever I keep my eyes shut for more than 5 seconds, WTH?"
"My Eye fell into the toilet and Apple won't replace it..."

"Apple Eyes only available in the U.S. and 5 other select markets." Society goes into full on "Minority Report" mode and you see shady dudes with bags of Eyes willing to perform the procedure for half price and a joint in the areas that Apple doesn't support.

I'll show myself out...
If you run into the door casing, you're using your Apple eye wrong 😜

Sorry couldn't resist 😉
 
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Breaking Good

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Sep 28, 2012
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Android smartwatches also need square face alternatives imo, because honestly that is so much more efficient for displaying relevant info.
^^^^^This times a thousand.

I simply cannot understand why Android O.E.M.'s are so set on making round smartwatches. They have no inhibitions about copying the iPhone design elements. Why don't they copy the Apple Watch elements.

Here's a tip. If your competitor is selling something left and right, you may want to take a close look at it.
- - Post merged: - -

If you're looking at consumer electronics as lifetime investments, you're doing it wrong (not aiming this at you). They have a finite lifespan and are quickly dated and replaced. Like the smartphone, while still called a 'phone' they stopped being just a phone a long time ago. You can look at the smartwatch the same, they look similar and tell the time, or fashion accessory, but provide lots or other functions.

Sure in time perhaps people will move on to AR glasses or even implants or straight up replacing an eye.
Bingo on this smartphones and smartwatches stopped being phones and watches some time ago. They are the evolution of the personal computer.
 
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