A much-needed shot in the wrist
Wear OS is in an awkward spot. Having recently rebranded the smartwatch OS formerly known as Android Wear, Google hopes the number of iPhone users buying Wear smartwatches will continue to swell – but the bedrock on which these wearables are built is starting to fossilize.
Over the last few years Google has assembled an all-star cast of fashion and technology brands to build Wear OS smartwatches, but they’re all being held back by technology that feels antiquated – and rapidly falling behind the competition. Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Wear 2100 system-on-chip was announced at the start of 2016 and – some software improvements aside – hasn’t been refreshed since, while the Apple Watch and even Samsung’s Tizen smartwatches have bounded ahead.
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