If you think that smartwatches would no more be in the limelight in 2017, Google has some different plans! Yes, the search engine giant has recently confirmed that the company is planning to introduce two flagship smartwatches soon in early 2017.
In the latest interview with The Verge, product manager of Android Wear at Google, Jeff Chang said that the company plans to introduce two flagship smartwatches powered by the Android Wear 2.0, and would be the first to host this latest Google smartwatch OS.
Android Wear 2.0 is considered to come with some new features onboard like the NFC enabled Android Pay, standalone apps and baked in Google’s voice assistance. The Android Wear 2.0 final developer preview is expected to be released in January with support for the above-mentioned technologies. The OS is also expected to work with iOS devices. However, Chang clarified that there would be a difference between the Android and the iOS version.
The release of the Android Wear 2.0 OS is also likely to be brought other Android Wear device. Though Chang said that technologies like NFC require a particular hardware component, and existing smartwatches like the LG Urbane 2nd Edition that already have built-in NFC support will be the early beneficiaries of it.
Clearing the air regarding the future of smartwatch market, Chang says that Google’s other partners will to come with Android Wear 2.0 smartwatches following the launch of Google smartwatches in 2017. The announcement could be expected at the CES 2017 expo, next week, and even at the Baseworld show in the later half of 2017.
Chang pointed out as how Google benefits from its partnership with several manufacturers and says he is quite optimistic about the smartwatch consumption that follows ahead. “We’ve enabled a lot of diversity with our hardware partners to target different types of consumers and preferences. This is a marathon, not a sprint. This category of product is here with us to stay.”
While talking about the branding of the upcoming smartwatches, Chang said that it wouldn’t be branded as Pixel or Google smartwatches but would rather carry the manufacturer’s name. The company has already decided upon the manufacturer, though Chang refused to name it at the moment, hinted that they have been making Android Wear devices in the past.
Looking to the current trend in the smartwatch tech world, what we have seen is that consumers have been more aligned to buy watches with specific applications like fitness tracking, heart rate monitoring, etc. The smartwatch market is still to kick off for adaptability for overall usage. Though we expect Google and another manufacturer to pitch some innovative new features to consumers with their smartwatch devices.