Google has officially let the cat out the bag regarding its plans for the next generation of Android Wear 2.0-touting smartwatches. The tech behemoth is going to launch 2 new flagship wearables in Q1 of 2017.
Android Wear’s product manager Jeff Chang confirmed the smartwatches arrival to The Verge, detailing that the devices will be the flagship Android Wear 2.0 offerings and the first to run on the new OS. Interestingly, Google’s not looking to stamp its own branding on the wearables like it did with the Pixel smartphone.
Instead, the gadgets will bear the mark of the firm which is manufacturing them. Which company is producing the pair is a mystery as of now. Chang didn’t name the brand in question, but did reveal that Google has worked with the OEM in the past.
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Change also likened the collaboration to the now-defunct Nexus program. Google apparently worked with the manufacturer on hardware design and software integration. The arrival of the two wearables is set to be followed up by partners releasing their own Android Wear 2.0 devices.
Announcements will likely start coming out at CES 2017 and Baselworld. As for current devices, a number of them will be getting updated to version 2.0 of the platform next year. This list includes the Moto 360 Gen 2, Moto 360 Sport, Huawei Watch, LG Watch Urbane 2nd Edition LTE, LG Watch Urbane, Asus ZenWatch 2, and Asus ZenWatch 3.
Android Wear 2.0 introduces a couple of useful features such as independent apps which don’t need a smartphone to function, Google Assistant, and Android Pay support. The final developer preview of the OS will be rolled out in January and is probably going to offer the latter two.