Smartwatches: The Latest In Wearable Technology
Published June 9th, 2014
You've probably already heard about Google Glass, but did you know that the latest in wearable Google technology will be coming in the form of a wristwatch? Google recently announced an operating system called "Android Wear" for wearable technologies, the first of which will be Android Wear smartwatches. The first LG smartwatch is expected to be released in July.
Here are some of the features and selling points of Android Wear smartwatches:
It looks like you'll be able to talk to your wristwatch in secret agent style and give it various voice commands to search and to send messages. Searches will have to be activated by saying "OK Google." For example, in a promotional video, a man asks his watch, "OK Google, what's the Syracuse score?" You'll also be able to reply to messages by saying "reply."
These are handy functions, but chances are that when out in public most people will probably still take out their phone to type their searches and replies.
Directions On Your Wrist
Watches used to be for telling time, but soon their number one purpose may be to give us directions. Google Maps will definitely be a key component of Android Wear, allowing you to glance down at your wrist in order to see your location and get directions to anywhere you want to go.
Fitness tracking is an absolute must if Android Wear is ever going to take off, and, according to the promotional videos, this is going to be a key component of the smartwatches. They will be able to tell you how fare you've gone, how many calories you've burned, and how long you've been exercising for.
Connection to Android Phones
The ability to connect to your Android smartphone is what will really give these watches usefulness over and above location and fitness tracking. You'll be able to receive app notifications, text messages, and alerts from your phone directly to your watch instead of having to dig it out of your pocket or bag to check. App developers will no doubt come up with various useful apps to increase the functionality of your phone and your watch.
If Google wants consumers to actually wear this wearable technology, then the watches are going to have to be visually appealing. It seems that many of the developers who are gearing up to create devices for the Android Wear operating system are working to do just that, with sleek and stylish designs that will compliment rather than detract from your style.
Wider Appeal Than Google Glass?
Some people are uncomfortable about Google Glass' capability to augment reality to a concerning degree since you wear it over your eyes. However, Android Wear seems to have the potential to tone down some of these concerns and appeal to critics of Google Glass.
It also won't come with the same suspicions that the wearer may be able to start taking a video of you with a blink of their eyelids. A watch is more like a smaller version of the smartphones that everybody already uses and carries around.