Google Wear is Coming to Fitbit and Samsung Devices

Google announced today that it is collaborating with Samsung to bring the best of Wear and Tizen into what it calls a single, unified platform that will work on existing and future devices from both companies and from third parties.

“By working together we have been able to take strengths of each and combine them into an experience that has faster performance, longer battery life, and more of the apps you love available for the watch,” Google’s Bjorn Kilburn explains. “Apps start up to 30 percent faster on the latest chipsets with smooth user interface animations and motion. To achieve longer battery life, we’ve worked to optimize the lower layers of the operating system. Finally, our unified platform will make it easier for developers to build great apps for the watch.”

This combination answers the many questions that fans have been asking about the future of Google Wear in the wake of Google’s Fitbit acquisition. And it looks like Wear has won out over Fitbit’s OS on the platform side, though of course Google will bring Fitbit’s services to the new unified platform. It also answers some questions about the future of Samsung’s wearable products, which to date have used Tizen instead of Wear.

“Google Maps and Google Assistant are being redesigned and improved,” Kilburn continues. “Google Pay will also be redesigned and add support for 26 new countries, beyond the 11 countries currently available. YouTube Music will also arrive on Wear later this year, equipped with features like smart downloads for subscribers to enjoy music while on the go. [And] health and fitness tracking is essential for wearables. With the latest Wear update, we welcome Fitbit’s many years of health expertise to the experience. The best of Fitbit, including features like tracking your health progress throughout your day and on-wrist goal celebrations, will motivate you on your journey to better health.”

Google says that the new Wear will roll out later this year.

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Conversation 16 comments

  • Chris_Kez

    Premium Member
    18 May, 2021 - 4:07 pm

    <p>Bringing together "the best of Wear and Tizen"… what was that quote about two turkeys?</p>

    • wolters

      Premium Member
      18 May, 2021 - 6:20 pm

      <p>I prefer WearOS but Tizen has been more refined and I’ve preferred Galaxy Watch so this is good news. I just hope it works to fruition. </p>

  • codymesh

    18 May, 2021 - 4:20 pm

    <p>I predict that this will turn into a mess. But anything for Google to get a competitor off the market, I guess.</p>

  • jgraebner

    Premium Member
    18 May, 2021 - 5:03 pm

    <p>This sounds like really good news as Samsung and Fitbit’s watches have been faster and much more reliable than Google’s, but have really struggled to get third party support. </p>

  • crunchyfrog

    Premium Member
    18 May, 2021 - 5:54 pm

    <p>I must have missed something. Android Wear became WearOS and now it’s called Google Wear? It really doesn’t matter how many times they change it, Samsung can’t get traction and Google couldn’t care less about it’s wearables so why not team up and let Sammy drive it.</p>

    • wolters

      Premium Member
      18 May, 2021 - 6:25 pm

      <p>I respectfully disagree. I see a lot of Galaxy Watches out there…even took a recent plane trip and saw an iPhone user using a Galaxy watch. I think they have traction but they realize the importance of a unified operating system for "Non" Apple Watch OSes. </p>

      • crunchyfrog

        Premium Member
        19 May, 2021 - 10:07 am

        <p>I did not mean that Samsung made a bad watch, mainly pointing out that Google is not steering the ship here for wearables. I also have a Galaxy watch but as an iPhone user, Apple has so restricted third party wearables that as good as Galaxy watches are the experience is greatly diminished on iPhone.</p>

  • dcdevito

    18 May, 2021 - 7:56 pm

    <p>”Two turkeys don’t make an eagle”</p><p><br></p><p>-Tim Cook</p>

  • rmlounsbury

    Premium Member
    18 May, 2021 - 8:16 pm

    <p>I’m fascinated that Google bought Fitbit and appear to be kicking Fitbit OS to the curb. </p><p><br></p><p>I’m not a fan of Samsung’s smartwatch platform but maybe when it’s fused with Google Wear it’ll be a fine platform? I went back to Apple Watch and am going to stick with that platform unless we seem some really great stuff from those two when the next watch recycle comes. </p><p><br></p><p>If nothing else Samsung must be pleased with their positioning. Their Tizen platform is being integrated with Google Wear and Samsung gets to march around as the preferred platform for Microsoft connectivity between Android &amp; Windows. Pretty good spot they are in. </p>

    • bservies

      19 May, 2021 - 1:04 am

      <p>Those engineering teams have new product metrics to meet. Who cares if they stop shipping in 6 months?</p>

    • Paul Thurrott

      Premium Member
      19 May, 2021 - 8:54 am

      Yeah. I’m curious that there was no mention at all of integrating "the best of Fitbit OS" into the new Wear. Maybe it was found to be lacking.

      • wolters

        Premium Member
        20 May, 2021 - 2:10 pm

        <p>And it is interesting that the rumor is they will use Samsung Health. Samsung Health isn’t bad but odd they would choose it over the Fitbit "health ecosystem."</p>

  • mixedfarmer75

    Premium Member
    19 May, 2021 - 1:12 am

    <p>This should help. FitBit and Galaxy watches were very functional, but lacked app support. Wear OS sounds like the reverse. Maybe between the two….Hopefully developers get on board.</p>

  • csteinblock

    19 May, 2021 - 11:16 am

    <p>My wife and I both have Samsung watches, with tizen of course. They work fine, but apps! There are none!</p><p><br></p><p>The article says wear will be coming to older devices. I can’t find any info on what that means. If they can upgrade my tizen to wear os…wow!</p>

    • jgraebner

      Premium Member
      19 May, 2021 - 4:58 pm

      <p>I’m pretty sure I saw where Samsung said that none of their existing watches would be upgradable to the new OS.</p>

      • wolters

        Premium Member
        20 May, 2021 - 2:16 pm

        <p>Yes that is true…and I wonder, beyond the FDA, if this is what has held up Blood Pressure Monitoring on the Galaxy Watch. It has been promised since GW3 was launched. </p>


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