Google’s in a tough spot with Wear OS. It’s been four and half years since the operating system arrived as Android Wear, and while plenty of manufacturers have tried their hand at devices, the operating system has failed to make a large dent on the smart watch category. Apple continues to dominate the space, while top competitors Samsung and Fitbit have opted to go in-house with their operating systems.
In February, Android Wear got a modest 2.0 update, and the following month, the operating system got a full on rebrand. “We’re now Wear OS by Google, a wearables operating system for everyone,” the company said at the time. Even with all of that movement over the past year, Wear OS is still in need of an upgrade. By a number of early accounts, the 2.1 update, which is starting to roll out to user, is a strong step in that direction.
This latest version brings new swipe gestures, prioritizing notifications, settings, Google Fit and Assistant. Those last two are also getting some key upgrades, helping bring the company’s health and AI offerings up to speed with the competition.
While the smartwatch play has appeared fairly stagnant at times, it’s important to remember as Android celebrates its 10th anniversary, that the smartphone OS wasn’t exactly a rousing success out of the gate. In the meantime, Apple, Fitbit and the like have proven that smartwatches do have some staying power, and once again analysts are bullish on the category.
Earlier this month, meanwhile, Qualcomm reaffirmed its commitment to Wear OS by showcasing its chip architecture promising extended battery life. It seems as if enough players are involved and hopeful in Wear OS to keep it going, but there’s still a lot of work to be done if it’s going to break out of the looming shadow of the Apple Watch.
Android – TechCrunch
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Fear not, citizens — the law enforcement apparatus of California has apprehended or is hot on the trail of more than a dozen hardened criminals who boldly stole from the state’s favorite local business: Apple . Their unconscionable larceny amounted to more than a million dollars worth of devices stolen from Apple Stores — the equivalent of hundreds of iPhones.
The alleged thieves would wear hoodies into Apple stores — already suspicious, I know — and there they would snatch products on display and hide them in the ample pockets of those garments. Truly cunning.
These crimes took place in 19 different counties in California, the police forces of which all collaborated to bring the perpetrators to justice, though the San Luis Obispo and Oakland departments led the charge. So far seven of the thieves have been arrested, and nine more have warrants out.
In a press release, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra harangued his state regarding the dangers of the criminal element.
Organized retail thefts cost California business owners millions and expose them to copycat criminals. Ultimately, consumers pay the cost of this merchandise hijacking. We will continue our work with local law enforcement authorities to extinguish this mob mentality and prosecute these criminals to hold them accountable.
You hear that, would-be copycats? You hear that, assembling mob? Xavier’s gonna give it to you… if you don’t fly straight and stop trying to stick ordinary consumers with the costs of your crimes. Not to mention California businesses. With Apple paying that $ 15 billion in back taxes, it doesn’t have a lot of cash to spare for these shenanigans.
Well, I suppose it’s doing okay.
I’ve asked Apple for comment on this case and whether they participated or cooperated in it. Perhaps Face ID helped.
Gadgets – TechCrunch