I used to relish the perplexed looks I got from people as I swiped and chuckled at my smartwatch, now people barely give it a second glance. That alone goes to show how much the perception of smartwatches has changed.
They’ve become slightly less of a niche product and are slowly inching towards becoming more mainstream.
The greatest hurdle that smartwatches have had to overcome is their dependence on smartphones. Without being tethered to your smartphone, smartwatches have been not so smart, until now that is.
Less than a week ago, my G Watch R received an update that finally allowed it to store and playback music on the watch. The update also brought the ability to connect your watch to a Wi-Fi network, allowing it to receive notifications and perform certain functions without relying on your watch’s data connection. This means that you can now use your watch without your smartphone, to a certain degree.
In order to download music to your watch, you will need to have it on your phone and then sync which tracks you’d like to download to your watch.
The update has also brought weather, an improved heart rate sensor and the ability to send messages directly to the watch face of a friend who also has an Android Wear device.
Will all of these features be enough to help Google hold its own in the burgeoning wearables market? Only time will tell.