Android Wear 2.0 Coming in February, Following Delays

Alex Spencer

AndroidWear20WatchesAndroid Wear 2.0, the first major update to Google's wearables OS since it was first introduced in 2014, is due to finally launch in February.

When the 2.0 update was announced at Google I/O last May, it had a targeted release date of autumn 2016. After negative feedback to the developer preview, however, it was pushed back into this year.

The February launch date was revealed in an email sent to developers by Google, which highlighted the addition of a Play Store on the watch itself, rather than the current method, which requires the user to download apps through a paired smartphone.

Other features set to be added in Wear 2.0 include standalone apps with direct network access to cloud services, meaning they are able to function without a mobile device; expanded notifications showing a greater amount of information at a glance; and improved text input tools, enabling users to reply to messages using an on-watch keyboard or handwriting recognition.

Reports have suggested that the update might add payments, though this hasn't been confirmed by Google.