Samsung has dashed hopes of an imminent Galaxy Watch 4 launch at its MWC 2021 virtual presentation a couple of hours ago. Instead the company used the opportunity to offer a peak into the upcoming operating system it is building with Google.
There have been lots of leaks leading up to the gathering. This includes renders which it has been claimed are an accurate representation of the upcoming Galaxy Watch.
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But Samsung has made it quite clear today. We won’t be getting the next Galaxy Watch until the Unpacked event later this summer. The company has not confirmed the actual date, but rumor has it the Galaxy Unpacked will fall on August 3rd.
And while we are not getting the watch just yet, Samsung has used today to present some more details on the operating system it will run on. This will be a combination of things.
One UI Watch user experience
As has been widely reported, this will be the new software the company is working on together with Google. It will bring the best of the two wearable platforms on one unified platform. The two companies have a long history of collaborating.
Fitbit is also expected to make a contribution. Oddly enough, however, there was no mention of the wearable manufacturer at today’s presentation.
The news here is that Samsung will be featuring its own One UI, layered on top of Google’s Wear OS. This means it will overlay its user interface on top of the new operating system. This is the user interface that can already be found on its smartphones. The idea is to bring the Samsung smartphone and smartwatch experience closer together.
Lots of improvements
As far as the detail, the presentation revealed the operating system Galaxy Watch 4 will run on is built to optimize performance. Part of this is stepping up responsiveness. Samsung says apps will load and start 30% faster.
More accurate and consistent sensor technology is also expected to be part of the package as is longer battery life. The latter will be enabled by smaller, lower-power cores.
As expected, there will be a much better ecosystem of apps. Users will be able to download and install Android apps on the watch directly from the Google Play store.
This will greatly expand on the number of apps you can choose from. Some of these will be able to connect online without a phone. That’s thanks to eSim support which is being expanded to more carriers.
Samsung says it will also make its watch-face tool available to Android developers. This will happen later this year. There will also be better integration with all Android phones.
Other improvements are also to be expected. For example, todays presentation showed how in the future smartphone apps on Galaxy phones will load on Galaxy watches. That will occur automatically if there is a corresponding watch app.
The same is the case with setting time zones, blocked numbers, etc on smartphones. The changes will sync automatically to the watch. So expect the Galaxy Watch and smartphones to be more deeply connected.
The first wearable to run on the new operating system will be the Galaxy Watch 4. Samsung didn’t mention it by name but it is widely expected to be the next smartwatch.
Bad news for owners of existing Samsung watches. They will not run the new software. However, Samsung said it will continue to offer software support for the existing platform for another 3 years. You can check out a recording of the full presentation on the link below.
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