Google launches Wear OS developer preview with Android P features

A few weeks after launching its Android P Developer Preview for smartphones, Google has rolled out a similar preview for Wear OS smartwatches.

Google today unleashed a Wear OS developer preview that brings Android P features to smartwatches. The preview brings with it the following features:

  • Restriction related to non-SDK methods and fields: Android P restricts access to non-SDK methods and fields to improve app compatibility.
  • Dark UI system theme: Wear OS uses a darker/black background for the notifications stream and system launcher to improve glanceability, and this is now the default system theme and should improve glanceability for apps, too.
  • Limited background activity: Apps will no longer be allowed to run in the background unless the watch is on a charger. This move will help to improve power consumption.
  • Turning off radios when off body: When the watch detects that it’s not being worn for an extended period of time, it’ll turn off the Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and cellular radios to improve power consumption.
  • Wi-Fi off when Bluetooth is disconnected: The watch will no longer automatically connect to Wi-Fi when disconnected from Bluetooth to help improve power consumption.

The Wear OS developer preview is now available. It includes system images in the official Android Emulator and downloadable system images for the Huawei Watch 2 and Huawei Watch 2 Classic.

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