GOOGLE HAS formally announced a rebrand of its wearables platform from Android Wear to the more generic Wear OS by Google.
The move, first rumoured earlier this week, at this stage is largely cosmetic and anyone expecting Android Wear 3.0 will be somewhat disappointed.
But to look at it another way, this is a renewing of vows between Google and wearables and the company has promised that there will be more news on features and updates in the coming months - with I/O still expected to be the first reveal.
With no major watch launches for some time from the big tech firms, and only Huawei committing to a new device being even planned, Google needed to do something that would revitalise Android Wear's image.
The change of name to Wear OS will emphasise that Wear OS devices work across devices and are not just for Android phone users.
The Google Blog explains: "As our technology and partnerships have evolved, so have our users. In 2017, one out of three new Android Wear watch owners also used an iPhone.
"So as the watch industry gears up for another Baselworld next week, we're announcing a new name that better reflects our technology, vision, and most important of all—the people who wear our watches. We're now Wear OS by Google, a wearables operating system for everyone."
Baselworld is the world's largest watch and jewellery show, held in Basel, Switzerland every year. The reference suggests we might even see some new devices there too.
It's not the first time that Google has tried to remove branding in this way. Chromecast was briefly rechristened as Google Cast, but the Chromecast name was already so entrenched, eventually it was switched back.
A number of watches will be getting an ‘upgrade' to the Wear OS branding. These including models from Huawei, LG, Casio, Mobvoi, Polar, ZTE , Misfit and many of the oh-so-trendy fashion branded watches. All these watches are likely to be running Android 8.0 Oreo, if not before, then after the rebrand. µ
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