Gears & Gadgets

Wear OS Redesign Offers Easy Access to Health, Help Features

Wear OS Redesign

Google is redesigning its smartwatch operating system to offer easier access to health and help features.

“We’re evolving the design of Wear OS by Google to help you get the most out of your time—providing quicker access to your information and notifications, more proactive help from the Google Assistant, and smarter health coaching—all with a swipe of your finger,” Wear OS Product Management Director Dennis Troper wrote in a Wednesday blog post. Google plans to roll out these new features over the next month.

Accessing all your notifications in the new user interface is as easy as swiping up. The update also lets you use Google’s Smart Reply feature to respond to messages right from your notification stream. If, for instance, someone sends you a message saying “Leaving now, see you soon,” Google may suggest you respond with “Great see you soon.” If you like that response, simply tap it to send. Swiping down on your watch will offer easy access to other useful features, such as Google Pay and “Find my phone.”

When you want to start a workout or track your progress towards your Move Minutes and Heart Points rings, just swipe left. Announced last week, Move Minutes tracks activities like walking or climbing stairs while Heart Points are earned for “moderate” or “intense” activities like walking briskly, running, or kickboxing. Google designed these new smart activity goals in collaboration with the American Heart Association and the World Health Organization.

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Finally, to access Google Assistant, just swipe right.

“When you’re getting ready for the day, your Google Assistant will help you stay ahead by reminding you to bring an umbrella, showing you your day’s meetings, or warning you if there is a delay on your commute,” Troper wrote. If you’re traveling that day, Assistant will show your flight status, hotel reservation information, and “smart suggestions” you may want to check out such as the weather at your destination and restaurants near your hotel.

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