While we await Android Wear 5.1.1 to roll out on a wider scale, we had the opportunity to try the update out on the LG Watch Urbane. Google’s wearable platform has seen its fair share of incremental updates over the past several months, but this one is by far the biggest. You want Wi-Fi support? Done. An always-on screen? That’s here, too. Let’s take a look at what else is new.
With something like always-on apps, Google is making Android Wear easier to use than ever. You no longer have to tap, twist or use a gesture to bring your watch’s screen to life. With the feature turned on, apps will stay visible on your wrist rather than disappearing when you drop your wrist. So if you need Maps to stay up for navigation, it won’t disappear when Android Wear thinks your done.
The cool part of this feature is that whatever app you’re using will be in full color and animated when you’re looking at it—and go black and white when you’re not. This will ensure your battery doesn’t drain, while still keeping what you need accessible at all times.
Additionally, the newest update also has Wi-Fi support, so as long as you’re on Wi-Fi (and your phone is connected to Wi-Fi or data) you’ll be able to get notifications, send messages, etc. This is an awesome feature, especially if you happen to leave your phone at home. So long as your Android Wear device is strapped to your wrist, you’ll be able to communication if you’re on a Wi-Fi network.
There are some other cool features, too, such as the ability to flick your wrist to scroll through the UI, the ability to draw emoji, and more. Check out the video above to see the newest Android Wear update in action.
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