We were expecting Samsung to possibly announce a new smartwatch today, but while it didn’t, we learned more about Samsung’s new One UI Watch wearable operating system. This is based on the new software coming to Wear OS later this year that was developed in conjunction with Google that was announced at Google I/O 2021.
During the event, Samsung showed off some of the new features that will be coming to One UI Watch when it arrives. As for what we can expect to be able to do, you’ll be able to download an app to your phone and have the app automatically installed onto your Galaxy Watch, which improves the communication between the Watch and your smartphone. Samsung showed off some of the redesigned apps that will be coming, including Google Maps, YouTube Music, and Google Messages. But the biggest addition for Samsung smartwatches is the ability to download apps that were not available through the old Tizen-powered app store.
“Samsung and Google have a long history of collaboration and whenever we’ve worked together, the experience for our consumers has been dramatically better for everyone.”
– Sameer Samat, Vice President of Product Management, Android and Wear, Google
Samsung is also launching a new watch face design tool for designers and developers in order to create new, fun, and interactive watch faces. These will integrate your built-in apps, along with anything else that you may find yourself downloading in the future.
Unfortunately, Samsung stopped short of showing off too much of the new interface. Instead, we were greeted with a few examples of the different apps that are coming, along with a redesigned app drawer for upcoming Samsung smartwatches.
What was confirmed, albeit indirectly, was the fact that One UI Watch is going to be a skin laid on top of the upcoming Wear OS software. This is not all that surprising, given that One UI is a different interface entirely while still being built on top of Google’s version of stock Android. So all this means is that there’s still a lot that we have left to learn about the upcoming wearable operating system.
Finally, Samsung confirmed that its next Galaxy Watch will be the first Samsung wearable to be running this new One UI Watch software. But instead of showing off the new smartwatch(es), Samsung only stated that the upcoming watch will be coming at an unannounced Unpacked event later this year.