Android Wear 2.0 Developer Preview Brings New, Highly-Sought Features to Wearable Tech

Android Wear 2.0The Android development team has just released the new Developer Preview for Android Wear 2.0. The kit primarily focuses on ensuring app developers have a solid opportunity to investigate the software in order to adjust and update their applications accordingly.

Of course, Google readily points out that this is still a work in progress and users should definitely not expect to see this launch. Indeed, many things need to change before the consumer release is ready for operations.

With any update comes fixes to the previous version. This is one of the major features most were looking forward to and are definitely excited about this time around. Unfortunately, the original Android Wear had many issues during its initial launch. Fortunately, Google/Android has a lot of fans, and the popularity of the software—in devices like the Moto 360—has encouraged many to overlook these problems. Early adopters often approach new projects knowing that there will be bumps in the road.

4 Things to Know

With this update, Google says, “Since last year, users have been able to scroll through the notification stream via wrist gestures. We have now opened this system to developers to use within their applications. This helps improve single hand usage, for when your users need their other hand to hold onto their shopping [bags] or the kids.”

And so, here are a few things you need to know about the new Android Wear release:

First, Google incremented Android Platform API version 24 to match the Android Nougat (Android OS v7). This means that developers need to use the API24 in their Android Studio projects which target Android Wear 2.0. Basically, this means that new Android Wear devices can handle stand-alone apps as well as internal ones.

Secondly, the update enhances the wearable drawers that debuted in Android Wear 2.0 Preview 1. Of course, there is now additional support for the wearable drawing peeking feature, making it easier for users to access drawers while scrolling.

Third, the Android Wear Developer Preview 2 adds more wrist gesture options. More importantly, the update allows developers to use wrist gestures in their own applications. This is also in addition to new methods for messaging—something that may encourage more users, users who may be deterred from messaging on such a small screen.

Fourth, Android Wear Developer Preview 2.0 brings many other UI improvements. This includes an automatic preview option, navigation drawer closure, and primary action peek view features.

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