Google says upcoming Android Wear updates will bring GPS and Bluetooth support

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In an interview with CNET, Director of Engineering for Android Wear, David Singleton, and VP of Engineering, Hiroshi Lockheimer, revealed that Google is working on several updates for Android Wear that will go live before the end of this year. 

One such update that is scheduled to go out later this week will improve the navigation and voice command experience on Android Wear running watches.

Future updates to Android Wear will introduce GPS support for devices that have the required hardware and direct support for Bluetooth devices rather than relying on your smartphone to act as a bridge. While the GPS support will allow you to go out for a run without your smartphone, the latter will allow users to directly connect their Bluetooth headset to the smart watch and play music stored on it.

These features will also open up a host of possibilities including the ability to pair your Android Wear smartwatch with any other smart device on your body. Google is also working on an API to add support for third-party watch faces.

Regarding updates, the Android Wear team plans on rolling out frequent updates and iterate rapidly. The whole process will be much faster compared to Android updates on phones since Google does not have to deal with wireless carriers and only a limited number of hardware OEMs.

As for the ability to customize Android Wear by an OEMs, Singleton revealed that its hardware partners are free to add any sensors they want making the platform just as flexible as Android. On the software side though, OEMs are limited to either preinstalling apps or making them available as a downloadable app or service to the end users.

They can, however, still customize “every pixel” on the watch face, which when combined with other system hooks provides them with the flexibility to create their own customized user interface.

[Via CNET]