Google unveils Android Wear enhancements, releases full SDK to write native apps for wearables

Android Wear (teaser 001)

Google has kicked off its two-day conference for developers with a keynote address in San Francisco and we’re continuously covering major announcements to deliver you important news as it happens.

Company executes took to the stage to announce changes coming to Android Wear, Google’s platform for wearables based on Android that was previewed back in March

We live in a multi-screen world so Android L and Android Wear are both contextually aware, voice enabled, seamless and mobile first, Google said during the keynote.

It supports both rectangular and round screens and quickly shows you glanceable, contextually relevant information.

A live demo on LG’s upcoming G Watch showed off some interesting capabilities like vibrating notifications on a wearable device, swipable cards with watch pp and Google Now cards.

You can swipe a card away to remove it from your stream, tap and hold to choose a different watch face and more.

Android Wear (image 002)

Apps and notifications stay in sync across wearable and other devices so, say, taking a note on your smartphone or using GooGle Now to create a reminder will instantly make it available on your wearable devices, and vice versa. Likewise, clearing a notification on your Android-driven smartwatch makes it disappear on all your other devices.

Here’s an early Android Wear preview video from March.

Receiving a phone call or an incoming text messages puts up a notification on your smartphone, with a Do Not Disturb option available and additional options like canned responses.

Other features include turn-by-turn directions, a central repository where health and fitness apps can store user data such as calories burned, steps taken and so forth.

Android Wear (image 005)

It’s also nice that installing an app on an Android smartphone automatically installs its wearable portion on your wearable devices, with automatic app updates between devices and app states automatically kept in sync between the wearable and mobile portion of an app.

The Android Wear SDK allows developers to implement watch apps with features like notification pages, stacked multiple notifications, glanceable cards on the user stream and direct actions on a tiny smartwatch screen.

Android Wear (image 006)

The resulting code runs directly on a wearable device.

Last but not least, LG’s G watch and Samsung’s Gear Live will be available for order later today directly through the Google Play store. As for Motorola’s Moto 360, that gizmo will launch “later this summer,” said the Internet giant.

So, what do you guy think about Android Wear?

Should Apple be worried?