Google has taken the wraps off "Android Wear," a wearable platform that will bring the familiar Android OS to wearable devices.
While Google yesterday did not identify specific wearables for development, industry sources said Google plans to start with that familiar icon of wearables—the smartwatch. Google has a neat demo video showing how notifications and speaking commands work on Android Wear.
Android Wear is basically Google Now for the rest of your body and complements Google Glass. Google Now, the company's popular virtual assistant software, will play a big role in Android Wear by providing information on weather and flight times, for example. Users will also be able to voice search by saying "OK Google."
Android Wear will also be able to control other devices, and will enable all kinds of new actions just as smartphones did. An exciting development is a multi-screen function that lets a user control what he wants through his smart watch. A user will receive the latest posts from his favorite social networking sites and messaging apps.
The platform features full support for fitness and vitality sensors, providing real-time speed, distance and time information for cardio workouts.
Google probably plans to launch Android Wear later this year. Analysts, however, speculate that the product could be launched as early as the second quarter.
Google confirmed that ASUS, LG, Samsung, HTC and Motorola have come on board as OEMs. Chipsets will come from Intel, Broadcom, Mediatek, and Qualcomm. Google has also partnered with Fossil to bring fashion into the product.