Android P features arrive on Wear OS for developers

Google has released a Wear OS developer preview that includes features from its upcoming Android P software update.

Writing on its Android Developer's Blog, the search giant revealed some of the key features coming to the Android wristwear platform, including a default Dark UI for better "glanceability for wear apps" and the end of background activity for apps unless your watch is on charge.

The latter is aimed at improving performance and battery life of Wear OS smartwatches, so we're hoping we'll see the wearables consistently last longer than two days on a single charge.

If you take the watch off your wrist for an extended time, the new Wear OS software will detect this and turn off Wi-Fi, Bluetooth and cellular radios to help further improve battery life.

Not for you

If you like the sound of what the developer preview is offering then hold up, as Google says "this initial release is intended for developers only and is not for daily or consumer use. Therefore, it is only available via manual download and flash."

It's also only available as "a downloadable system image for the Huawei Watch 2 Bluetooth or Huawei Watch 2 Classic Bluetooth" which again somewhat limits the reach of this software.

There's no word on when we will the final release of this Wear OS update, but Google may reveal more at its I/O 2018 conference in May.

John McCann
Global Managing Editor

John joined TechRadar over a decade ago as Staff Writer for Phones, and over the years has built up a vast knowledge of the tech industry. He's interviewed CEOs from some of the world's biggest tech firms, visited their HQs and has appeared on live TV and radio, including Sky News, BBC News, BBC World News, Al Jazeera, LBC and BBC Radio 4. Originally specializing in phones, tablets and wearables, John is now TechRadar's resident automotive expert, reviewing the latest and greatest EVs and PHEVs on the market. John also looks after the day-to-day running of the site.