Android Wear

Here are Audi’s Open webOS and Android Wear watches in action

Here are Audi’s Open webOS and Android Wear watches in action

Audi’s foray into smartwatches has kicked off some confusion here at CES, over whether the car company is working on Open webOS or Android Wear. Turns out, the answer is "both". SlashGear sat down with Audi’s engineers responsible for both projects, to take a walk through the “Secure Key” project that will allow phones and smartwatches from multiple manufacturers to wirelessly start the car, locate it in distant parking lots, and even loan virtual keys to colleagues and friends. Read on for a full demo of both Audi’s LG Open webOS watch and its Android Wear counterpart.

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This is Audi’s custom car-controlling LG smartwatch

This is Audi’s custom car-controlling LG smartwatch

The automotive status symbol may no longer be the fob on your keyring but the smartwatch on your wrist, and we’ve got up close with the LG-made wearable Audi casually revealed during its CES keynote. R&D chief Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg used the watch to summon a self-driving Prologue to the stage, the touchscreen timepiece similar in appearance to LG’s existing circular-screened Android Wear model, but updated to suit the German marque’s automotive needs. Audi exclusively demonstrated the new smartwatch to SlashGear, and explained to me why it’s more than just a G Watch R with a custom skin.

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Hyundai Blue Link smartwatch app wrist-on

Hyundai Blue Link smartwatch app wrist-on

Smartwatches are popping up everywhere here at CES 2015, even in cars! As reported earlier, Hyundai is indeed bringing its Blue Link system to the showroom floor and it is bringing it to your wrist. The Android Wear incarnation of the app, as expected, lets you control certain functions of your Blue Link-enabled Hyundai car by talking to your wrist, which probably brings to mind many a spy or sci-fi show. We take a hands-on, or a wrist-on rather, tour of what Hyundai has in mind when it comes to wearables.

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Sony Smartwatch 3 Steel Edition hands-on

Sony Smartwatch 3 Steel Edition hands-on

While its innards aren't all that different from its original release, the Sony Smartwatch in Steel brings the heat with a body that's all-metal. It's Stainless Steel, high-quality looking and high-quality to the touch. This device still has a 1.6-inch "transflective" display so you'll have a slightly better viewing experience than you would with competing square Android Wear devices - outdoors, anyway. This display is 320 x 320 pixels tight, and with this metal band, the entire setup is a whole lot better a warrior in this wearable battle.

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Flappy Bird arrives on Android Wear

Flappy Bird arrives on Android Wear

Last summer we saw a game akin to Flappy Bird call "Flopsy Droid" arrive on Android Wear, and while it offered the same sort of tapping gameplay, it did so without the stoic flapping bird (you played as a flopping droid instead, obviously). If you're a purist at heart and see no issue with having a maddening endless game on your wrist, there is now a better version available: Flappy Bird itself in wearable form, courtesy of developer Corbin Davenport.

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Hyundai bringing Blue Link to Android Wear at CES

Hyundai bringing Blue Link to Android Wear at CES

“Checking the time, or starting the car?” People may start to wonder that about you if you drive a Hyundai and have Android Wear. At CES next week, Hyundai is set to announce an Android Wear app for their Blue Link technology. As if starting the car from your wrist wasn’t enough, there are other functions as well. You can find your car or lock your car with Blue Link, too. Perhaps even cooler, you can do it all via voice command.

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Alcatel Watch aims to low-end their smartwatch competition

Alcatel Watch aims to low-end their smartwatch competition

Wearable smart devices have not yet been known for extreme ease in ownership here in their early days on the market. Alcatel hopes to change the equation for cash exchanged for smart devices worn on your body with the Alcatel OneTouch Watch series. This series of devices works with very, very few details from the start - besides fancy hardware and the promise that you'll be able to connect to your Android device to make all the necessary readings and take photos, of course.

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Pebble now lets you interact via Android Wear notifications

Pebble now lets you interact via Android Wear notifications

With some slight variation, most smartwatches are essentially the same. The face shape and specs may change, but the overall interaction is equal, with notifications being the main reason people like them. One of the first smartwatches around, Pebble, has done a remarkable job staying relevant in the face of flashier options from Motorola, LG, and Apple. Now, your e-paper screen is getting a taste of Android Wear itself, with Pebble gaining the ability to show you Android Wear notifications.

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Android Wear “Lollipop” update brings brightness boost, ease in use

Android Wear “Lollipop” update brings brightness boost, ease in use

A new update is coming to Android Wear devices this week straight from Google. This update will bring Easier Navigation to smartwatch face UI, a set of new Modes (including Sunlight Mode for amped-up brightness), and App Improvements - including control from the smartwatch for notifications and additional per-app information in the Android Wear smartphone app. This system update will be released alongside a Google Play update with a new category: watch faces - over a dozen of them right off the bat.

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Android Wear watch faces hit Google Play

Android Wear watch faces hit Google Play

For the first time in the history of wearables, Google Play has its own wearables category for Android Wear - only it's not just dedicated to apps, it's made for watch faces. The "watch faces" category on Google Play will be launched today with dozens of "official" designer, artist, and brand-made watch faces for Android Wear devices. Google is also releasing new developer tools for Android Wear, including an official Watch Face API, so that additional watch faces can be made by all developers with great speed.

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