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Google launches Wear OS developer preview including Android P

In the Wear OS developer preview, Google is including a dark theme and smart battery saving features.
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Written by Jake Smith, Contributing Writer on

Google announced on Wednesday the new Wear OS preview is now available to developers for testing on wearable devices. The Wear OS developer preview includes Android P platform features, alongside a new dark mode to enhance glanceability for the notifications stream and system launcher.

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Google is launching a Wear OS developer preview today. (Image: Google)

Included in the new Wear OS preview are battery saving features for Android wearables. Google detailed in a blog post:

To improve power, apps will no longer be allowed to run in the background unless the watch is on the charger. Developers should note that Wear OS is going further with Android's app standby feature than some other form factors. Exceptions to this include watch faces and complications that the user currently has selected. This feature will be rolled out gradually in the developer preview, so you may not see it immediately on your device, but should build your apps accordingly by removing background services.

Google is now rolling out the developer preview to the Huawei Watch 2 Bluetooth or Huawei Watch 2 Classic Bluetooth. It notes the preview isn't intended for daily or customer use -- only developers. The update is available via manual update or flash.

Earlier this month, Google rebranded Android Wear to Wear OS. At the time, Google also promised new features and updates "in the coming weeks and months." Makes sense -- Google's developer conference is in May where it will probably share a lot more on its wearable plans.

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