Google’s commitment to Wear OS has been cast into doubt because of the lack of development and improvement before Wear OS 3 was announced last month. It also seemed like Google was snubbing its own wearable platform when something as basic as a YouTube Music app was unavailable on Wear OS while ironically present on Apple’s competing watchOS. That finally changed with Wear OS 3, but only for the extremely small number of smartwatches. Thankfully, that has now changed, and YouTube Music is going out to even more and older Wear OS devices.
Listening to music with your smartwatch might not sound like the greatest idea, but it’s actually a popular and much-requested feature for wearable devices. The reason is often to leave phones behind while going for a run, for example, especially if the smartwatch is capable of connecting to the Internet on its own via LTE. There are some music streaming services that try to address this use case, but YouTube Music was strangely absent from Google’s own smartwatch platform.
When Google did finally bring YouTube Music to Wear OS, its availability was severely limited. First, it was compatible only with Wear OS 3, which limited it only to the new Samsung Galaxy Watch 4. It then expanded to include newer smartwatches that ran on the latest Snapdragon Wear 4100 and 4100+ chipsets, which only covered the Mobvoi TicWatch 3 generation, Fossil Gen 6, and Michael Kors Access Gen 6 devices.
According to 9to5Google, the last barriers are finally being removed. The latest update to the YouTube Music app on Google Play Store makes it compatible with Wear OS smartwatches running on the Snapdragon Wear 3100 processor. That covers the majority of smartwatches in the past year or two, which finally brings YouTube Music home at long last.
With the YouTube Music Wear OS app, users can download music for offline listening, presuming they have the Premium subscription required for that feature in the first place. That should be a great help to owners of smartwatches that didn’t have LTE modems back in those days. It would definitely be great if Google could also bring Wear OS 3 to these smartwatches, but only time will tell if it’s even possible at all.