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Android Wear 5.1.1 update goes out to select watches, spread may take weeks

Formally announced roughly a month ago and pre-installed on the luxury new LG Watch Urbane, the firmware finally begins its wider-scale release.

Android Wear Wi-Fi

If we didn’t know any better, we’d say Google waited for Apple’s first big move on the wearable chessboard before unleashing a vicious attack on the “iWatch.” Or maybe it’s just a giant coincidence the Apple Watch, Asus ZenWatch, LG G Watch and LG G Watch R are getting near-simultaneous OTA software updates.

Nuh-uh, we see what you did there, Big G, and we’re down with it. Why not rub your platform’s superiority in iFans’ faces… while you still can? Knowing Cupertino, their OS will soon eclipse at least Android Wear’s stability, so no wonder Mountain View is currently in seize the day mode.

As always, patience is the key word when it comes to Google-dispatched software makeovers, with the 5.1.1W rollout set to happen “gradually in the coming days and weeks.” Alas, the number one enhancement brought to the table, standalone Wi-Fi support, will only enrich the functionality of the Moto 360, Sony SmartWatch 3 and Samsung Gear Live in addition to the LG Watch Urbane.

Android Wear 5.1.1

That’s perhaps the very reason the non-Wi-Fi-capable ZenWatch, G Watch and G Watch R have scored the earlier invites to the 5.1.1 party, their changelog highlights merely including always-on apps, new wrist gestures, handwritten emoji conversion, heads-up notifications and font size adjustment.

Still a pretty big deal, if you ask us, especially considering how badly the OS needs practical, palpable improvements users can benefit from.

Back to the Wi-Fi headed for the platform’s best, let’s emphasize that doesn’t enable independent wrist web access, but simply lets you pair your intelligent timepiece to your phone from a distance. No more relying on restrictive Bluetooth, now cloud sync is the name of the game.

Sources: Google, Android Police

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