As it stands right now, most smartwatches aren’t considered standalone devices. Rather, they’re hardware that complements the mini computers that we carry around in our pocket. Google will slowly change that, however, as the company has signaled that they are working on updates that will allow their Android Wear hardware to become self-reliant.
The future update, according to Google, will arrive later this year, and will expand on some features when the wearables are not connected to a smartphone. One of the updates will make use of the wearable’s internal storage and Bluetooth radio by letting users store music files locally and transmitting audio to a Bluetooth headset.
Another update which most of us will find useful is enabling GPS support for wearables with the right hardware. Going for a jog or hunting down a local eatery won’t be a two-gadget job. With GPS functionalities enabled, the smartwatch will utilize its onboard GPS sensor to do the navigation and the smartphone can stay on battery-saving mode.