We’ve already seen several rumors about the upcoming Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 and Galaxy Watch 5 Pro smartwatches, and today, we get to see some new watch faces and upcoming features. According to a new leak, the Galaxy Watch 5 series will be running One UI Watch 4.5, and they’ll come with new accessibility features, and a QUERTY keyboard interface.
Several new tweets from Evan Blass, also known as @evleaks on Twitter, show new watch faces and new functionality built-in the Samsung One UI 4.5 watches, based on Wear OS 3.5. The new watch faces resemble those shown on the Galaxy Watch 4 series, and we also find a few new ones.
According to the new screenshots, here are three new features you’ll be able to find on the new Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 series of smartwatches, and possibly also on the Galaxy Watch 4 series. First, it’s the new QWERTY keyboard interface, which will now display three methods for inputting text. Users will be able to choose from dictation, keyboard, and handwriting. It looks like a tweaked Swiftkey interface, optimized for smartwatches, and it seems easy and simple to use.
The Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 series didn’t allow the users to change the SIM lines from the owner’s device, and it had to be done manually on the phone itself. On the next version, users can select from SIM 1 or SIM 2 options, right on their wrists. Before making a call, the user will be offered a chance to choose between the SIM cards installed on the device, simplifying the interface, and removing the action of pulling out the smartphone.
Last but not least, there are new accessibility options to choose from. As a software engineer, I always found it essential to optimize software that could suit everyone, and I’m glad to see these features make it onto smartwatches. Users can double press the home button to active TalkBack, which will read aloud all content displayed on the screen.
There’s also a left/right audio balance feature, a color correction tool, and a tap-hold setting that allows users to change how quickly the watch responds to taps. Additionally, there’s a new accessibility shortcut, allowing users to quickly get to the menu by double-pressing the home button.
These are some excellent new additions to the Wear OS system, and it shows that Google hasn’t given up on the platform just yet. We hope to see more accessibility features and options in settings, enabling users to fully customize their devices to their liking and their needs.
The current state of Wear OS 3
Wear OS 3, as it stands, is still exclusive to the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 smartwatches, and soon to the joining Galaxy Watch 5 series, and the recently unveiled Montblanc Summit 3 premium watch. Existing smartwatches should be receiving the update in the coming months, and new smartwatches should be announced with the new operating system later this year, including the Google Pixel Watch.
The current list of supported devices is very slim, and it only includes five smartwatches, including the Montblanc Summit 3. Wear OS 3 should launch “in mid to second half of 2022”, and we’re excited to see what manufacturers manage to make out of the most advanced Android OS to date. The new platform will offer an entirely new platform for smartwatches, and if the Galaxy Watch 4 is any indication on what to expect, we should have our hopes up. The new system improves the features and functionality of devices, and we can’t wait to test out better Apple Watch competitors.