YouTube Music app finally lets you stream music on Wear OS – but limits iOS in one key way
YouTube Music on Wear OS is finally able to stream music over LTE and Wi-Fi.
Previously, you had to download an entire playlist to your smartwatch in order to listen to music. In a recent community post, Google explained that users will now have access to over 80 million songs and thousands of playlists on the YouTube Music platform.
As part of the update, the app now comes with Smart Downloads, which refreshes downloaded songs every time your device connects to Wi-Fi. This way, your music doesn’t get interrupted when it’s playing. change connection.
A new YouTube Music tile will be added to Wear OS for quick access to recent playlists or browse page. On top of that, the revamped software will offer tailored playlists based on your history.
This all sounds like great news and a nice addition to Wear OS, but there’s one pretty big caveat. According to Google, you must subscribe to YouTube Music Premium. Otherwise, you cannot use these features and are stuck with the old way of downloading playlists.
Wear OS on iOS supports Wi-Fi streaming capability but does not support LTE. Google hasn’t said if or when LTE connectivity will make its way to iOS. The YouTube Music update is just starting to roll out to Wear OS. Instructions on how to stream music are available at Google’s community page.
Analysis: is it too late?
Considered an underdog by Google, Wear OS is getting a ton of new features and new hardware in the near future. Recently, Google revealed the Pixel Watch during IO 2022. Not much is officially known about the Pixel Watch other than a vague “fall 2022” launch window (so September-November and exclusive for Android devices.
The device was highly anticipated before its reveal, with several leaks occurring in the weeks leading up to the announcement.
Additionally, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 will receive many new software updates seen at IO 2022. These changes include the revamped Google Wallet, which now supports payment cards, and connectivity with the new Google Assistant.
While it’s good to see Google taking more interest in smartwatches and Wear OS, it raises the question of whether this wave of support is too late.
As far as we know, none of the smartwatch brands like Fossil will benefit from Google’s new features. Meanwhile, Apple Watch users are over 100 million and growing. If Google wants a bigger stake in the smartwatch industry, it has its work cut out for it.