From health monitors and fitness trackers, Smartwatches have come a long way since the early 2010s. Almost every tech company has sunk its teeth into the wearables market with the likes of Google, Apple, and Samsung as well as traditional watch brands such as Tissot, Fossil and Swatch.
While Apple still leads the market share of Smartwatches in the US and Canada with its Apple Watch, it’s still an iOS exclusive device that requires an iPhone and works well in the Apple Ecosystem. That’s where Android comes into play, with it’s Wear OS, that powers most of the wearables produced by other Smartwatch manufacturers other than Samsung (We will get more into that later) and a few others.
What is Wear OS?
Formerly known as Android Wear back in 2014-2018 before changing its name to Wear OS. Wear OS runs on most Smartwatches due to a large number of supported devices as well as the ease of manufacturing as companies do not need to worry about the software part of their device as Google has done the work for them. You can find Wear OS running on newer Smartwatch brands like Misfit, and Ticwatch to more traditional brands such as Kate Spade, Fossil, and Montblanc, among many others.
Over the years, Google has been working on optimizing the software and making it work well for smartwatches in different sizes and features. It’s Google Fit app and other Google services work well depending on the device you own. With the right hardware, you can enjoy the Google play store and the apps that come with it such as Google Pay, Spotify, Youtube Music, Maps, and many others to get the full potential of your wearable.
However, despite it being the main operating system in many Smartwatch brands, Wear OS falls behind its big competitors which are no other than Apple and Samsung, which runs on Watch OS and Tizen OS respectively and are currently the top 2 companies in the wearables market.
Google’s latest acquisition of the Fitbit, which is currently the third best selling wearables brand is just the push they need to catch up with the competition. While Apple’s Watch OS is still way ahead, Google now has a chance of going after Samsung’s Tizen OS.
Check out the best Wear OS Smartwatches.
What is Tizen OS?
From Samsungs Smart TVs to budget phones, and to wearables, the proprietary Linux based-Tizen OS is seen on most Samsung smart devices. The reason Samsung went with its own system instead of using Google’s Wear OS is the same reason why Apple and Hua Wei did it; it pairs well with the devices in the ecosystem that surrounds its Smartwatch and phone.
Tizen OS provides Android users something more, and less at the same time. For starters, the rotating bezel feature works surprisingly well on the Tizen OS to fit the hardware on the Galaxy watches. Although there is a similar feature on Wear OS, the Tizen-based rotating bezel is way better, and users love the feature which provides a smoother experience when using the Smartwatch.
If you are not a Samsung user, then this operating system will have some drawbacks. With the first one being the lack of Google store so you might miss out on some of the apps. However, Samsung has worked well with app developers and has been updating its store to make sure users are getting an adequate amount of apps that are commonly used with wearables.
If you don’t mind Bixby over Google assistant, Samsung Pay over Google Pay, Here Maps over Google Maps, and are into the Samsung ecosystem, the Tizen OS is a perfect match for you. Not to mention you will be getting a much smoother and better-looking UI than the current Watch OS.
Check out the best Tizen OS Smartwatches.
With the current condition of both Operating Systems, Tizen OS seems to be the better of the both in terms of overall performance, and UI.
Until we see improvements in Wear OS, if Google services are not a top priority, and if you are willing to forgo certain applications such as Google Assistant and Google Pay, Samsung’s Tizen OS Smartwatches will be the go-to choice for most Android users.