“Hey Google” hotword isn’t working on Wear OS, but Google says it’s working on a fix

Ricky, 25 February 2021

On Wednesday, a report from 9to5Google brought attention to a feature on Wear OS that hasn’t been working for months, according to a thread on Google’s Issue Tracker. Google has now responded that it is “aware of the issues some users have been encountering”. Google has also noted that it will “address these and improve the overall experience” with its partner OEMs.

Using the “Hey Google” hotword should summon Google Assistant on a Wear OS smartwatch while the screen is active. However, despite the feature toggled on in the Assistant’s settings, it won’t respond for a command. You can still summon Google Assistant by long-pressing the watch’s button, but Wear OS is intended to be able to give Assistant a command with the wake word as well.

Mobvoi TicWatch Pro 4G LTE (2019) Mobvoi TicWatch Pro 4G LTE (2019) running Wear OS

Wear OS has so much potential and there are dozens of attractive smartwatches that launch every year that sport the platform. It seems that these OEMs are at the mercy of Google to really put effort behind the wearable operating system.

Wear OS’s latest update H MR1 is based on Android 9 Pie, but Google is expected to release a new update based on Android 11 sometime this year. With Google’s completed acquisition of Fitbit from a few weeks ago, the company may be crunching to incorporate its new assets into the next Wear OS update.

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Reader comments

  • John

Probably the most discerning negative to my Brand New Android WearOS Fossil is battery life. After using it for 10 minutes, expect battery life to drop 20%. I can’t even understand if the battery life is accurate because it’s so poor. The irony ...

  • RJ

You can’t even get the scores to Yankees games or any sporting games. Pictures will not show up from searches. Cant send texts using Assistant. The Google Assistant on WearOS is painfully and excruciatingly awful. In this regard, I much prefer ...

  • John

It’s really embarrassing. How can the Google Assistant be so fantastic on Pixel but worthless on my Fossil Gen 5 WearOS.

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