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Wear OS 3 to support third party assistants, including Samsung Bixby

By Roland Udvarlaki August 4, 2021, 5:00 am
Wear OS by Google and Samsung Bixby support assistants

Google and Samsung didn’t reveal much information about how deep their partnership is when they announced the newly redesigned Wear OS 3.0. As it turns out, Wear OS 3 brings a ton of new features, enhancements, and a number of improvements, including the support of having third-party smart assistants such as Samsung Bixby.

Wear OS 3 is bringing many improvements and changes to the “unified platform” of Wear OS, running Android 11 and Samsung’s Tizen operating system. We’ll finally get a glance at the new operating system later this month, as Samsung is expected to announce its first Galaxy Watch 4 series running the new “One UI Watch” platform.


Up until now, you only had one choice of smart assistants on your Wear OS smartwatches, and it was Google Assistant. This was usually triggered by a long-press on the “crown” gesture to get it activated. It now looks like Wear OS will either let third-party developers pre-load their own smart assistants, or Samsung is getting a special treatment for their collaboration of making Wear OS actually something usable. SnoopyTech has recently mentioned that the Galaxy Watch 4 series would support both the Google Assistant and Samsung Bixby, presumable only one at a time.

The team over at 9to5Google taken a closer look at the Wear OS app, and they found a few “references to a package name that points to Google supporting an alternate assistant on wearables.”


9to5Google was unable to get their hands on this new “alternative_assistant,” but as it stands right now, the report is likely true, and Wear OS will indeed support Samsung Bixby. It remains to be seen whether other voice assistants such as Amazon’s Alexa will be supported in the near future, although Fitbit currently supports it, which is now officially owned by Google. We have also recently found out that the new Wear OS 3 smartwatches may be capable of running for 7 days on a single charge.

Samsung Galaxy Watch 3


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