Android phones and smartwatches may soon sync app permissions

Turning the crown on the Google Pixel Watch 2
(Image credit: Nicholas Sutrich / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Android 14 QPR1 Beta 2 introduced a new feature to enable better syncing between phones and smartwatch apps.
  • Mishaal Rahman spotted the new addition, which lets users "Sync permissions from phone."
  • It is a new toggle that should extend app permissions from Android phones to Wear OS smartwatches.

Google Pixel Watch app for Android has been spotted with a new app permission feature that should make using apps on your smartwatch and Android phone more seamless.

First spotted by Mishaal Rahman (via SamMobile), a new sync permissions feature allows users to sync their app permissions between their Android phones and connected Wear OS smartwatches. While the feature doesn't operate now, it gives us an idea of what to expect from future updates.

New Pixel Watch app permission

(Image credit: Mishaal Rahman)

Android phone users will be able to navigate to their System preferences and hit the Device details section, where they'll spot the new "Sync permissions from phone" toggle. Enabling it would "Give your watch the same app permissions" that users have allowed on the respective handset. As mentioned, it is currently in the works and can only be enabled by a flag first spotted in Android 14 QPR1 Beta 2.

Whenever the feature rollout happens, it should help Android phone and Wear OS users save time dealing with the app permissions on both devices.

As SamMobile puts it, whenever a user grants permission to access their location on Google Maps, the same app permission will extend to their smartwatch, Pixel Watch, for the respective Google Maps app. What's more is that this feature won't be exclusive to Pixels so other Android phones and Wear OS smartwatches will be able to take advantage.

That said, your smartwatch may need to run Wear OS 4, which is only available on a handful of models. Aside from the Pixel Watch and Galaxy Watch models, Wear OS 4 is available on the OnePlus Watch 2 and may soon come to the TicWatch Pro 5, assuming Mobvoi's beta test goes well.

Vishnu Sarangapurkar
News Writer

Vishnu works as a freelance News Writer for Android Central. For the past four years, he's been writing about consumer technology, primarily involving smartphones, laptops, and every other gizmo connected to the Internet. When he is away from keyboard, you can see him going on a long drive or chilling on a couch binge-watching some crime series.