There are now more Android Wear apps than Google Glass apps

Less than three weeks after the LG G Watch and Samsung Gear Live were launched as the first Android Wear devices, the number of apps in the Google Play Store that support these watches exceeds the number of Glassware apps Google has been curating for over a year.

Measuring the success of a platform happens in many different ways, with metrics that are only usually important to specific groups of people. Sales, more specifically market share, is usually the one you hear the most about. There's another metric that is important to keep an eye on, one that means a whole lot more to users, and that's apps. When we look at a platform and decide whether or not to invest our personal money into it, the availability of apps are an increasingly significant part of that decision. This is the biggest reason that it is significant to identify a unique milestone in the Android Wear platform. Even though Google's new smartwatch platform is only a couple of weeks old, the number of apps available for it in the Google Play Store have already exceeded those available for the Mountain View company's other wearable platform.

There's a couple of significant differences between the way Google has allowed app development for Android Wear and Google Glass. On our faces, Google maintains strict control of how certain apps behave and what the apps look like. Developers have to submit apps that follow these guidelines, and once the app has been approved by Google it can be added to the Glassware catalog. On our wrists, Google has made it possible for any Android developer to either add support to their existing apps or build all new apps specifically for the platform. The apps can be just about anything, from watch faces to flashlights, and regardless of quality they are available to everyone to install minutes after being published - just like regular old Android apps. Google even has a special section in the Play Store for Android Wear apps, though it only holds the apps Google wants you to see. The rest of the Android Wear apps have to be found using the search box in the Play Store, but already there are dozens of other apps in the search results.

Whether or not this is necessarily a good thing is up for debate. On the one hand, having junk apps in the Google Play Store doesn't really help anyone. With five different flashlight apps for Android Wear, the number of available apps rings a little hollow. On the other hand, it was this same messy app environment that eventually grew to the Google Play Store we all know and love today. With less than 100 Google Glass apps available a full year after many in the Explorer Program started getting their face computers, and comparably little forward momentum from developers working on the platform today, it's not hard to see Android Wear as already successful in at least one key aspect.

Russell is a Contributing Editor at Android Central. He's a former server admin who has been using Android since the HTC G1, and quite literally wrote the book on Android tablets. You can usually find him chasing the next tech trend, much to the pain of his wallet. Find him on Facebook and Twitter

  • Android wear will have more consumer uptake that's why. Posted via Android Central App
  • Basically. Posted via Android Central App
  • $199 vs $1500. Makes sense.
  • <broken record>
    the price of Google Glass was that high because it was A) "Beta" hardware.
    B) They only wanted people who were serious about Glass to buy it. </broken record>
  • Kendall Kendall Kendall! You're trying to justify the price of Google Glass? Well how about failed Google Hobby. You can go onto eBay and find set, after set, after set! The only people sticking to the 'beta hardware and serious about Glass' are those commonly referred to as Mike Elgan, whoops my mistake GLASSHOLE! Those that are on the cutting edge of stupidity, arrogance and self-obsession. Most of the functionality of Google Glass is replaceable with an Androidwear Smartwatch and not only that, you too can rid yourself of that disease call "smug".
  • You fail to recognize that they are doing this to themselves. They have a choice to ramp up production and exit this extended beta they have done. I would be first in line for a consumer model, yet they continue to make beta hardware and integrate it with fashion designer DVF which is quite confusing if you want your product to succeed. Posted via Android Central App
  • Sure they could ramp up production, but they clearly don't think it is ready yet. Bringing it out of beta takes more than just ramping up production. Posted via Android Central App
  • Simply this Posted via Android Central App
  • Why does that image of a rectangular android wear watch remind me of a casio calculator watch? Totally waiting for a Moto 360.
  • Funny, you've just made me want a rectangular one a little more... Posted via Android Central App
  • I own a rectangle LG watch and the amount of real estate that you need for a smart watch form factor is just perfect in the rectangle design. Its going to be interesting to see the loss of space required by most notifications in a round design. Its a smart watch. Its supposed to do stuff for you. If I wanted a stylish watch, I would buy a TAG.
  • And that's what 360 is trying to do. Make a stylish smartwatch. Posted via Nexus 5 Android Central App
  • Exactly. I'm in the market for a new watch. I will likely settle a bit and spend a $300ish less on a mechnical watch so I can justify to myself spending money on a new gadget. I really had zero interest in owning a smartwatch until the 360 and specifically I/O. The 360 looks good enough to wear to the office or really anywhere, and it does some cool things on top of that I may come to appreciate.
  • Well, that's your opinion. Most if you check the forums and polls are showing a lot of interest for the Moto 360.
  • Android Wear is on actual products consumers can buy..... Glass isn't even a consumer product no need for devs to even pay real attention because they won't make any money off of it.
  • I'd argue that glass is a consumer product now. Admittedly a very niche, overpriced one. Posted via Android Central App
  • Android Wear watches are actually consumer not surprising at all.
  • Glass will be in the graveyard of failed Google projects anyway.
    And I'm still not too confident in Android Wear yet despite its potential. It still feels beta for some reason. I'm not even sure the 360 will make it appeal enough. There are already too many apps that will work for square screens but will not be practical for round shapes.
    Posted via Android Central App
  • I'm curious what those apps you've observed are...
  • I disagree with your opinion of Google glass. It has its fan base just not at the price point it's at. Don't get me wrong, I don't believe that it will do anywhere close to what android wear will do but I think it has a chance. Posted via Android Central App
  • A 200 dollar appendage to a 600 dollar phone, to save you the effort of reaching to your pocket!
    Another thing to charge every night, another wire and charger to carry. Another thing to moan about short battery life, and another thing to shorten your phone's battery life. First, give me 5 dollars for the damage to my bush. Then Go over to that bush, break me off a 4 foot switch, bring it back over to me, and bend over. We'll learn you not to buy painful items. Seriously, if you had a purse, and had to dig your phone out of it, then the watch might be useful. But people who actually carry purses wouldn't be caught dead with these smart watches. So.... Read this article on Time:
    It says everything you need to know.
  • Not surprising.
  • And you can wear it in your favorite establishment without being thought of as a douche, then show off all your apps.
  • +1! not too mention FartDroid now supports Android Wear! :)
  • Quote: "wear it in your favorite establishment without being thought of as a douche, then show off all your apps." And promptly proving yourself a douche in the process.
  • While wearing your glass, make sure to look in the mirror and wonder why people think your a douche.....before posting and removing all doubt. No need to be the White Knight of glass. Save it for Twitter.
  • Good Posted from my Nexus 7 2013 running Android L or Samsung galaxy S5
  • Makes sense, for a few reasons. Posted via Android Central App
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  • Blow much? Posted via Android Central App
  • Money earned varies, but I hear his mother makes up to $400 a day without ever leaving her bed! C'mon fuzzy. You're better than this! insulting a spam-bots mother! Posted via Android Central App
  • AC block this bitch Posted via Android Central App
  • Why can't we flag comments on here? Ac is so far behind. Posted via Nexus 5 Android Central App
  • damn gotta get a bigger band look like ya circulation cut off
  • Custom android wear backrounds
  • I'd imagine there are more Android Wear watches than Google Glasses too! It's funny how a larger consumer base results in larger app development for a product... OK, Google Now. Post comment to Android Central.
  • I appreciate the technology that goes into these watches everyone keeps coming out with. I just don't see myself ever buying one. What can you do on a watch? Can't possibly respond to emails or texts. Why all the attention given to these watches lately? Posted via Android Central App
  • Because all the manufacturers are sending samples to all the smart phone blogs, and none of them have the balls to stand up and point to the emperors new cloths. They know if they did, they'd never get another sample of anything.
  • We get it, you don't like swatches or Glass. Don't buy one. You didn't even read all of the article you posted above. It didn't prove your point. In fact, the author provided at least three great and useful apps/situation (I will add gMaps on a bike) towards the end. Just stated the obvious that some devs are just rushing crap out to get in the store. It will evolve. OEMs are going to sell millions of these things. Glass has a future at the very least in industrial, medical, and military sectors if not the general public. The iWatch, whatever it is and looks like, will sell like crazy. Why do people love WalMart and Home Depot? Convenience (yes and low prices). Sadly, lots of people are too lazy to reach for their smartphone if they don't have to, and lots more just think they're cool. It just has to look good and be priced decently for the masses (maybe not iWatch).
  • Yeah, cuz all you do on your smartphone is emailing and texting.
  • Can totally respond to emails and texts. Posted via Android Central App
  • The price difference not everyone can afford a google glass. Posted via Android Central App
  • The excitement around google glass has dwindled. Google is taking too long to release it at a consumer friendly price. I am more interested in the moto 360 at this time.
  • Exactly like the Android market started. Excited. More so for watch faces. Lol. The OS needs an easier way to access apps especially with the names and everything. Don't you think a lot of these will easily be converted to a Glasswear app?
    Posted via Android Central App
  • liking my G Watch so far!
  • The number of consumer's still far from what I expected
    Where we can follow the grow of Wear community?
    Recently launch our app and looking for more information about wear apps, watches
    Game Watch Collection)