Google teases Wear OS watch owners with an early taste of the new update

Fossil Gen 5 Wear OS Play Store Redesign
Fossil Gen 5 Wear OS Play Store Redesign (Image credit: Derrek Lee / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Some Wear OS smartwatches are receiving an updated Play Store design.
  • The redesign resembles the upcoming unified platform built by Google and Samsung.
  • Fossil has already stated that its smartwatches won't receive the upcoming update.

Owners of some of the best Wear OS watches are getting a nice surprise thanks to the latest update to the Play Store.

According to a couple of threads on Reddit, some smartwatch models are getting a redesigned Play Store. Various elements in the Play Store app are much more pronounced, with larger pill-shaped buttons that should make it easier to navigate. This new design is featured throughout the app, and some buttons even feature a gradient color scheme.

The new design strikes a close resemblance to the Google and Samsung's Wear OS platform that the companies are co-developing. Google showed off a bit of the new unified platform at Google I/O, and Samsung recently showed off its new One UI Watch platform at MWC 2021.

The Play Store redesign seems to be available on select smartwatches at the moment, including the Moto 360 (3rd Gen), Suunto 7, Mobvoi TicWatch Pro 3 GPS, and Fossil Gen 5, but availability may vary right now. Our TicWatch Pro 3 hasn't received the update, nor has the newer TicWatch E3, for that matter, but our Fossil Gen 5 has it.

The change only affects the Play Store app and doesn't seem to appear in any other part of the UI.

It's unclear what prompted the update, but whatever the case may be, it's a curious change for the Fossil Gen 5 after the company announced that its current devices weren't being updated to the new unified platform. It's possible that older devices may still receive some elements of the new Wear OS, but for now, Google remains largely mum on the subject of Wear OS updates. Regardless, we've reached out to both Google and Fossil for clarification on the updated look and will update when we have more information.

The new unified platform is expected to arrive later this year with the launch of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4, which will be the first smartwatch to feature the new Wear OS.

Derrek Lee
Managing Editor

Derrek is the managing editor of Android Central, helping to guide the site's editorial content and direction to reach and resonate with readers, old and new, who are just as passionate about tech as we are. He's been obsessed with mobile technology since he was 12, when he discovered the Nokia N90, and his love of flip phones and new form factors continues to this day. As a fitness enthusiast, he has always been curious about the intersection of tech and fitness. When he's not working, he's probably working out.