Just Messages and Google Maps to go: YouTube Music arrives on Wear OS 2 smartwatches
Google has brought YouTube Music to some Wear OS 2 smartwatches. Previously, Wear OS had Google Play Music, until Google closed the service last August. A year on and Google announced that a YouTube Music app was ready for Wear OS, but only for the Galaxy Watch4 series. The new app would not run on anything other than Wear OS and its derivatives either, as we discussed last month.
Seemingly, the YouTube Music app now supports API 28, which is necessary for it to run on Wear OS 2. Accordingly, Google has updated the version number from the 4.41.42-WEAR_RELEASE it debuted in August to 4.46.42-WEAR_RELEASE. Strangely, Google has not updated its Wear OS blog to reflect that YouTube Music is now available on Wear OS 2 devices too.
Ultimately, YouTube Music on Wear OS is still lacking in many areas. For example, it is still impossible to stream music, let alone view the contents of a playlist or an album. In fact, it seems that 4.46.42-WEAR_RELEASE contains no quality of life improvements over 4.41.42-WEAR_RELEASE. Hopefully, the arrival of YouTube Music on Wear OS 2 is the continuation of Google porting its other Wear OS 3 apps, such as Messages and Google Maps.
According to 9to5Google, Google is only allowing Snapdragon Wear 4100 and Wear 4100+ powered smartwatches to download YouTube Music, currently. Reputedly, Google will expand availability 'by the end of 2021'. It is possible to sideload 4.46.42-WEAR_RELEASE on other Wear OS smartwatches though, including the Fossil Gen 5. We cannot vouch for how well the app runs on less powerful hardware, unfortunately.