This may come as a surprise to those who have not yet owned a Wear OS watch, but Google doesn’t have Gmail or Calendar apps on the platform. That’s not to say that you can’t interact with both services, see their notifications, etc., or that either is not a big part of the experience. All I’m saying is that Google hasn’t released stand-alone Wear OS apps for two of their biggest services.
That could change, according to a report out of 9to5Google. Their sources believe that Google is well into testing both apps as a “full” experience.
The report does not yet know what “full” means, but it should be better than what we have now, which is nothing. The current Gmail and Calendar integration essentially needs you to be connected to your phone in order to get notifications from either. With a stand-alone app, you might be able to unplug from your phone a bit, view email lists, create new events (without Assistant), or draft up an email, that sort of thing.
You might be wondering why a watch needs all of that functionality? I can tell you that I rarely walk out of a room without my in hand or in my pocket and yet even I would love a Gmail app. If you leave your phone in another room at your house, when out on a walk, or really at any other time, it would be nice to still get Gmail notifications. Imagine you have an LTE-equipped watch or are on WiFi – wouldn’t it be nice to view your email list or enter a full Calendar app?
There’s no word on when Google could release Gmail or Calendar apps, we just believe they are testing them. Google is all-in on Wear OS again, thanks to the Pixel Watch, so this could be one of those Pixel Feature Drop types of releases. How big would that be to show off your own hardware than to say, “Look, you now get Gmail and Calendar first before anyone else on your watch”?
We’ll let you know if we learn more.