Google is not very subtle with its wearables push

After a massive Pixel Watch leak last weekend, you would think Google might want to relax on the wearables front. Nix. With Google I / O just weeks away, a video teasing Google Assistant on the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 has surfaced on YouTube, and Google-owned Fitbit has officially begun rolling out passive atrial fibrillation alarms on its suite of devices.

We have known that Google Assistant came to the Galaxy Watch 4 (and therefore Wear OS 3) for several months. The only thing we do not really know is when, but it seems that the wait is coming to an end. There was a false alarm last week when Verizon struck with an update log indicating that Google Assistant support was included in the latest round of Galaxy Watch 4 updates. Google told later The edge that it was not it rollout of Assistant for Galaxy Watch 4 yet and that it had no update on timing.

But now Samsung has uploaded a teaser video showing Google Assistant on Watch 4 in a YouTube video (via Android police.) In it, a man says “Hey Google” to download the YouTube Music app. It’s a short part of an already short 15-second ad, but it’s clearly in the center. The last time Samsung offered any updates on timing was back in February, when it said the feature would arrive ‘In the coming months. Although it was vague, this certainly fits within that timeline.

Given that Google is in control of when Assistant arrives on Wear OS 3, in addition to Verizon’s faux pas last week, Samsung’s new tease suggests that the long-awaited update could be announced by I / O. It’s also when Google is expected to officially announce the Pixel Watch, which would only be the second smartwatch to run Wear OS 3.

In the meantime 9to5Google reports that Fitbit has begun rolling out passive notifications of irregular heartbeat on nine of its fitness trackers and smartwatches. These include Fitbit Sense, Versa 3, Versa 2, Versa Lite Edition, Charge 5, Luxe, Charge 4, Charge 3 and Inspire 2.

Google, which owns Fitbit, announced it was seeking FDA approval to monitor passive atrial fibrillation in late March. The feature then received approval earlier this month. The feature was a big step forward for Fitbit, which previously only had FDA approval for its ECG app. This app allowed Fitbit Sense and Fitbit Charge 5 owners to check their heart rate. This passive feature runs in the background and can now be used on the wider range of Fitbit products mentioned above – many of which are several years old.

Fitbit Sense was the first of the company’s trackers to introduce ECG-powered atrial fibrillation spot checks.
Photo by Brent Rose / The Verge

These are both minor updates to the large system of Wear OS 3, which is expected to arrive on non-Samsung watches in the second half of this year. But combined with the growing number of Pixel Watch leaks and the fact that Google I / O is on the horizon? This is simply further proof that 2022 is when Google actualizes years of laying the groundwork for a bigger push for wearables. All we have to do now is wait and see what comes next.