When Wear OS 3 was released, Google Assistant was removed from many smartwatches, leaving just the Pixel Watch and Samsung’s more recent Galaxy Watches to offer the function. Thank goodness, you can now talk to Google on your wrist without switching brands. This month, Fossil will release an update that brings Assistant to Gen 6 watches running Wear OS 3. Although you’ll need to be paired with a phone running regular Android with Google apps (Android Go and many Chinese phones won’t count), this includes both Fossil’s own models as well as equivalents from Diesel, Michael Kors, and Skagen.
If you’ve ever used Samsung or Google wristwear, the functionality will be familiar to you. Saying “hey Google,” holding a button, or tapping a watch face complication will activate the AI assistant. You may use the functionality to perform other actions that would often require your phone, such as responding to texts and controlling music. But unlike many options, you’ll also have Alexa at your disposal. Speaking commands won’t tie you to a specific ecosystem.
If you’re wearing a Wear OS 3 watch from another manufacturer, such as Mobvoi or Montblanc, this won’t be much assistance. However, one of the most well-known brands of Google-powered smartwatches is Fossil. More wearable owners will be able to use Assistant and avoid tapping a tiny screen thanks to this support.
If you’re unfamiliar with smartwatches, you might want to wait before making a purchase. With the exception of this year’s slightly enhanced Gen 6 Wellness Edition, Fossil typically releases new Wear OS models in late summer. While Gen 7’s release date and potential features are unknown, we wouldn’t buy Gen 6 just because Assistant is available because Gen 7 is sure to be a major advance. The upgrade mostly benefits current owners who lost functionality the previous year.