Android Wear 2.0 brought a great deal of autonomy to smartwatches. For better functionality it is necessary to leave the associated phone on and internet connected. The Wear watch connects over LTE or Wifi local to the phone over the internet if the phone is out of Bluetooth range.
Android Wear smartwatch standalone on Wifi or LTE
With Android Wear 2.0, once you initially setup the watch, you can turn the phone off and accomplish the following (as long as the watch is on Wifi or LTE)
- Google Assistant voice commands i.e. Internet searches, setting reminders, etc. via voice
- installing smartwatch apps on Google Play
- Google Maps (including downloading new map areas)
Android Wear requires Internet-connected phone for full functionality
In this category, you must have the associated smartphone connected to the Internet somewhere in the world. The watch can be far away out of Bluetooth range (even in another country) from this associated Internet-connected phone.
- email notifications (Blackberry Hub)
- setting new calendar events. The watch only gets new events via internet connected phone over the watch’s internet connection (WiFi or LTE watch). The watch will alert for alarms previously synced when the phone was on, even after the phone is off.
- Google Maps Navigation – surprisingly accurate even without GPS
- Google Hangouts
- Google Keep
- Microsoft OneNote
Apps NOT working with Wifi/LTE only (requires BLE connection to phone)
- Google Authenticator (good that it requires local BLE connection)
WiFi types for Android Wear
Android Wear 2.0 smartwatches can connect to these types of Wifi networks:
- WPA/WPA2 PSK (single password for all users, most home wifi networks use this)
WPA-EAP only works if using a third party app.