Upgrade to latest Android Wear

Note: Wear OS norally upgrades over the air. This is ONLY for those that have a watch with a factory upgrade image available.

This procedure assumes a Linux computer plugged in via USB to the Wear smartwatch.

  1. on Linux computer

    apt install android-tools-adb
    usermod -aG plugdev $(whoami)

then logout/login 1. get the android.googleapis.com-hosted update .zip.
Don’t download from random websites! Do not unzip this zip file (you can look inside, but we’ll be using the original .zip file 2. on the Wear watch: Settings → About → tap Build version 7 times to enable Developer mode 3. on the Wear watch: Settings → Developer Mode → enable ADB debugging 4. plug your watch into your computer via USB and type

   sudo adb devices

you should see the reply

serialNumber device

if it says something else, see the “troubleshooting” section at the bottom of this page. 5. type

   adb reboot bootloader

the watch immediately goes to bootloader mode with tiny print 6. tap the left and/or right arrows on the watch screen until “recovery mode” is in red, then tap the circle on the watch screen 7. swipe DOWN (not left or right) until “apply update from ADB” then swipe right 8. on your computer

   adb sideload ~/Downloads/<your watch file>.zip
  1. your watch will take several minutes to verify update package and patch system image unconditionally. Don’t worry if the watch says “log error”. You may need to reboot from the watch menu when it’s done.
  2. The watch reboot will take about 3-4 times longer than normal. Just be patient. It will finally say “android is upgrading apps”
  3. After verifying Wear OS is installed, disable ADB debugging by on the Wear watch: Settings → Developer Mode → disable ADB debugging


For step #5 adb devices

  • if it says offline: reboot your computer and unplug/plug your watch via USB to the PC
  • if it says no permissions be sure you have used try typing

    pkill adb
    sudo adb devices
  • if it says unauthorized then unlock your watch lock screen and take OK when asked if you want to give debugging permissions