One of Android Wear 5.1's key new features is the ability to connect smartwatches to Wi-Fi networks directly. This lets them receive notifications and sync actions even if your phone isn't nearby, as long as both maintain active connections to the Internet. The thing is, this feature doesn't automatically kick in with the 5.1 update (or 5.1.1, though it should for the Moto 360, Sony Smartwatch 3, and Samsung Gear Live). The LG G Watch R, which is largely the same device on the inside as the newer G Watch R Urbane, won't have support for quite a while.
LG says providing the G Watch R with Wi-Fi will require a patch, one that's set to go out sometime in the third quarter. Here's a statement from the company that was shared on Androidworld.
There have been some confusion over the capabilities of LG wearable devices with the arrival of the latest version of Android Wear, currently rolling out this week. Regardless of what has been reported, the latest version of Android Wear does not automatically provide Wi-Fi support unless the device was designed with this functionality in place at the time of sale.
LG Watch Urbane is the only wearable device currently shipping with the latest version of Android Wear OS and is Wi-Fi capable out of the box. The original LG G Watch was not designed with Wi-Fi in mind and will not have this capability even after the Android Wear update. LG G Watch R will require a maintenance release patch after the Android Wear update to access Wi-Fi networks. LG engineers are preparing the patch now for availability in the third quarter.
We thank LG fans for their patience and loyalty. LG is confident in guaranteeing that their wearable experience will be second to none.
We've reached out to LG and confirmed that this update will not go out until around July.