At a digital Mobile World Congress event today, Samsung is showing off its designs for a new generation of Galaxy wearables. But it's sticking to the One UI software side of things, declining to debut new wearable hardware, or even talk very much about that new combined Wear OS platform that it will be running on. It's a bit of a downer after those recent leaks of a next-gen Galaxy Watch 4 from last week.
Samsung is calling its software One UI Watch, which will run as a layer on top of the new Wear OS. It says that the next generation of its Galaxy Watch hardware (which, again, it's not actually showing off today) will be the first to use the new unified Wear OS and One UI Watch. The new Galaxy Watch system will run Google's standard Wear apps and get new apps through the Play Store, not the Galaxy Store.
So what can One UI Watch do? A lot of things that are simple tweaks to existing interfaces, but ones that make pretty good sense. The One UI interface has been adapted to watch screens. Apps which have a Wear OS component will automatically sync the wearable app over to the watch when downloaded on Android. World clocks set on a Samsung phone will sync to the clock app on the watch. That sort of thing.
Samsung seems particularly proud of the fact that any numbers blocked via the calling app on a Galaxy Watch will then block the number on the phone, and sync that blocked status to other Galaxy phones. Samsung also showed off a simple WYSIWIG editor for watch faces that will be available to Galaxy developers.
Other than that, we didn't get a whole lot of hard details on the new-and-hopefully-improved Galaxy Watch (or Wear OS, for that matter). Samsung says it plans to reveal next generation Galaxy Watch devices at a Samsung Unpacked event "later this summer."