Google has officially dropped the Android Wear moniker from their operating system for wearable devices, switching to the way less cumbersome Wear OS by Google – although I suspect we’ll all be skipping on saying “by Google” in a few seconds. Google started using the Android brand back in 2008 when they launched their competing mobile OS, following the success of Apple’s iPhone in 2007.
Google has been on a long-term branding shift ever since they launched the company name Alphabet in 2015. This shift to Wear OS by Google means that any licensed manufacturer that makes a device with their OS for wearables will have to display the “Wear OS by Google” name, thereby ensuring the Google brand is spread further and wider than before.
Given this move, I suspect we’ll see a similar shift with Android for smartphones and tablets in future – maybe that will be called “Pixel OS by Google”.
We’ve already seen Android Pay get rebranded to Google Pay and a scan of the Google Pixel 2 page barely mentions Android at all. A search of the web page reveals just one mention – and that’s in the fine-print at the bottom of the page.