The Moto Watch 100 might skip out on Google’s Wear OS entirely for a custom OS

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A new Motorola-branded smartwatch, the Moto Watch 100, has been in the works for months, with the lack of a chip being a major factor in its delay. Now, the wearable is on the Nerdshala of launch — and a new leak from Evan Blass (@evleaks on Twitter) says that it may not be running Google’s Wear OS as expected.

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The Moto Watch 100 CE is an affordable Motorola-branded watch from the brands whose specifications have been leaked earlier. This will be pretty standard as far as hardware goes, should the rumors spread. It will be a lightweight watch at 29 grams, with a 355mAh battery and support for Bluetooth 5.0. There are all the old familiar sensors, from accelerometer to gyroscope, and this will be a fitness-focused watch. The interesting thing about this watch is the perceived choice of operating system. Instead of adopting Google’s Wear OS as expected, the Motorola Watch 100 will run an all-new Moto Watch OS, according to Blass.

Motorola Watch 100.
Evan Blass

The owners of the Motorola smartwatch brand aren’t the only smartwatch makers to roll out their own operating system. Another major Android phone maker, OnePlus, recently did the same with the OnePlus Watch and its real-time operating system (RTOS). The main disadvantage with this approach is the lack of third-party app support compared to more mainstream smartwatches. When one considers how to use a smartwatch in practice, it might not be such a big loss if the basic fitness-tracking features are out of sync with your smartphone.

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It may sound the same for your average person, but it’s a challenge for Google despite Samsung’s recent return to the fold. Smartphone makers are used to making Android phones because they have no real alternative. With Wear OS-powered watches being largely outclassed by the Apple Watch (and Google’s own lackluster treatment of the platform), watchmakers may be trying to break away from Google.

Even with Google’s Wear OS 3 being by all accounts an outstanding improvement, the smartwatch market may still be fragmented among various unrelated operating systems for the foreseeable future.

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