The first set of stable Android Jetpack Wear OS libraries are now available, covering wear, wear-input, wear-ongoing, wear-phone-interactions, and wear-remote-interactions. Android Jetpack is a suite of libraries for use in app development designed to reduce boilerplate code.
Mike James sums Jetpack up like this:
“At first Jetpack was a sort of cleaning up of the mess that we already had, but it slowly evolved into a complete takeover attempt. What do you want to do — there’s a Jetpack solution for that…”
Looking specifically at the Wear OS side of the equation, Wear OS is based on Android, but is optimized for apps on Google smart watches, so designed to be viewed on user’s wrists.
The Android Jetpack Wear OS libraries are replacements for the old Wearable Support library with better support for Wear OS 3.0. Android Jetpack components are a collection of libraries that can be used separately but that are built to work together and to take advantage of Kotlin language features for productivity.
The wear library can be used to lay out elements in an arch to support round watches and to curved text following the curvature of a device.The wear-input library can be used to identify and interact with hardware buttons on the Wear OS device, and wear-ongoing brings notifications to the wear specific surfaces. The wear phone interactions library detects the type of phone a watch is paired with (iOS or Android) and handles all the notification bridging options. Finally, the wear remote interactions opens Android intents on other devices, for example, when a user wants the app on both the phone and watch.
The other libraries in the suite, specifically the Watch Face and Complications libraries are in alpha and will be released as stable later this year. Once that launches, the Wearable Support Library will officially be deprecated.
The new libraries are available for download now.
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