There are several ways to install apps on a Wear OS smartwatch: from its miniature Play Store, copying the Wear OS version of apps you have on your mobile or through ADB. The second will no longer be available from March 10.
After limiting the visibility of Wear OS applications that run alongside others for mobile, the next step will be to they cannot be installed from Apps on my phone, a relatively convenient way that existed to install apps for Wear OS that are not in Google Play.
No more Wear OS version apps inside
To make it easier to discover and install apps on the Wear OS smartwatch, developers can include the Wear OS version within your Android app. This way, nothing else needs to be downloaded to the watch, except “transferring” the Wear OS version of the app from the phone to the smartwatch.
This behavior is “obsolete” since Wear OS is able to download and install applications directly, although Google has allowed it until now as a legacy mode. Google prefers that download the applications directly from Google Play on the smartwatch And, therefore, these Wear OS apps within Android apps have limited visibility: they don’t appear in searches on Google Play.
The only way to install these applications was to go to the section of Apps on my phone, but this will also change from March 10, as the company has made known to the developers of applications for Wear OS in an e-mail.
This is precisely the installation mode that some Wear OS applications have that are not available on Google Play, and that without forgetting that it is also faster than using the store itself. Google suggests to developers that, instead of embedding the Wear OS version in the mobile version -which increases the size of the APK that users install even if they do not have Wear OS- use a multi-APK system.
In this way, the application will appear when searching for it in Google Play on the smartwatch, and users who download it on their mobile will not need to take Wear OS as a gift as well. What is not clear is whether Apps on my phone it will cease to exist or it will simply change to show you these apps with multiple APKs, which you should in any case download from the store, as they are no longer physically on the mobile.
Via | Android Police