Almost every major tech company has targeted wearables as the next big thing in electronic gadgets. Samsung, Sony, LG, Motorola and Apple have each either released a smartwatch or announced one. Google has invested millions into developing a wearable operating system for smartwatches and other wearables called Android Wear.
We'll soon start to see whether wearable tech will catch on in the mainstream, but in the meantime I'm still following the trend closely. The success of the Apple Watch will be the true benchmark for wearable tech's potential ceiling. Unfortunately, we don't know when it will come out, and there have been rumors of design setbacks and engineering problems.
That's why app developers are almost solely focused on Android Wear right now. It's more or less the only game in town when it comes to multi-device wearable platforms. That could give Google a huge advantage when the Apple Watch does finally go on sale. When Android smartphones first came out, Apple had already cornered the market on the latest and greatest apps, and it took awhile for Android to catch up.
Smartwatches aren't designed as a replacement for your smartphone - at least not yet. All the major wearables work with your smartphone while it's in your pocket. For example, if you have the Vonage Voice-over-IP app on your phone, you can now use your Android Wear smartwatch to reject a call and send a preset or voice-to-text message instead.
Vonage's new app for Android Wear was released this past Wednesday. It has three basic functions. First, it allows you to see who's calling you on the Vonage app. Second, it lets you reject calls. The app allows users to reject calls using a specific double-tap feature, unique to Vonage, which will automatically send the “Can’t talk right now” text. You can't answer them on your smartwatch because it doesn't have a speaker, and the Vonage app can't automatically engage your phone's speaker phone function.
Third, you can respond to instant messages with one of five other pre-set text responses like "Can't talk right now," or "Running late, be there soon."
The Vonage app is free even if you're not a Vonage customer. Once you download it, to your smartphone, you can sync it to your Android Wear smartwatch using the Bluetooth syncing feature.