Samsung Galaxy Watch 7 won’t support older watch faces

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Google warnsย that its newest smartwatch operating system detailed at the I/O conference in May – Wear OS 5.0 – won’t have built-in support for older watch faces made for previous Wear OS versions.

This would definitely be a pity if you are gunning for Samsung’s newly announced Galaxy Watch 7 series, as it comes with Wear OS 5.0 right out of the gate. If you are used to some oldie but goldie watch face on your Samsung Galaxy, you might not be able to install it on the Watch 7, and would have to pick something else to tide you over until the developer eventually updates it.

This lack of Wear OS 5.0 support only goes for watch screen content that are not designed with the new Watch Face Format (WFF) that Google introduced last year. It is an XML-based developer platform that makes it easy to create watch faces, add new features, or maintain them consistently over different Wear OS iterations.

For new watches with Wear OS 5, youโ€™ll only have access to watch faces that have met our performance and quality standards,” says Google, and adds how “this means that select watch faces will no longer be accessible on the Google Play Store.”

In essence, those who are rocking a smartwatch right now will be able to use any current watch face made for Wear OS 2 and up, but if they get new gear onย Wear OS 5, “select watch faces may not be available to download on your new watch, even if they were available on your previous watch.” In addition, backing up all the settings and content of your old watch for a transfer to, say, a Galaxy Watch 7 or Watch 7 Ultra, won’t restore your old layouts if they are incompatible with Google’s currentย Watch Face Format.

It is still not clear how many developers will bother or have made the effort to go back and re-code their home screens in the new Watch Face Format, though, so if you are rocking an old watch face, be warned that you might be unable to run it on the Galaxy Watch 7 and might have to be accustomed to a new screen layout.


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