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New Features For Wear OS’s YouTube Music App Fills Its Music Streaming Gap

by Victoria Marian Belmis / May 20, 2022 10:30 AM EDT
YouTube Music On Galaxy Watch 4

The Youtube Music app on the Wear OS has rolled out two new features. Wear OS users can finally use the app to stream songs over Wi-Fi and LTE. Additionally, a YouTube Music tile or widget can be added to your watch to quickly access recently played playlists or YouTube Music's dedicated browse page.

Users will be able to access 80 million songs via the app, according to a Google community post. Alongside the luxury of ad-free streaming, the app also supports Google's Smart Downloads feature. This automatically refreshes the song downloaded to your Wear OS watch whenever it connects to Wi-Fi. Tailored playlists will gradually be recommended to you based on your listening history, perfect for when you're in the mood for something familiar and serendipitous at the same time.

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The Wear OS Youtube Music App took a long detour before its debut. Google Play Music, the only streaming app on wear OS for a time, was discontinued by Google in 2020. This left Wear OS users with limited options for offline music play. Despite the open gap, Google prioritized developing a YouTube Music app for the Apple Watch instead.

It wasn't until the summer of last year when Samsung revealed the Galaxy Watch 4 lineup, that Youtube Music was launched on Wear OS, as a Wear OS 3 exclusive. Google rolled out the app to Wear OS 2 a month later. However, it was then limited to offline playback only. The arrival of these two new features finally filled the fissure of music streaming in Wear OS Watches and makes YouTube Music a viable jamming option for other smartwatches as well.

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The update comes at almost predestined timing, as Google confirmed it'll launch Pixel Watch in the fall during last week's annual I/O event. Additional app options for Wear OS 3 were also previewed, including functions from Google's own services, such as Google Wallet and Google Home. Collectively, Google and Samsung just announced that a long-anticipated Wear OS 3 feature, Google Assistant, would finally arrive sometime this summer.

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