Back in October, just a few weeks before Google killed Google Play Music for all remaining users, the company announced the release of a cute new YouTube Music app for smartwatches. Unfortunately, the watches did not run the new Android app and were instead Apple Watch. As for Wear OS, Google could only tell us to “keep an eye”
Less than two months later, Google discontinued Google Play Music, but Wear OS users still had not heard of YouTube Music coming to save the day on the music front. We are now 4 months into life without Google Play Music (and even longer for the Wear OS app), and the same is true – there is no YouTube Music app for Wear OS.
You may be wondering why this is so big. First, a standalone YouTube Music app will give Wear OS users access to their wrist music collections, let them control playback, and potentially add Casting controls. At least that’s what the Apple Watch version can do.
For Wear OS users today, the only option is to control melodies through system media controls, which allow you to control the pause / playback volume or skip tracks. But there is quite limited functionality there. Again, the Apple Watch app gives you access to libraries and Casting controls without having to unplug the phone.
We still believe Google is creating a YouTube Music app for Wear OS, because they have not said they are not. They told us in August last year that there were plans for YouTube Music and wearables, although they did not specifically say that an app was coming. In October, however, the “stay tuned” message was a reference to the fact that we were looking for “further updates on the availability of YouTube Music on Wear OS.” Sounds like an app, right?
Either way, April and YouTube Music replaced Google Play Music months and months and months ago without a proper replacement app for Google’s portable operating system. That’s bad.
- UPDATE: A YouTube spokesperson tells us that they are “actively working to bring a robust YouTube Music experience to Wear OS” and that they “will share more information as soon as possible.”