Update 11:28 am. ET: Spotify has just announced that the Apple Watch is getting Spotify downloads for offline listening. You can download playlists, albums and podcasts.
Wear OS smartwatch users will soon get the ability to play Spotify playlists and podcasts offline, direct from their wearable.
Announced during the Google I/O keynote, the plans mean that Spotify's 365 million users will finally be able download music straight to their watch, with the ability to listen to the service offline when they don’t have their phone with them.
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The long-overdue feature, which has been sorely absent from intermittent Wear OS updates (opens in new tab), hasn’t been made available in the Wear OS latest release. However, offline listening is in the works and coming soon, according to Spotify.
Users of smartwatches from rival brands, including Garmin and Samsung, have long been able to enjoy their Spotify music offline by downloading content to their watch, so Google had some catching up to do. Because this feature lets users leave their smartphone at home, it's especially useful for runners, or just if you want to keep your phone safe.
BREAKING: Wear OS has been injected with steroids🔥🚀https://t.co/2HDCwakUd2 https://t.co/Y23j0Se9Bj pic.twitter.com/tzGlUtxsCgMay 18, 2021
It really does boggle the mind that it's taken so very long for Google's Wear OS to play catch up here, especially with something seemingly so simple, albeit no less important to music enthusiasts, as is offline listening.
Other news sees the new offline music support extending to Google's very own YouTube Music, introducing native support across the Wear OS platform.
And given how Google appears to be heralding a new dawn of smartwatch dominance by merging Wear OS with Samsung’s Tizen, you'd be forgiven for falling headfirst into the glistening allure of a newly reformed Wear OS.
The jury remains out on whether Wear OS has done enough to become truly competitive, but still, here's to a faster breed of Wear OS devices with longer battery lives and more frequent updates.