Meanwhile, the non-Wear OS competition is Samsung and Apple, both
of which have their own private SoC divisions where they can
invest in building quality smartwatch chips. I would argue Apple’s
“S” line of SoCs is the primary enabling technology of the Apple
Watch — it can be compact, fast, and long-lasting thanks to a
smartwatch SoC with actual effort behind it. Apple doesn’t talk
much about technical details, but the S3 chip in the Apple Watch
Series 3 was claimed to be 70-percent faster than the S2
SoC. The S4 SoC in this year’s Apple Watch Series 4 is claimed to
be two times faster than the S3, and it’s a modern ARM
design with 64-bit compatibility.
Wear OS has never once seen the kind of performance increase that
the Apple Watch enjoys every single year. If you read Qualcomm’s
press releases carefully (2100 launch, 3100 launch),
you’ll notice the company never even claims its new smartwatch
chip is faster than its old smartwatch chip. We’ve verified this
with benchmarks, too. It’s just the same ancient CPU being
repackaged over and over.
Interesting way to think about it. Whatever you think of the software, Wear OS just doesn’t have competitive chips available on the hardware side.