It’s being described as “one of the worst jokes in recent times.” “I’m absolutely fuming!!!” says one commenter. “This is a bad dream,” states another.
Nothing strikes the nerve quite like Android Wear notification issues.
Since early April, frustrated smartwatch owners running Android Wear 2.0 have been visiting the Google product forums seeking a fix to notification issues plaguing devices. These problems, which are believed to be linked to the Android Wear 2.0 rollout, are particularly painful seeing as Android Wear 2.0 was so long in the making — it was first discussed in May 2016 and some watches were still yet to receive it one year later.
The issue seems to be affecting the way in which notifications reach the device. For some users, these fail to appear at all, while for others they appear for a handful of apps and circumstances (like getting a notification when they are being called) but not all. Further, it doesn’t appear to be tied to any particular smartwatch or smartphone that it’s paired with.
A Google employee has offered some solutions for this already — and the steps cover a lot of ground. Disappointingly, however, they haven’t solved the problem for all users.
Now, there are often small bugs and software issues that crop up on some devices following an update rollout, but they’re generally quickly addressed. In this case the, the problem appears to be significant, reasonably widespread, and still ongoing. And the actual nature of the issue makes matters worse still.
Many critics argue that smartwatches don’t do much when they are fully functional, but one thing they are known to do well is offer at-a-glance notifications. When Android Wear watches stop being able to deliver WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger or email notifications, as is the case in this scenario, then the problem is far beyond an annoyance — it’s actually robbing the wearables of critical functionality. It’s like updating your phone to Android Nougat and it breaking the call feature, and then having to wait three or so months for a fix. And that’s presuming the fix is even on its way.
Unfortunately, we can’t offer any potential solutions for this: the steps laid out by the Google employee covers pretty much all bases. You can try clearing the Android Wear app data and cache, which seems to have helped some users, while one person found success with SMS notifications by changing their default SMS app.
Though it’s possible that all these issues are unrelated and concern only the smartwatch manufacturers, all signs indicate this is an inherent Android Wear software issue, for which Google must ultimately be held responsible. As one commenter summed up the situation: “Google has really messed this up. [I] couldn’t think of a worse ad for Android Wear than letting down already satisfied customers.”
What are your thoughts on the current Android Wear notification issue situation? Let us know in the comments.