Time Plus News

Breaking News, Latest News, World News, Headlines and Videos

How to use Google Maps on your Android smartwatch

Along with access to notifications, calls, and health tracking, your Android smartwatch can be a handy add-on for navigating busy city streets through Google Maps. Cyclists and runners can leave their phones at home and follow turn-by-turn directions from their wrists. Whether you have a Samsung Galaxy Watch 6, Google Pixel Watch 2, or another Android wearable, use the steps below to set up Google Maps on Wear OS.

The app is pre-installed on most Wear OS watches. If not, download it from the Play Store on your watch or phone.

Check permissions for Google Maps on Wear OS

Before using Maps on your Wear OS watch, give the app the necessary permissions, including location access, so that the Wear OS Maps app works properly. When you first launch Google Maps on your smartwatch, it asks for the required location permissions. If you denied it accidentally, use the steps below to activate it.

Go to the app drawer, long press the Google Maps icon, and select Permissions. Select Location. Tap Allow all the time. Google Maps for Wear OS - Location permission

Now, you’re set to use Google Maps on your smartwatch without glitches.

Can you use Google Maps on your smartwatch without your phone?

Yes, you can use Google Maps on your Wear OS smartwatch when not paired to your phone. However, for turn-by-turn navigation directions, you must have a watch that connects to an LTE network. You can also start navigation on your phone and get the directions on your watch, even if your phone is left behind.

If you have a Bluetooth-only Wear OS watch, Google Maps only provides turn-by-turn directions when the wearable is paired to your phone.

How to use Google Maps on your Wear OS smartwatch without your phone

Before you start, ensure your watch is paired with your phone or connected to the internet. Then, follow the steps below to use Google Maps on your smartwatch to get navigation directions.

The trick only works for Wear OS 3 smartwatches, not Wear OS 2 or older wearables.

Open Google Maps on your Wear OS 3 smartwatch. A list of your most visited places and recently searched locations displays. Select the location you want to visit. Or, use voice input or the keyboard to search for the location. Select whether you want walking, cycling, or driving directions to the searched address. An ETA for the three options displays on their respective cards.Google Maps for Wear OS home screen Google Maps for Wear OS ETA Accept the displayed terms and conditions if you’re using navigation on Google Maps’ Wear OS 3 app for the first time. Tap the icon at the bottom of the display to switch between text and Maps view for guidance on your watch. Scroll down and select Preview route to get a complete overview of the route.Google Maps for Wear OS - Step-by-step direction Google Maps for Wear OS - Preview route, Show Map options

Your Wear OS smartwatch vibrates when you need to take a turn or the Maps app needs your attention. If this behavior is annoying, scroll down from the directions page in the Maps Wear OS app and turn off

Starting navigation on your Wear OS watch launches Google Maps on your phone. If you don’t want this to happen, open Google Maps on your watch, scroll to the bottom, and select Settings. From there, tap Mirroring and then turn off Mirror on phone.

Google Maps for Wear OS - Mirroring option Google Maps for Wear OS - Mirror on phone toggle

Galaxy Watch 5 being worn on a wrist in front of a rocky background with the app drawer screen on Related

10 best Wear OS apps to install on your smartwatch in 2024

Looking for some apps to load up on your fancy new wrist computer? We’ve got you covered

How to mirror Google Maps directions from your phone to watch

When you use Google Maps navigation on your phone, you’ll get turn-by-turn directions on your watch for cycling, driving, and walking. By default, Google Maps doesn’t auto-launch on your Wear OS watch. Instead, an icon appears at the bottom of the watch face. Tap it to open Google Maps and see a preview of the directions.

You can change this behavior to auto-launch Google Maps on your Wear OS smartwatch.

Open the Google Maps app on your Wear OS smartwatch. Scroll down and select Settings. Tap Auto-launch. Select when you want the navigation to auto-launch from your phone: Driving, Walking, and Cycling.Google Maps for Wear OS - Settings menu Google Maps for Wear OS - Auto launch options

You get navigation directions on your watch even when your phone is locked.

How to use Google Assistant to get Google Maps directions on your Wear OS watch

You can use Google Assistant on your watch to ask for directions. This is often faster than using the Maps app on your phone or watch.

Trigger Google Assistant on your watch by saying, “OK Google.” If you turned off hotword detection, go to the app drawer and open the Google Assistant app. Ask the voice assistant for navigation directions to the address you want to go to. For example, “navigate to city center.” Google Maps for Wear OS opens and displays the transportation types and ETA. Select your preferred transport mode. You will see step-by-step directions on your Wear OS watch.Using Google Assistant on Wear OS to ask for navigation directions Google Maps navigation mode in Wear OS app

The process above works even if your watch is not paired with your phone, provided your wearable has LTE connectivity. “OK Google” not working is a common Wear OS problem, but solving it is relatively easy.

Public transit directions on Google Maps for Wear OS

Google recently announced public transit support for Maps on Wear OS. From now on, when you search for a location in Wear OS, Maps displays public transit with driving, cycling, and walking. When you pick a relevant option, such as bus, train, or ferry, it displays routes with departure times.

Using Google Maps on Wear OS: Our observations

Here are our quick observations after using Google Maps on Wear OS.

If Google Maps navigation isn’t working as expected, turn on location tracking on your watch and phone. An active battery-saver mode on your smartwatch can mess up Maps functions. Some voice actions aren’t available in all regions and languages. Google Maps on your smartwatch uses the distance unit you set on the paired phone.

Rely on your wrist for turn-by-turn navigation

Unlike Google Maps on your phone, the Wear OS version does not support Street View or location sharing. However, viewing live navigation from your wrist is handy, especially when cycling or walking down the street. Check out the top Google Maps tips and tricks to get more out of the app.

Source link