Much of the IT world is abuzz this week due to Google’s announcement of its Android Wear operating system (OS) and SDK for wearable computing and communications devices. Motorola and LG announced smartwatches built to use Android Wear, and the mainstream media and tech media alike are focusing on the “smartwatch” aspect, comparing what could be coming to products already in the market and to Apple’s yet-to-be announced smartwatch offering.

Not all details regarding Android Wear have been released as of this writing. What we do know is that Google is aiming first at the fitness niche, promoting the availability of “real-time speed, distance and time information on your wrist for your run, cycle, or walk.” Google Maps will be included, as will the Google Now card-based reminder/information application. And Google indicates that Wear will also enable multi-device functionality – e.g., users can voice a command to the watch to activate certain apps on other devices enabled by the OS, which could include thermostats in the home, entertainment systems in an automobile, and more.

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