Google has made a change to Wear OS, so it’s easier for left-handed people to wear and use.
Unlike Apple Watch, there has historically been no way to change the orientation of a Wear OS smartwatch, so it can be worn on the opposite wrist and have access to the side buttons and pushers, that are positioned on the right-hand side of the case.
If you’re familiar with Wear OS it probably won’t surprise you to know that the left hander issue has been in Google’s Issue Tracker since 2018.
That’s now been fixed – but there’s a catch. If you read the feedback literally, the feature will only be available for new Wear OS watches, which means it won’t show up up in Wear OS 3.0 and roll out to existing smartwatches such as the Fossil Gen 6 or TicWatch Pro 3.
The post on the Issue Tracker said: “Our development team has implemented the feature you have requested and will be available on future new devices.”
That response has incensed those tracking the issue, and many see it as a basic accessibility feature.And there doesn’t seem to be a good reason why the feature will only roll to new smartwatches.
It’s entirely possible that the engineer or moderator charged with posting on the board isn’t fully aware of the situation, or plans for its implementation. We’ve reached out to Google to see if we can get some more clarity about the situation.
Previously, some of the orientation issues were covered by a third party Wear OS app called Lefty. However, that app isn’t able to reconfigure hardware buttons or reverse the scroll of digital crowns.
We’ll update this with any new information as we get it.