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Wear app quality

Android Wear aims to provide users with just the right information at just the right time. Great Android Wear experiences are launched automatically, glanceable, and require zero or low user interaction. Designing apps for wearables is substantially different to designing for phones or tablets. There are different strengths and weaknesses, different use cases, and different ergonomics to take into consideration.

The first step toward creating a great experience for users on Wear is to read the Android Wear design guidelines, which provide instructions on how to build the best user experience for Wear apps. You should also review the Building Apps for Wearables training, to understand the fundamental implementation requirements for a Wear app.

This page helps you assess the core aspects of quality in your Wear app through a compact set of functional and user interface quality criteria.

Important: To ensure a great user experience, apps for wearables must meet specific requirements for usability. Only apps that meet the following quality criteria will qualify as an Android Wear app on Google Play. Qualifying as a Wear app will make it easier for Android Wear users to discover your app on Google Play.

Note: For information about how to publish your Wear apps in Google Play, see Distributing to Android Wear.

Functionality

These criteria ensure that your app is configured correctly and provides the expected functional behavior.

Table 1. Functional criteria.

Type ID Description
General WR-GL

App includes a watch APK that runs directly on the Wear device and is discoverable in the Android Wear 2.0 on-watch Play Store. (Learn how)

WR-BF

Wear functionality works as expected or as described in the app's Google Play Store listing.

WR-FR

Notifications for messaging apps enable users to reply via RemoteInput. ( Learn how)

Visual design and user interaction

These criteria ensure that your app follows critical design and interaction patterns to provide a consistent, intuitive, and enjoyable user experience on wearables.

Important: Having rich notifications is no longer sufficient to pass Wear app quality review.

Table 2. Visual criteria.

Type ID Description
Layout WR-LS

The app's user interface is formatted appropriately for square displays. The app's content fits within the physical display area, and no text or controls are cut off by the screen edges.
(Learn how)

WR-LR

The app's user interface is formatted appropriately for round displays including devices with an inset (or "chin") at the bottom of the screen. The app's content fits within the physical display area, and no text or controls are cut off by the screen edges.
(Learn how)

WR-TC

The app's text is large and glanceable with a suggested minimum size of 12sp. (Learn how)

Notifications WR-NC

The app displays confirmation animations when appropriate. (Learn how)

Google Play WR-GS

The app includes at least one Wear screenshot in its Play store listing. (Learn how)

Frequently asked questions

After I submit my app for Android Wear review, how will I find out if my app does not meet all the requirements for Wear?

If your app does not meet the usability requirements described on this page, the Play store team will contact you through the email address specified in the Google Play Console account associated with the app.

Caution: Make sure your app meets the functionality requirements, otherwise your app will not be considered a Wear app and will not be reviewed for Wear design and interaction.

Note: For information about how to publish your Wear apps in Google Play, see Distributing to Android Wear.

If my app does not meet the Wear requirements, will my new or updated app still appear on Google Play for other devices and still be installable on wearables?

Yes. The requirements described above only determine whether your app will be identified as an Android Wear app on Google Play and therefore be easier for Android Wear users to discover. If your app is not accepted as a Wear app, it will still be available to other device types, such as phones and tablets, and it will still be installable on wearables.

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