Google, Not Device Makers, Will Control Android Wear, Auto and TV UI

When Android Wear, Android Auto and Android TV launch this fall, they'll solve a problem that has plagued Android since day one: an inconsistent user experience across devices. Ars Technica's Andrew Cunningham points out that unlike Android phones from different manufacturers that sport ugly custom UIs, launchers and interacting with Android on different smartwatches was exactly the same. In fact, Google's engineering director, David Burke, told Cunningham that with Wear, Auto and TV, the underlying software and interfaces will be controlled by Google, not the OEMs.

"The UI is more part of the product in this case," Burke said to Ars of Android TV in particular. "We want to just have a very consistent user experience, so if you have one TV in one room and another TV in another room and they both say Android TV, we want them to work the same and look the same... The device manufacturers can brand it, and they might have services that they want to include with it, but otherwise it should be the same."

The plan, says Burke, is to update these Android products seamlessly over time like Chrome OS.

Google announced that the next version of Android (codenamed "Android L") would sport a brand new Material Design. It makes sense that at least with its new products, it wants OEMs to stick to its new design philosophy and not muck it up with their own stuff. [Ars Technica]