Wear OS is Google's platform for wearables, and actually only one of the two which supports Google Assistant functionality. The other one being Fitbit, which Google now owns too. While many claim that the firm neglects Wear OS, the platform does receive updates from time to time. However, a new report now claims that the "Hey Google" functionality has been broken on the operating system for several months, with Google only now starting to work on a fix.
9to5Google has cited multiple Reddit and Google Issue Tracker threads which indicate that the "Hey Google" and "OK Google" functionalities are broken on Wear OS. These voice commands are used to immediately trigger Google Assistant and enable ease of access rather than having to physically interact with the wearable.
To be fair, Google Assistant still works but now users have to manually fidget with their device's physical or on-screen controls in order to immediately trigger it. This arguably defeats much of the purpose of having a voice-controlled assistant on your smartwatch.
The good piece of news is that Google has finally acknowledged the flaw and confirmed that it is working on a fix. In a statement to The Verge, the company indicated that it is "aware of the issues some users have been encountering" and will assist partners and OEMs in fixing the problem. It remains to be seen how long Google will take to resolve the issue, but having a major bug on Wear OS for months and not acknowledging it until widespread backlash certainly does not instill confidence in the operating system.