It's only been a few days since the first Android Wear apps hit Google Play, but some users have already encountered a major bug preventing them from downloading paid apps.
The problem, first reported by Android Police, seems to be caused by Google's app encryption.
The way Android Wear apps are downloaded is handled differently from other Android smartphone and tablet apps. Since an Android Wear app sends notifications via its smartphone-app counterpart, watch apps are automatically downloaded to your smartwatch if you have the existing smartphone app from Google Play.
If you download Runtastic's Android app from Google Play, for example, its Android Wear counterpart will automatically download. At least it should. Where users are encountering issues is when they try to download a paid Android Wear app.
In order to block pirating, Google encrypts paid apps in a way that ties them to specific devices. This encryption apparently prevents Android Wear from recognizing the apps. As Android Police explained: "It seems the Android Wear install process runs into a road block with paid apps because it doesn't know how to extract the file of the encrypted apk. Since the installer fails to recognize the payload, it assumes there is nothing to install and silently aborts."
While most Android Wear apps currently available are free, this is obviously a problem for Google, as well as developers and users. The company will likely come up with a fix in the near future, but until then, it's best to avoid paid Android Wear apps.
Google has not yet commented on the issue or revealed whether a fix is in the works. The company did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Tags: ANDROID APPS, ANDROID WEAR, APPS AND SOFTWARE, APPS-AND-SOFTWARE, GOOGLE PLAY, Tech