Friday , October 20 2017

Ingress adds a hack button to your Android Wear watch

Ingress Android Wear

Google’s augmented reality game Ingress just got a little more augmented, with a new update to the app rolling out today with support for Android Wear watches.

Dedicated users doing teardowns of each new release of the Ingress app have seen nascent Android Wear support coming for a while, but with today’s update – v1.81.0 for those of you keeping track – the watch interface has gone public.

Ingress’ Android Wear support is currently all hack and no attack, showing a scrollable list of portals either within or near your scanner range. This can be a boon if you’re in a portal-dense area as you’ll no longer need to fiddle with your scanner’s rotation and zoom to get at stacked portals, and it also means you can hack a little more inconspicuously in meetings. If there are no portals in range you’ll get a direction and distance to each portal in the list, making use of your watch’s compass.

After you hack a portal, you’ll get to see your hack results on the screen along with a timer that tells you how long it’s been since you last hacked a portal (important for farmers!). As long as the app keeps running, your timer will be correct. The Wear app supports “active” mode so that it can keep your watch display on, but doesn’t seem to support the low-power black and white display mode.

Ingress Android Wear

The UI isn’t perfect – it sometimes takes a while to update, the scrolling list of portals seems to change unpredictably as you move around, and the constant “radar” animation is a bit much, but it’s still a great start. Hopefully we’ll see some refinement to the UI, along with some inventory and attack controls added soon.

Like Ingress on your phone, it’s likely that Ingress on your watch is draining your battery about as much (my G Watch R’s battery is under 60% and it’s only 10am). However, as Ingress players we’ve pretty much surrendered battery life in exchange for portal hacking abilities, so this isn’t much of a surprise. Maybe it’s time to buy that spare charging cradle to charge your watchscanner at your desk.

The v1.81.0 update is currently rolling out in the usual fashion (a random assortment of users get it first, and I was lucky enough to be in the initial batch this morning). If you haven’t got the update to the Ingress app yet, you can download it from APKMirror.

Have you hacked a portal from your wrist yet? Tell us what you think – and what else you’d like to see – in the comments.

 

Jason Murray   Deputy Editor

Before discovering the Nexus One, Jason thought he didn't need a smartphone. Now he can't bear to be without his Android phone. Jason hails from Sydney, Melbourne or Brisbane depending on his mood and how detailed a history you'd like. A web developer by day with an interest in consumer gadgets and electronics, he also enjoys reading comics and has a worryingly large collection of Transformers figures. He'd like to think he's a gamer, but his Wii has been in a box since he moved to Sydney, and his PlayStation Vita collection is quite lacking. Most mornings you'll find him tilting at various windmills on Twitter - follow @JM77 and say hi!

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2 Comments on "Ingress adds a hack button to your Android Wear watch"

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Paul White
Valued Guest
Paul White

Yep, I’ve avoided the desk cradle so far, but will be needing one after this release!

Roo
Valued Guest

Dude, Seriously, Leave my portals alone!

Any indication of glyph hacking as a possibility or just a tap hack?

wpDiscuz

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