Here’s how to try Android ar’s interface on your phone today (sort of)

BY GreenBot Staff

Published 20 Mar 2014

To get a sense of how Android ar works, you could just read through ‘s official documentation. But for the more adventurous, why not install the launcher on your Android phone?

The Android ar launcher is easy to set up, as long as you’ve enabled installation of apps from unknown sources. st head to Android lice grab the A file from on one of the mirror links at the bottom of the post.

Once installed, you’ll see an option to open the “Android ar” launcher when pressing the home button. A prompt will then ask you to approve Android ar in the phone’s accessibility settings, after that you’ll be ready to check it out.


Turn-by-turn directions with Android ar.

Keep in mind, however, that the launcher is an extremely rough approximation of ‘s smartwatch experience. Now music playback controls did not appear when testing on an HTC One, voice comms are not yet supported. Unless you have a bunch of items in the phone’s notification bar, there’s not much to look at.

Still, you can get a general feel for how the interface works, especially if you get a notification from Gmail. Swiping up or down switches between notifications, every time you tap on a Gmail notification, you’ll see a little more of the text. Swiping from left to right dismisses the notification, swiping from right to left brings up potential actions, such as deleting an e-mail or responding by voice. Think of it as a magnified version of Android’s notification bar, with some additional actions Now functionality sprinkled in.

If you really want to go in-depth, Android lice has instructions for installing the Android ar emulator on a computer, but this is a much lengthier process.

announced Android ar earlier this week, in hopes of getting developers to optimize their existing apps for smartwatch use. The first Android ar watches from Motorola will arrive in the second quarter this summer, respectively.