​How to get music on your Android Wear smartwatch

​How to get music on your Android Wear smartwatch

Enjoy listening to music straight from your device
Playing music on your smartwatch

Android Wear devices can now store your music, so you can still get access to your favourite tunes when you go for a jog around the park. But how do you get your music on your smartwatch, and how do you link up your headphones to listen to them?

Essential reading: Top smartwatches for 2015

We've got down and dirty with our Android Wear smartwatch to show you how. Whether you're using an LG Watch Urbane, Moto 360 2 or Sony SmartWatch 3, here's our guide to getting music on your device.

1. Update the apps

The only app you're going to be able to do this with (for the time being at least) is Google's own Play Music. Make sure you're running the latest version of it on your Android device (the Play Store app will tell you), as well as the most recent version of Android Wear – go to Settings then About on your smartwatch to check.

2. Activate offline listening

music on my android wear smartwatch

'Offline listening' means the music is cached on your smartwatch to listen to even when your phone isn't around. To enable this feature, you need to flick a switch inside the Play Music app on your smartphone or tablet: tap Settings from the app's menu then tick the box marked Download to Android Wear to activate it (you may be prompted to enable this from the front screen of Play Music too).

3. Choose your songs

music on my android wear smartwatch

Use the orange pin buttons in Play Music to store selected tracks and albums on your smartphone or tablet, and by extension your Android Wear watch. Back on the Settings screen use the Manage Wear downloads option to decide which of your cached tracks are transferred to your smartwatch as well (remember you only have a few gigabytes to play around with).

4. Sync the music

The syncing should happen automatically once you've activated the right setting in Play Music and picked some songs to download – if not, make sure that your smartwatch is properly connected to your smartphone. A notification on the watch itself will keep you up to date with the progress of the music transfer.

5. Find some headphones

All the Android Wear devices on the market today use Bluetooth to connect up a pair of headphones, so you're going to need to get yourself a set.

Essential reading: Best Bluetooth headphones for running

The supplied instructions will tell you how to get the headphones in pairing mode, at which point you're ready to redirect your attention back to your watch.

6. Make the connection

Head into the Android Wear Settings screen on your smartwatch then choose Bluetooth devices. At this stage the watch will automatically scan for nearby Bluetooth kit, and it should pick up the headphones while they're in pairing mode – select the headphones when they appear to complete the connection.

7. Play some music

You can access Play Music from the main Android Wear menu (swipe left to find the apps list) or by saying "play music" when your smartwatch is listening. There are two options – playing music on your phone or playing it on your watch – and the most recent one will be selected by default.

8. Change modes

If you don't want to use Play Music in its current mode, tap the large cross icon before the app launches and you'll be given the chance to change it. If the music is being played on your phone then you still have the opportunity to control it from your wrist, so you'll probably want to switch modes regularly.

9. Control playback

Once playback starts you'll see a small widget appear on the Android Wear watch face that lets you pause and resume playback. Swipe this up to see the current track then swipe left to access volume and track skipping controls. Swipe left again and you can rate the current track with a thumbs up or a thumbs down from your wrist.

10. Troubleshoot problems

Bluetooth isn't the most reliable of technologies, so if you run into problems then resetting your devices or starting again from scratch will usually be enough to clear them up. Testing your headphones with another device (like your laptop) can help you determine whether problems are caused by the headphones or your smartwatch.

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8 Comments

  • Mayush says:

    Thank for the tutorial but I have a problem. When I open play music settings, I cannot see download to Android wear option. 

    • childofibiza says:

      me too.. I have a Moto X 2nd Gen with Lollipop and i don't see it either.. 

  • gdongg says:

    Recently got the Sony Smartwatch 3 and I wanted sync some songd to the watch but i dont have "Download to Android Wear" option on my phone GOogle Play. Is there any thing I need to do. Im using a OnePlusOne. Thanks

  • LeonPhelps says:

    I feel your pain guys.   I have the exact same problem and it's very frustrating!  If anyone discovers a solution for not seeing the download icon,  please let us all know.  If I find it,  I promise to do the same. 

    • AntoniKoo says:

      Bro, try and search for wearmedia by qubinapps. I had the same problem (from indonesia) and now im happily listening music from my sony smartwatch 3 haha.. spread the good news!!

  • Wear3 says:

    i have a new bought SW3 and my problem that keeps on searching solution until now is about loading offline music. Using my S5, loaded with songs connect to my SW3 and already check the box option "download to Android Wear" on play music apps but when i try to tick the 3 dots at the right side of the playlist, there was no DOWNLOAD options. Is there any ways to load music on my SW3?.

  • OpsManDan says:

    argh! Same frustrating problem! I've got the App on my nexus 6 which has the download to Android wear button, but I can't seem to download music to my Sony smartwatch 3 >.< 

  • smileman says:

    Oddly, syncing with Sony's Music app seems to work better for me than Google Music on the Moto Sport 360. When I tap "Manage Wear downloads" nothing happens.

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