With the announcement of a Pixel Watch, we can expect that Google pays closer attention to Wear OS, considering this system is not exactly a pinnacle of wearable performance and quality. A quite prominent problem is the long-lasting Download Pending message on Wear OS. Users can’t download or update apps because the Play Store repeatedly gets stuck. If that’s also the case with you, make sure to check the solutions we provided below.
Table of contents:
- Restart your watch
- Check the network
- Use Play Store on your watch
- Uninstall the app and install it again
- Reset the watch to factory settings
Play Store says “Download pending” on Wear OS
1. Restart your watch
Start with a restart. Wear OS showed pretty underwhelming results when it comes to stability and performance, especially on devices running Qualcomm Wear 3100 and older. This doesn’t necessarily mean that your device will be inherently slow, but multitasking is not exactly a strong suit for Wear OS-powered devices. For that and other reasons, whenever you run into a halt of sorts, make sure to restart your watch.
You can do that by pressing the Power button for 3 seconds or you can open Settings > System and restart your watch there. On Galaxy Watch 4, swipe down the Quick Access menu and then power off your watch. After your watch boots into the system, connect to Wi-Fi and try downloading or updating apps from Play Store again.
2. Check the network
The next thing to check is the network. Make sure that your watch is connected to a stable Wi-Fi network. Some Wear OS wearables use Wi-Fi only when the watch is not connected to a phone over Bluetooth, and we suggest avoiding this if the downloads are pending for an extended period. Stick with the Wi-Fi on your watch.
3. Use Play Store on your watch
You can install apps on your smartwatch from Play Store on your phone or PC but that’s where the Download pending issues on Wear OS mostly come from. This feature allows you to add downloads to the queue but it’s not as reliable as one would expect. The most reliable way is to download apps directly from your watch.
Therefore, open the Play Store on your Wear OS device and search for the app. Most apps you’ll ever need can be in one of a few categories.
4. Uninstall the app and install it again
If your watch gets stuck while updating an app, you might want to reinstall the app. You can reinstall apps on Wear OS watches from Play Store. Just select My apps and uninstall the app from there. Restart your watch, install the app again, and hopefully, you won’t run into update issues anymore.
On the other hand, if installation itself is the problem and the Play Store is stuck in the neverending Download Pending loop, you should reset your watch to factory settings. This should be the ultimate solution for this and other Wear OS problems.
5. Reset the watch to factory settings
Finally, the only thing we can recommend is resetting your watch to factory settings and setting it up again. Although this procedure can be a bit tedious, it’s your best bet to solve major issues on Wear OS. To reset your watch, open Settings > System and select Disconnect and reset or Unpair with the phone. On Galaxy Watch 4, open Settings > General > Reset.
After that, reinstall the Wear OS app on your phone and set up the watch again. And, with that said, we can conclude this article. Thank you for reading and don’t forget to tell us about alternative solutions that worked for you in the comments section below.
Editor’s note: This article was initially published in May 2022. We made sure to revamp it for freshness and accuracy.