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Google smartwatches now remind wearers to regularly wash their hands

Software update issues the reminder every three hours and provides a 40-second timer

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Google has pushed out a software update for its Wear OS smartwatch operating system, reminding users to wash their hands.

The new feature was pushed out via the new v5.4.0 software update, and is now a part of the Wear OS Clock application. Wear OS is used by a wide range of smartwatches from a number of manufacturers, including Fossil, TicWatch, Huawei, Tag Heuer, and a number of other fashion brands.

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By default, the app will alert users every three hours. When the notification has been acknowledged, the watch starts a 40-second countdown on its screen and reminds the wearer to use soap.

Regularly washing our hands is one of the best ways to protect ourselves from the coronavirus and prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Washing hands stock image Washing hands to prevent the spread of coronavirus Getty Images/iStockphoto

The CDC, WHO and others recommend that everyone washes their hands multiple times per day - especially after being outside of the home - and to wash them for at least 20 seconds with soap or, failing that, a hand sanitizer with at least 70 percent alcohol content.

Although the new Wear OS notification is switched on by default, it can be turned off in the settings menu.

It is recommended that readers remove their watch and jewelry before washing their hands. They should also remember that the virus can live on stainless steel - such as the strap or case of a watch - for up to 72 hours.

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