Add complications to a watch face

A watch face complication displays data from a data source. With the Complications API, watch faces can choose the data sources they want to use to get the underlying data. This enables watch faces to display information beyond the time of day without needing code for getting the data.

Use a ComplicationSlotsManager

To add complications to a watch face, use a ComplicationSlotsManager.

The ComplicationSlotsManager defines how many complications a watch face supports, and where they are positioned on the screen. To support changing the location or number of complications, the ComplicationSlotsManager also uses the CurrentUserStyleRepository as shown in the following example:

 override fun createComplicationSlotsManager(
        currentUserStyleRepository: CurrentUserStyleRepository
    ): ComplicationSlotsManager {
        val defaultCanvasComplicationFactory =
            CanvasComplicationFactory { watchState, listener ->
                // ...
            }
    
        val leftComplicationSlot = ComplicationSlot.createRoundRectComplicationSlotBuilder(
            id = 100,
            canvasComplicationFactory = defaultCanvasComplicationFactory,
            // ...
        )
            .setDefaultDataSourceType(ComplicationType.SHORT_TEXT)
            .build()
    
        val rightComplicationSlot = ComplicationSlot.createRoundRectComplicationSlotBuilder(
            id = 101,
            canvasComplicationFactory = defaultCanvasComplicationFactory,
            // ...
        )
            .setDefaultDataSourceType(ComplicationType.SHORT_TEXT)
            .build()

        return ComplicationSlotsManager(
            listOf(leftComplicationSlot, rightComplicationSlot),
            currentUserStyleRepository
        )
 }

Types and fields

The following table describes the types and fields of the ComplicationData object. If a watch face requests a field that is invalid for a complication type, a default value for the field is returned. For example, if a watch face tries to access a LONG_TEXT field in a SHORT_TEXT type, the default value for the LONG_TEXT field, null, is returned.

Type Required fields Optional fields Notes
SHORT_TEXT Short text Icon
Burn-in protection icon
Short title
Show only one icon or short title if either or both are provided.
ICON Icon Burn-in protection icon Used when text is not needed. The icon is expected to be single-color, and may be tinted by the watch face.
RANGED_VALUE Value
Min value
Max value
Icon
Burn-in protection icon
Short text
Short title
Optional fields are not guaranteed to be displayed. If you want to draw your own progress bar, you can use the isRangedValueProgressHidden() method to hide the progress bar provided by the ComplicationDrawable class.
LONG_TEXT Long text Long title
Icon
Burn-in protection icon
Small image
Show the long title if it's provided.
SMALL_IMAGE Small image A small image has one of two styles: photo style or icon style. Photo style means it should fill the space and can be cropped; icon style means it should not be cropped and may be padded. Image variability can result in an unsuitable image for display in ambient mode on devices with burn-in protection or with low-bit ambient mode. When burn-in protection or low-bit ambient mode is enabled, the watch face may use the Burn-in protection small image because it is safe. Otherwise, since it is hard for a watch face to determine suitability, an image should not be displayed.
LARGE_IMAGE Large image This image is expected to be large enough to fill the watch face. Image variability can result in an unsuitable image for display in ambient mode on devices with burn-in protection or with low-bit ambient mode. Since it is hard for a watch face to determine suitability for display, a watch face should not display an image in ambient mode if burn-in protection or low-bit ambient is enabled.

The types in the table below are for empty data and may be sent for any complication slot. These types have no fields and do not need to be included in a list of supported types. These types enable watch faces to differentiate among the following three cases:

  • No source was chosen
  • The user has selected "empty" for a slot
  • A source has no data to send

Sources should not send TYPE_EMPTY in response to update requests. Sources should send TYPE_NO_DATA instead.

Details on the complication types for "empty" data are in the following table:

Complication type Description
TYPE_NOT_CONFIGURED Sent by the system when a complication is activated but the user has not selected a source, and no default was set.

Cannot be sent by sources.

TYPE_EMPTY Sent by the system when a complication is activated and the user has chosen "empty" instead of a source, or when the watch face has chosen no source and this complication type as the default.

Cannot be sent by sources.

TYPE_NO_DATA Sent by the system when a complication (that has a source) is activated to clear the complication before actual data is received from the source.

Should be sent by sources if they have no actual data to send.

For more information, check out the watchface sample on GitHub.