Google officially announced its first smartwatch at I/O 2022 in May, but only provided a “first look” before a full reveal this fall alongside the Pixel 7 and 7 Pro. 9to5Google has revealed a number of new details since then, and here’s everything we know about the Pixel Watch.
- Original: July 4th
- Update 1: September 1
- Update 2: September 20
Design, exhibition and materials.
The Pixel Watch is made up of three distinct layers, starting with a domed top glass that curves down to recycled stainless steel sides. Based on an initial measurement, the circular watch body is around 14mm thick and over 40mm wide, while the actual flat screen appears to be roughly 30mm wide (or 1.18 inches). Google has not revealed what the resolution of the screen is or what type of glass protects it.
There is a bottle cap shaped crown that rotates and can be pressed into the 3 o’clock position with a button just above it. The case also has a long speaker grille on the left edge and two small circular cutouts.
The top and bottom house fairly large band slots with the 20mm straps being attached via a patented mechanism that involves inserting them at an angle and then snapping them into place.
colors and bands
Google has shown off the Pixel Watch in three stainless steel colors:
- Silver: Bright and polished finish.
- Black: non-reflective, possibly a matte finish
- Gold: darker shade
In June we reported that Google was working on a wide collection of watch straps, though not all of them may make it to launch or be made directly by the company:
- Silicone band: Already shown by Google and very similar to Fitbit’s Infinity Bands
- cloth band
- elastic band
- Two leather straps: differentiated by style and lighter/darker tones
- Link Bracelet: Metal
- Milanese style mesh band: Made of stainless steel in colors to match the three body colors
Pixel Clock Specifications
9to5Google in May it reported that the Pixel Watch is powered by Samsung’s Exynos 9110. It features a coprocessor and over 1.5GB of RAM, which should beat what’s on offer in Wear OS today. Meanwhile, the 32GB of storage is double that of existing devices and allows users to store many songs offline.
That chip dates back to 2018 with the Tizen-powered Galaxy Watch, but several tasks need to be offloaded to the coprocessor. It is unclear how Google will identify this SoC and whether the Tensor brand will be applied.
We also reported that the Pixel Watch has a battery that comes in at just under 300mAh and should last a day. Charging is handled via a magnetic drive with USB-C on the other end.
In addition to Bluetooth and Wi-Fi connectivity, Google will offer an LTE cellular model of the Pixel Watch. Other known specs include built-in GPS and 50-meter water resistance.
Fitbit and health on the Pixel Watch
A big focus of the Pixel Watch is health, fitness, and exercise. Of course, there’s the Fitbit integration which offers a dashboard view of all your stats, just like on existing Fitbit devices, while Google Fit will also be offered.
The sensor array under the Pixel Watch looks identical to the Fitbit Luxe and Charge 5. There’s a heart rate sensor and hardware support for SpO2 (blood oxygen) and ECG (electrocardiogram) readings.
Wear OS and apps
The Pixel Watch runs Wear OS 3, but it remains to be seen how much Google personalizes the experience. It will be noticeably different from what Samsung has done (One UI Watch) and could be closer to the next Montblanc release or Fossil updates.
For example, there should be a simple list of apps instead of a circular bubble launcher, while you can swipe up to see notifications. Pull-down for quick settings hasn’t changed, while tiles are accessed by swiping vertically from the watch face.
We’ve already seen a preview of some clock faces that Google is working on. Layouts span digital and analog, and most offer slots with complications, like for Fitbit.
Google Assistant will no doubt be a big focus of attention, while Google Pay/Wallet taps to pay and Maps navigation. All of those apps exist today, but the company also showed off a Google Home app with a device feed and the ability to receive front door alerts.
Your Pixel Watch can unlock your Android device and Chromebook, while there will be a “Google Pixel Watch” companion app. Fast Pair should also be available to speed up connecting and switching Bluetooth headsets.
Pixel Watch price and launch
In late August, we reported that Google will price the cellular Pixel Watch with LTE at $399 in the US. We’ve since learned that the Wi-Fi/Bluetooth model costs $349.99. In addition, it will be available in a black case with an obsidian (black), silver/chalk (white-beige) and gold/hazelnut (green) strap. Default box/LTE band settings are almost the same except for Silver/Charcoal (gray).
This could change before the fall launch, which we can confirm is happening alongside the availability of the Pixel 7 and 7 Pro without interruption, if all goes according to plan. Carrier offerings should bring the price down, and we’ve already spotted evidence that Google Fi is gearing up support.
The Pixel Watch with Bluetooth/Wi-Fi will be cheaper, but so far Google’s offering is slightly more expensive than Samsung’s entry-level Galaxy Watch 5 ($279). One thing to note is the use of recycled stainless steel, which is usually a premium material, although sapphire crystal is not used.
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