After years of being in the rumor mill, Google’s purchase of Fitbit made a Pixel-branded smartwatch an inevitability. A pair of reports from Business Insider and the Verge in late 2021 pinned 2022 as the year the oft-rumored Pixel Watch would finally be released. In the months following that, we’ve learned a bit about the device, including by way of a physical leak in the style of the iPhone 4 from so many years ago.
Pricing and Availability
The Pixel Watch is expected to make a debut at Google I/O alongside the Pixel 6a. This won’t be a full launch, according to leaker Jon Prosser. It’ll be “teased,” likely akin to the Pixel 4, 5, and 6 pre-launch announcements where some details are teased and others are held close to the chest. A full launch is predicted to be in October, alongside the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro. Either way, nearly every reliable source expects the Pixel Watch to break cover soon.
Google I/O ’22 👇
From what I understand, Google will officially be announcing the Pixel 6a + “teasing” the Pixel Watch.
Pixel 6a launch (in most markets) pushed to July 28th.
Pixel Watch will be formally announced and launched with Pixel 7 and 7 Pro in October. pic.twitter.com/IwwRX2pZtR
— Jon Prosser (@jon_prosser) March 24, 2022
As far as pricing goes, the Pixel Watch is expected to cost between $300 and $400, according to tipster Yogesh Brar. That’ll make it an Apple Watch Series 7 competitor in terms of pricing. Google has often priced its products — think Pixel Buds, PixelBook, and Pixel proper — close to what Apple’s equivalents would be. Whatever you think of the wisdom of that approach, there’s precedent for a slightly pricy Pixel Watch.
The Pixel Watch has already leaked physically in addition to renders. We have a daily good idea of what it looks like, with a minimal design with a round chassis, a single crown, and at least a silver colorway. Google’s designs have always been serviceable and comfortable, and the Pixel Watch does not appear to deviate.
Describing the Pixel Watch, the source of the physical leak, tagtech414, wrote on reddit: “This is the most comfortable watch I’ve ever worn. It feels much thinner than the measurements would lead you to believe. Compared to my Galaxy Watch, this feels like it’s not even there. And, big plus, the crown does NOT poke into the back of my hand when bending my wrist back or typing, which is something that drives me nuts on other watches. The band is a soft silicone with good flex and doesn’t seem to show fingerprints/oil too badly which is great.”
As for colors, carrier inventory records reported by Android Police say it’ll be in gray, black, and gold colorways, much like the Pixel 6 Pro and the Fitbit Sense.
The Pixel Watch is reportedly equipped with Wear OS 3.1, a newer version of Wear OS than what runs on the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 and Watch 4 Classic.
It’ll be the first time we see the Google’s Wear OS without a Samsung overlay. The company promised faster app startups, smoother animations, and enhanced battery life. The design, from emulators, is also quite similar to the Material You design Google is currently using on Android smartphones and tablets.
Outside of the Galaxy Watch 4, we haven’t really seen the true potential of Wear OS 3 as showcased by Google in 2021’s I/O. The Pixel Watch may well turn out to be our first chance if the likes of Fossil and Mobvoi don’t start rolling out their updates in the meantime.
At the same time, we can also expect the Pixel Watch to feature integration with Fitbit. Google purchased the fitness band manufacturer in 2021 and had committed to using its technology to power new products. A Pixel Watch would be the perfect time to showcase that, especially with Apple and Samsung focusing heavily on health for their respective smartwatches.
Hardware and sensors
Credit: Jon Prosser / Ian Zelbo
We know little about the Pixel Watch sensors. However, if it is running Wear OS 3, we can expect it to be reasonably powerful. Data from the Wear OS 3 emulator pins it as likely coming with an Exynos processor and at least 1GB of RAM. Referring back to tipster Yogesh Brar, this Exynos chip can be construed to be part of a continued partnership between Samsung and Google. It’s worth noting that Samsung also helps make the Tensor chip that powers the Pixel 6 and 6 Pro, so it makes a lot of sense for Google to continue to lean on them.
Got some info on Pixel Watch from a relatively new source
1) Google Samsung partnership here as well.
2) Same sensors as Galaxy Watch (ECG & more)
3) new WearOS 3.1 build
4) 2 sizes, atleast 4 color watch bands.
5) Limited release, priced between $300-400
— Yogesh Brar (@heyitsyogesh) April 27, 2022
Brar also claims the Watch would sport the same sensors as the Galaxy Watch 4, which include an Accelerometer, Barometer, Gyro Sensor, Geomagnetic Sensor, Light Sensor, Optical Heart Rate Sensor, Electrical heart sensor, and a Bioelectrical Impedance Analysis Sensor.