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Google Pixel Watch: here's everything we know so far

Google IO
(Image credit: Future)
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It feels like we've been waiting an eternity for any sort of official Pixel Watch confirmation or news, but now finally we have it, as during Google IO 2022, the company revealed the wearable.

Technically this is more of a tease than a full announcement - that will be coming later this year, but Google was generous with its revelations, showing off the design and talking about what the wearable is capable of - as well as confirming that Fitbit tech will be included.

Below you'll find everything that we've seen and heard about the Google Pixel Watch so far, both officially and in the realm of rumors. Will it be enough to trouble the best smartwatches currently available? Only time will tell.

Cut to the chase

  • What is it? The first flagship watch designed by Google
  • What will it cost? Probably a high-end cost, but no specifics yet
  • When is it out? Later this year - probably October

Latest News

May 11: Google has officially shown off the Pixel Watch, and revealed a number of its features.

May 10: We're just a day away from Google IO 2022 and the possible launch of the Pixel Watch. Here's how to watch the Google IO live stream.

April 30: More leaks have dripped out, potentially revealing the Pixel Watch battery size and connectivity options. 

April 28: Three different Pixel Watch models have been certified, and we now have a clearer idea of the possible price.

April 26: Apparently a Google Pixel Watch was left in a restaurant, and now we have loads of pictures of the thing as a result.

April 25: We could also see a Pixel Watch Fit with a high price, and leaked photos may have given us a look at the Pixel Watch.

April 24: A trademark for the Pixel Watch name has now been filed by Google in another sign that it's coming soon.

April 15:  As per well-respected leaker Evan Blass, it "won't be long now" before we see the wearable get its official unveiling by Google. Blass Also cites the Pixel's apparent code name: Pixel Rohan.

March 28: Are we still waiting? The Pixel Watch will be unveiled at I/O but won't launch until October, alongside the Pixel 7 and the Pixel 7 Pro, says tech tipster Jon Prosser.

Release Date and Price

Google Pixel Watch

(Image credit: Google)

Google has now confirmed that the Pixel Watch will be coming this 'fall' - likely meaning between September and November. But the company also said it would be announced alongside the Pixel 7, which based on past form will probably land in October - which is a month that one source had already pointed to

That's later than we expected, with lots of signs suggesting it would go on sale imminently. For example, the wearable had reportedly been spotted on a carrier's inventory system in the US, suggesting they're preparing it for sale.

However, it might not launch everywhere, with one source saying it will get a "limited release", though the US and UK look likely to be included.

As for price, one leak puts the price of a 'Pixel Watch Fit' at around $400 (roughly £315 / AU$555). That would put it inline with the Apple Watch 7, but it's not clear if this is the main Pixel Watch (which we now know doesn't have 'Fit' in the name) or a spin-off.

A slightly more recent price leak has now said that it could cost between $300 (roughly £240 / AU$420) and $400.

Design and Display

There's not much need for design leaks because Google itself has shown us what the Pixel Watch looks like, as you can see in the images above.

This includes a circular screen, a - presumably rotatable - crown, and a build made of recycled stainless steel. The company also promises customizable bands that will seamlessly attach.

The design matches the leaks, including leaked photos of what appears to be the Pixel Watch in the flesh. These show it in black with a circular screen, a thick build, and small bezels. They also show a crown, at least one physical button, and a proprietary strap connector.

Finally, a US carrier has listed the wearable as coming in gray, black and gold shades.

Specs and Features

Google didn't reveal much about specs, but has said that the Pixel Watch includes Fitbit tech, which powers things like sleep tracking, heart rate monitoring, lets you view active zone minutes, and lets you track your progress against personal fitness goals.

Google Pixel Watch

(Image credit: Google)

Beyond that, Google has also talked about Wear OS on the device, saying that the operating system is better than ever here - and feels more fluid under the finger.

It will let you do all the things you'd expect from Google, like make contactless payments, use Google Maps (even when you leave your phone at home), talk to Google Assistant, and control your smart home devices from your wrist.

One slight disappointment though is that it will only work with Android, so iPhone owners are out of luck.

Google Pixel Watch

(Image credit: Google)

Beyond that we're in leaks territory for now, but we're starting to get quite a clear picture in terms of the specs of the Google Pixel Watch. One rather disappointing rumor suggests the wearable will come running an older chipset.

Recent leaks have also revealed that the wearable will come with a 300mAh battery (like the Fossil Gen 6) and offer cellular connectivity on at least one model, so you can make and receive calls even when your phone isn't connected.

One source suggests it will use a 5nm chipset - likely the same one as the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 has. Since then more evidence of a Samsung Exynos chip has emerged, so this is likely.

A carrier's inventory system also lists the wearable as coming with 32GB of storage, and its presence there suggests there will probably be a cellular version, as this carrier has never sold a non-cellular smartwatch.

Elsewhere, possible watch faces for the Pixel Watch have also leaked, showing things like step counts, heart rate and the weather. Interestingly, one also includes a Fitbit logo, suggesting the Pixel Watch could incorporate some Fitbit features.

There's other evidence that there could be a big focus on fitness too, both because Google has bought Fitbit, and because Google sent out a survey asking people about features they'd like to see in Wear OS, and those features included things like SPO2 (oxygenation) tracking, sleep apnea detection, sleep analysis, heartbeat alerts, recovery time monitoring, stress tracking, pairing for medical devices and gym equipment, rep detection, and calorie tracking.

Of course, it's unlikely they would all be added, but some may well be, and it shows that Google is thinking about health and fitness.

Wear OS is the latest version of Google's smartwatch operating system

Wear OS is the latest version of Google's smartwatch operating system

One rumored feature was something codenamed 'Blackghost'. It was thought to be be a power management integrated circuit built into the chipset itself that will allow the watch to listen out for voice commands at all times without draining the battery.

If this does appear, expect to be able to ask Google Assistant questions without either draining your smartwatch after a few hours or having to press a button beforehand.

Similarly, we've now heard that the Pixel Watch might support on-device processing for Google Assistant, which could speed the service up. A new-look design for Assistant has also leaked, as you can see below.

An image showing how Google Assistant might look on the Pixel Watch

(Image credit: 9to5Google / Google)

Another report - this time from WinFuture (opens in new tab) - has suggested there may actually be three versions of the Pixel Watch in development. The website has heard word of devices with code names Ling, Triton and Sardine all in development at Google HQ. 

Exactly what the differences for the devices would be are currently unclear. It may mean we'll see three variants of the Pixel Watch. That same report also suggested at least one version of the watch will come with 1GB of RAM.

This report could mean there will be one watch in the range with LTE or another that's designed to be more focused on fitness. This report is also quite old now, so it may no longer be relevant.

That said, three different Pixel Watch models seem to have now been certified, and we've heard that there could be a spin-off called the Pixel Watch Fit. One source also points to two different sizes of watch, which is another way the models could differ.

We've also seen a Google patent, which details a gesture control system that would allow a smartwatch to detect movements you make with your arm, wrist or fingers.

For example, you could make a fist to launch Google Assistant and open the fist to dismiss it. These gestures would be done on the arm or hand that the watch is worn on. However, patents aren't always used, so there's no guarantee we'll see this.

What We'd Like to See

Below we've put together a list of the things we want to see from the Google Pixel Watch.

1. Rotating crown or bezel

Samsung's Gear Sport uses a rotating bezel

Samsung's Gear Sport uses a rotating bezel

Before the switch to Wear OS, Android Wear 2.0 put a big focus on how the design had been reworked to play well with rotating bezels and crowns, but then we haven't seen many watches embrace that. 

Why not use it for the Google Pixel Watch? Those features may be far in Google's rear view mirror as the Wear OS updates take precedent, but we'd love to see an innovative way of interacting with the watch such as a rotating crown or bezel.

2. In-display fingerprint scanner

If Google really wants to put the Pixel Watch on the map, adding an in-display fingerprint scanner would go a long way to doing that. Currently Wear OS watches (and the Apple Watch) allow you to secure them with a PIN code – but that’s not the most secure form of protection available.

With an in-display fingerprint scanner, the secure biometric technology would fit seamlessly into the wearable without disrupting the visual appeal of the watch. It would also allow you to approve purchases over the current contactless limit (assuming the Pixel Watch comes with NFC).

There are a couple of potential negatives here though. Firstly, the addition of this fledgling technology could increase the thickness of the watch – and no one wants an overly chunky wearable – but secondly it’ll also likely push the price tag way up.

If Google can overcome these two things though, you can sign us up for a Pixel Watch right now.

3. Swimproof

We’re used to smartwatches coming with a level of dust and water resistance, but few carry an IP certification high enough to ensure their survival when we cannonball into the local pool.

A fully swim-proof Google Pixel Watch would not only allow you to keep the wearable on in the bath, but also allow you to track workouts in the pool without fear of malfunction.

4. Three day battery life

The new enhanced battery saver mode on Wear OS

The new enhanced battery saver mode on Wear OS

This is a simple one, but we want the Google Pixel Watch to last as long as it can. Imagine a fully fledged smartwatch that doesn't need charging after two days of intensive usage.

Wear OS is integrating a useful enhanced battery saver mode that should give you a lot more time with your smartwatch, but it'll limit the amount of features you can use when it's on.

Clearly Google wants to improve how long your watch will last from one charge, but we'd love to see a big battery inside the watch and well optimized software that offers the best battery for a smartwatch on the market right now.

5. NFC payments

Another simple one here, but quite a few Wear OS watches don't come with NFC built in so you aren't able to use Google Pay features on your wrist. That's a frustration for a lot of people, so we're hoping Google will include an NFC chip inside the watch.

That'll especially be useful when you're out for a run and you need to buy a bottle of water, but you've left your wallet at home.

6. Best in class fitness

Garmin's Forerunner 935 comes with a lot of fitness features built-in.

Garmin's Forerunner 935 comes with a lot of fitness features built-in.

While we're on the topic of running, we want the Pixel Watch to compete with the fitness prowess of the Apple Watch 3 as well as top-end specialist watches like the Garmin Forerunner 935.

Imagine if Google can include all of the latest tracking tech including accurate GPS, LTE so we can listen to music on the go as well as a top of the range heart rate tracker.

We want to be able to strap the Google Pixel Watch to our wrist and head out for any type of exercise and know we'll be tracked accurately and get as much fitness stats as we possibly can.

7. High-end watch design

This one is a given, but we want to see a watch that you're not embarrassed to wear on your wrist. Not every Wear OS watch is a gorgeous creation, so we wish Google will be able to offer a slimmer option than most other manufacturers that uses high-end materials and feels like a proper timepiece you're excited to wear.

If you're going to be spending a fair amount of money on a new watch, you'll want it to look great on your wrist so this is one of the most important things we want to see on the new wearable.

James Peckham
James Peckham

James is Managing Editor for Android Police. Previously, he was Senior Phones Editor for TechRadar, and he has covered smartphones and the mobile space for the best part of a decade bringing you news on all the big announcements from top manufacturers making mobile phones and other portable gadgets. James is often testing out and reviewing the latest and greatest mobile phones, smartwatches, tablets, virtual reality headsets, fitness trackers and more. He once fell over.