A Google-branded smartwatch has been rumoured for some time - no pun intended - but it has yet to materialise despite the WearOS platform running numerous third-party smartwatches.
Speculation suggests that a Pixel Watch is finally coming though, it's just a matter of when. Here is everything we know so far.
Google Pixel Watch release date
- 9 October originally rumoured
- No longer expected this year
Google is holding its fall event on 9 October in New York. The company is expected to reveal its new Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL smartphones at the event, but there has also been talk of the company unveiling a Pixel-branded watch too.
Notorious leakster Evan Blass tweeted in May that a reliable source told him "with high confidence" that a Pixel-branded watch would also appear at the fall hardware event alongside the two smartphones and second-gen Pixel Buds.
Besides the Pixel 3, Pixel 3 XL, and second-gen Pixel Buds, a reliable source tells me -- with high confidence -- that Google's fall hardware event will also introduce a Pixel-branded watch. Have a great summer!— Evan Blass (@evleaks) May 10, 2018
The Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL have both been heavily leaked over the last couple of months but little else has been revealed regarding the Pixel Watch since the tweet from Blass. Despite Blass typically getting things right, it seems he might actually be wrong on this occasion, at least in terms of timing.
A Pixel Watch, or Pixel Time as it has also been called, is on the cards but based on an interview between Miles Barr, Google's director of engineering for Wear OS and Tom's Guide, Google is focusing on its partners for now. Barr said: "To think of a one-size-fits-all watch, I don’t think we're there yet. Our focus is on our partners for now."
It was also confirmed by a separate Google spokesperson that the company would not be announcing its own smartwatch this year. That doesn't mean there isn't one in the works though, or that next year is off the cards.
Google Pixel Watch design and display
- Solid materials likely
- Premium design probable
- Round face likely
Google's Pixel smartphones have pretty much leaked in their entirety but we have seen nothing in terms of design leaks for the Pixel smartwatch. This suggests that Google has yet to come up with a definitive design as yet.
The company's Wear OS platform is present on numerous devices at a range of price points so it would be understandable that Google may not have quite decided where to place a Pixel-branded watch in the market. Does it compete with the likes of Tag Heuer or does it take on the Fossil Group and all its well-established fashion brands?
Given the Pixel smartphones feature an excellent build quality, we'd expect the Pixel Watch to offer the same level of craftsmanship. For now, we don't know whether Google is considering round face, like the Samsung Galaxy Watch, even though this is probable, rectangular face like the Apple Watch or a completely different form for the Pixel Watch, but we would expect solid materials and a good design.
It is likely the Pixel Watch will be more premium than the LG Watch Style and LG Watch Sport, both of which were closely backed by Google as Android Wear 2.0 ambassador smartwatches when they launched in 2017 with their rotational dials.
It has been claimed by WinFuture that there are three models of Pixel Watch in the works, but these might just be prototypes with a plan to only release one. If Google is hoping to establish a "one-size-fits-all watch", it will need to get the design absolutely perfect and even then, one size is very unlikely to fit all in terms of smartwatches so several attempts will no doubt be necessary to even come close.
Google Pixel Watch specs and features
- Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 3100 likely
- At least 4GB RAM, 512MB storage
- HR monitor, GPS, waterproofing probable
- 4G LTE possible
Google and Qualcomm have a solid relationship. The Pixel smartphones feature Qualcomm Snapdragon processors under their hoods and many of the Wear OS third party partners also opt for Qualcomm's Snapdragon Wear processor.
With Qualcomm having recently launched the Wear 3100 processor, we'd expect the Pixel smartwatch, whenever it appears, to have this chip on board.
The Snapdragon Wear 3100 promises battery life improvements, especially in sports modes over the previous Wear 2100 chip. It has been designed from the ground up and it is optimised for low power, helping smartwatches that use it with audio, display and sensors.
Other hardware features are difficult to predict but it is likely we would see at least 4GB of RAM and 512MB storage, as well as around a 300mAh battery capacity on board, as is generally the norm across smartwatches currently. Hopefully the Pixel Watch might even improve on these specs, as well as offer 4G LTE like several other smartwatches already do.
Given Google's recent overhaul of Google Fit, we'd also expect the Pixel Watch to focus heavily on sports and fitness tracking. It is therefore likely that a heart rate monitor will be present, as well as waterproofing and maybe even built-in GPS and a few other extras.
Google Pixel Watch software
- Focus on Google Assistant and AI
We might not know much about the Google Pixel Watch at the moment, but we do know that whenever it arrives, if it arrives, it will run on Wear OS. This is pretty much as certain as the Pope being Catholic.
The Pixel Watch will therefore offer everything Wear OS does, including Google Assistant with Smart Suggestions, Google Fit and Google Pay. You can read all about Wear OS and what the software offers in our separate feature.
The Pixel Watch will likely place a special focus on Google Assistant and AI learning when it finally arrives too as this is what Miles Barr told Tom's Guide his ideal Pixel Watch would offer in his interview.
Google Pixel Watch price
So how much might the Google Pixel Watch cost? This ultimately depends on where Google places it in the market of WearOS devices.
It's very unlikely to be as expensive as the Tag Heuer or Louis Vuitton smartwatches, but we don't foresee it being the cheapest WearOS smartwatch available either. We'd expect it to sit somewhere around the £300-£350 mark but we are just guessing for now.
We will update this feature as soon as we hear anymore regarding the Pixel-branded smartwatch.