After literally years of leaks and rumors the Google Pixel Watch is now official – though we don’t know everything about it yet.
Google teased the watch at Google IO 2022, confirming the name in the process, and showing off a design that we’ve already seen a number of times thanks to leaks.
But this official look is our clearest yet, showing off a circular screen, a body made of recycled stainless steel, a tactile crown, and customizable bands, which the company claims will seamlessly attach.
The Google Pixel Watch undeniably looks good then, but it’s what’s going on under the hood that might be of most interest – most notably this wearable’s Fitbit integrations.
It’s the first Wear OS device to pack Fitbit tech, and it sounds like this powers most of its health and fitness features, including heart rate and sleep tracking, active zone minutes, and the ability to track your progress against personal fitness goals. Google claims this Fitbit integration allows for industry-leading health and fitness features, but it remains to be seen whether that will pan out.
Of course, the Pixel Watch also runs Wear OS, and Google claims that the software is improved here and will offer more fluid interactions.
The company highlighted that you’ll be able to make contactless payments with the new Google Wallet app, access Google Assistant and Google Maps, get directions without your phone, and control your smart home via Google Home on the watch, so – for example – you can turn the lights on or adjust the thermostat from your wrist.
We’re sure there’s plenty more to the Pixel Watch too, and Google didn’t touch on features like the battery, the chipset, or the price. But that will all come later this year, as the wearable is being fully unveiled alongside the Google Pixel 7 (which was also teased). That will probably happen in October going by Google’s usual schedule.
Analysis: finally Wear OS has its Apple Watch competitor
Android Wear (the software that would become Wear OS) launched eight years ago, and we’ve been waiting all that time for Google to launch some hardware to go along with it, but now finally that’s happened – or at least it will do later this year.
The Pixel Watch then can be an official canvas for Wear OS, showing the software off as Google intended, rather than the company relying purely on other device makers to make the most of Wear OS.
It’s the Wear OS equivalent of the Apple Watch then, and with what looks to be a premium design plus Fitbit’s fitness smarts, it could give the Apple Watch 8 a real run for its money.