Google is prepping to launch its answer to the Apple Watch. We are expecting the see the company’s first Pixel-branded watch before the end of this year.
Essential reading: Top fitness trackers and health gadgets
There have been a number of leaks that point to this. The first comes from a person with an excellent track record when it comes to predicting these sorts of things. Venture Beat tech journalist Evan Blass released the following tweet a couple of months ago.
Blass also mentions the Pixel Buds, which will get an upgrade along with third-generation Pixel phones. Unfortunately, he doesn’t provide any further details on the upcoming smartwatch.
We had some hopes Google would mention the watch at its three day annual I/O conference back in May. The company used the opportunity to push out some key updates for developers such as an enhanced battery saving mode. No mention, however, was made of a Pixel watch.
But subsequent reports including one from German tech site Winfuture.de provide some more clues. According to these rumours:
- This will be the first flagship watch entirely designed and manufactured by Google. The company is yet to launch a smartwatch of its own. Earlier, it chose to partner with LG on its Watch Style and Watch Sport.
- The company is not working on one, but on three Wear OS devices. They are codenamed Ling, Triton and Sardine. Rather than three separate products, its more likely these are variants of the same watch that differ in terms of size and features.
- The watches will have GPS, LTE and VoLTE support.
- Some of the variants will have a heart rate sensor and the ability to track stress along with other health features. Expect more fitness coaching and guidance than we’re used to seeing. We’ve recently learned that Google is working on wearable health and fitness AI assistant to help whip you into shape. It will disect your daily habits and suggest ways to lead a healthier lifestyle. This will tie in nicely with the Pixel Watch.
- All variants with sport Qualcomm’s new chip the Snapdragon Wear 3100 which uses an ARM Cortex A7 architecture and Adreno 304 GPU. This is the first time since 2016 that Qualcomm has upgraded its processor. The company has already confirmed it will be out this fall. A press conference is scheduled for September 10th when we’ll learn more.
- Some sources suggest the watches could be used to replace passwords acting like a physical security key. The average person is said to have 19 passwords, and lets face it – lots of these are unsafe, weak repetitive choices. Its only a matter of time before passwords are replaced by key fobs, fingerprints, voice and facial recognition. No one will miss them!
- Expect an always on Google assistant as a key feature of the new timepiece.
- Looks are just as important as functionality. Unfortunately many Wear OS watches are bulky animals, designed in a way to accommodate large batteries. A stylish design of Google Pixel Watch should be on the cards.
- Wear OS watches are not well known for stonking battery life. However the new Qualcomm chip is said to bring with it a significant boost in battery performance. By extension, the Pixel watch should benefit from this. Battery life will of course depend on other specs. The device is likely to have added power modes, too.
- Google may have accidentally leaked the release date of the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL. Both could be out on October 4th, which might also be the date we’ll see the first Pixel-branded watch. A pre-holiday sales launch would make perfect sense.
We should have a busy few months ahead of us. The Samsung Galaxy Watch has already been announced, with new devices expected from LG. IFA is around the corner, too, and we’re sure there will be some goodies in store from Fitbit, Garmin, Fossil and others. And lets not forget Apple’s answer to all of this that will come in the form of its Series 4 Watch.
We’ll update this article as and when more leaks emerge.
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