Google’s first OS Wear watch has been out for some time and if you have not seen it yet, the one thing that will likely capture your attention is the design. Google went a mile to ensure the watch is stylish and built with quality with a few seamless operations but the watch is lacking on some. The watch was unveiled along with Google’s latest Pixel series phones Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro and costs $350.
Considering it’s a first from Google, it is not the worst watch they could have made and they are some things that do stand out about the watch.
The Best of the Pixel Watch
The Pixel Watch Design
The round and pebble look with curved edges give it a distinctive look with a bright, colourful display that you will like looking at. It comes with a durable crown (shell) built with recycled stainless steel which gives a nice look and feels and an active watchband giving it a premium feel fit for wear. The overall design makes it comfortable to wear.
If you’re scrolling up or down when using the watch you get tiny vibrations that are not going to disturb you or alarm you and you also get a buzz for every notification that is small enough to hear but not too loud to alarm you as well. The crown is precise and makes scrolling easy when using the Pixel Watch. The haptic feedback on the Pixel Watch may be the best running on any Wear OS.
The Operating System
The Pixel Watch is really quick when it comes to navigating the different features on the watch. You get a fluid operation when multitasking, scrolling down through menus, activating Google assistant and moving between applications. Google’s new watch is supported by the latest version of Wear OS. Overall, operating the watch is seamless, has a good user experience and the features are easy to find and well set it won’t take you a long time to get used to using the Pixel Watch.
For customisation purposes, the watch offers a range of third-party watch faces that you can find on Google Play Store. The out-of-the-box watch faces come in different styles that can be customised to personal likes on the watch or using the Pixel Watch phone app and they are nice and helpful in case you are not ready to purchase extra watch faces.
The Pixel Watch is the first Android-powered smartwatch to have basic health and fitness tracking under Fitbit, it has ESG functionality and allows you to remotely launch and control cameras on your smartphone. It also has Google apps and smart home control. Before it came out Google had promised that the Pixel Watch would be able to “seamlessly connect with other services offered by Google” and it seems Google has lived up to that promise.
The Worst of the Pixel Watch
The design has been highly criticised by some since the official teasers that came from Google showed the circular design of the watch and while having Fitbit on the Watch is a plus for Google, critics feel it’s a bit lukewarm considering other brands have other better health features.
Google claimed that the Pixel Watch can last up to 24 hours but that is not enough, not many of us want to charge our watch daily. The 24-hour battery life claim is close to what people have noted but like with other energy-consuming devices, the battery life heavily depends on how much you use the Watch after a single charge. You can get a day or a day and a half or less depending on how you have used the watch throughout the day. So while it’s not the most impressive it’s controllable.
The size fits all saying is sometimes a cliché and you surely will agree with me if you have a bigger wrist than average. The Pixel watch comes in one small size and may be okay for some but 41mm is not everyone’s choice so Google should have thought of a larger version for those who want a larger watch on their wrist.
The watch has a limited selection of accessories from wristbands and the charging pad which may be because of the way the watch was designed. No third-party watch bands are available for the Pixel Watch and the ones that Google is offering are way expensive. To the charging side, you are also limited to only use the out of the box pad, other wireless charging systems even Pixel battery share won’t charge the watch and yes that also is because of the way it was designed.
The Fitbit feature is up and running but other features are still stuck behind Fitbit premium is available if you are looking for fitness challenges, guided workouts, daily readiness score and more data on sleep tracking and the premium subscription is available for free for 6 months within three months of buying the Pixel Watch.
It may look a bit affordable but when compared to other better options on the market it is a bit pricey. It still has a long way to catch up with other brands of OS Wear that have existed since 2014 and at the starting price of $350, it is not a bargain.
But Google has gotten so many things right with its first watch, with the design standing out despite the critics (not everyone likes a rectangular look though) and Fitbit integration. The watch comes with 32GB storage space and 2GB of Ram and weighs about 36g without the bands. The watch faces are exclusive and stylish a true Google design and the hardware is the best. This aside Google could have impressed with the battery life, other premium health features and the price.