After a massive leak regarding the Pixel Watch this summer, it seemed that all of the sources dried up. And it was no surprise when the wearable failed to appear alongside the Pixel 6 and Pixel 6 Pro in October.
However, it appears the Pixel Watch merely managed to stay under wraps since then (a minor miracle for Google hardware), with a new report from Insider offering confirmation that the project is real and still underway with a scheduled 2022 launch (via The Verge).
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The report adds a few interesting new tidbits to our existing picture of the Pixel Watch and notably doesn't conflict with the previous report other than the revised release date. According to the new report, the timeline for the launch is still up in the air, but the earliest it could arrive is spring (presumably at Google I/O 2022 in May).
"Pixel Watch" won't necessarily be the final name, but it is one of the internal names used for the product along with simply "Android Watch." Unsurprisingly, Google will go with a round design, helping to differentiate from Apple Watch and it "has no physical bezel." That agrees with the previous Pixel Watch leak and was one of the details that had some questioning those earlier renders.
As with most wearables these days, the Pixel Watch will reportedly feature swappable proprietary bands. While a document in the leak made reference to concerns that insufficient sizing would exclude some users, it's unclear whether there will be multiple Pixel Watch hardware sizes as with the Apple Watch or Galaxy Watch 4.
There will naturally be a heart-rate monitor and general fitness tracking, but according to the report, the Wear OS device will also feature Fitbit integration. It's unclear what that will look like as Fitbit has remained a distinct ecosystem under Google's ownership. If Google is going to tie into the social aspect of Fitbit or adopt some of the health and nutrition components of Fitbit that could be intriguing.
Unfortunately, it wasn't all good news for the Pixel Watch. Sources claimed that the Pixel Watch battery life is limited to a single day, similar to the Apple Watch, and that charging is frustratingly slow. Speaking of Apple Watch, the Pixel Watch will be closer in pricing to that device than a Fitbit. That still leaves a reasonable amount of wiggle room, but $300 or above seems probable.
Wear OS is already undergoing a resurgence thanks to Google's partnership with Samsung. However, Pixel Watch and other Wear OS devices could take things to the next level in 2022 and actually challenge the dominance of Apple Watch.