Pixel Watch: Everything we know about the potential Google smartwatch

Rumors suggest a Wear OS hero smartwatch is coming soon
Pixel Watch: What we know so far
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The Google Pixel Watch, Big Foot, the Loch Ness Monster – the great mythic beasts of our age. And in the contest of which is more likely to be revealed in 2022, the Google Pixel Watch is still only marginally ahead.

We've been speculating on the existence of a Google smartwatch since 2014, when Google released Android Wear – its smartwatch OS.

Google opted to enlist hardware partners like Sony, LG, Fossil, Louis Vuitton and Mont Blanc to try to push its smartwatch ambitions forward – just as it did with the Android smartphone OS. But unlike smartphones, it hasn't made it's own smartwatch. But all that could be about to change.

There's talk once again that a Pixel Watch is on the cards. With Google partnering up with Samsung for a fresh take on Wear and its acquisition of Fitbit, it seems like it could finally be the right time for a Pixel Watch.

So what do we think know about the much talked about smartwatch? Here's the latest.

Google Pixel Watch: Latest details on design and name

Pixel Watch investigation: Everything we know about the potential Google smartwatch

All the talk is about a 2022 release for the Pixel Watch - so let's go through the main rumors:

The first arrived in April 2021 when tech leaker Jon Prosser threw up a YouTube video that revealed Google's smartwatch project supposedly carried the codename 'Rohan' – and that it would officially be called the Google Pixel Watch.

While Prosser wasn't able to show off pictures then, he did pull together some shots from a render artist to recreate what the Google smartwatch looks like (images above and below).

Prosser revealed that it would feature a round case with a bezel-less screen and will come with 20 strap options.

Pixel Watch rumors piece draft

Then in December, after the folks at Business Insider shared details about the project. The report stated that the smartwatch is being built by Google's Pixel hardware group, which is separate from Fitbit, and it's not clear if it will definitely carry the Pixel Watch name.

However, following the BI report, Prosser doubled-down on his claims about the design, the Pixel Watch name, and a Q2 2022 release date.

Prosser shared what he claimed were some grainy shots of marketing material showing off the Pixel Watch. The images directly supported his claims of the round, bezel-less design we can expect from the Google smartwatch.

Google Pixel Watch: 26 May release date?

That is the big question. When will the Pixel Watch launch?

In Jon Prosser's first big leak, he suggested it was heading for an October 2021 release, though stressed Google could push that date. Clearly that October launch has been missed.

The Business Insider intel suggested the Pixel Watch is on track to launch in Q2 2022, which would mean at some point between April and June.

And now Jon Prosser has claimed that the Pixel Watch will launch on 26 May 2022. Given the accuracy of his previous claims, we're inclined to believe this, with the usual salt-pinching caveats.

Google Pixel Watch: Features, Fitbit and Wear OS

Pixel Watch rumors piece draft

What will the Pixel Watch be able to do? That is a very important question.We think it's fair to assume that when or if it lands, it will be packing Google's Wear OS and it's likely to be the latest version known as Wear OS 3.0.

Essential reading: Google Wear OS 3.0 features and compatible watches

Wear OS 3 has been built by Google and Samsung combining elements of Google's Wear with Samsung's Tizen platform. Currently, the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 is the only smartwatch on the market that's running it as the likes of the TicWatch Pro 3 and Fossil Gen 6 are scheduled to receive the update at some point in 2022.

That would likely mean that features already present on Wear will be available. Think notifications, Google Pay, a music player, customisable watch faces. You could potentially throw LTE connectivity in the mix there too. Developers like Strava and Google have built Wear OS 3 apps to take advantage of the new software too.

Compatibility will be interesting here too. Google's Wear OS watches have largely worked with Android and iPhones. The arrival of the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 though saw Samsung ditch iOS support for Android compatibility only.

Pixel Watch rumors piece draft

That same Business Insider report that revealed the watch was in works suggests the watch will offer basic fitness tracking features, including step counting. There will also be a heart rate monitor on board too.

This also brings us nicely to Fitbit, which Google acquired in January 2021. With the announcement of Wear OS 3, there was talk of how Fitbit's fitness tracking would be integrated into the smartwatch platform.

Business Insider also claims Google is reportedly working on debuting a Fitbit integration into Wear OS (codenamed “Nightlight”) when the watch launches.

Google Pixel Watch: Cancellations and false starts

Pixel Watch investigation: Everything we know, and what it needs to succeed

As we mentioned earlier, we've been here before with talk of a Google Pixel Watch.

Back in 2018, reliable leaker Evan Blass first reported that Google would be launching a Pixel-branded smartwatch alongside the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL. Then WinFuture followed up with its own report saying it wouldn't just be one Pixel Watch, but three. Those three smartwatches were apparently codenamed Ling, Triton and Sardine.

Then, in 2019 there were reports that the entire Pixel Watch project was cancelled at late notice in 2016. The report by Business Insider stated that the Pixel Watch was all set for a launch alongside the first Pixel phone back in 2016, but was pulled at the last minute as it didn't live up the standard Google was trying to set. Those watches, made with LG, were actually released as the LG Watch Sport and LG Watch Style in 2017.

Pixel Watch rumors piece draft

In that same year, Google paid $40 million to Fossil for some secretive smartwatch technology. We got the scoop on exactly what Google bought from Fossil, and revealed that Google was working on some interesting smartwatch tech.

The tech Google acquired was a hybrid smartwatch movement built by Fossil, codenamed "Diana", a portmanteau of "digital" and "analogue" – this resulted in the Fossil Hybrid HR.

It also took 20 engineers from Fossil, grabbing the rights to produce various different versions of the Diana line, apparently, including some with and without screens.