Google Pixel Watch lead

Google Pixel Watch 2: Features we want to see

Android fans had a lot to like about the Google Pixel Watch when it landed in October: a simple design, great integration with Fitbit, and the best version of the company’s Wear OS software yet. Google’s first wearable effort wasn’t perfect. Battery life was a real downer, and the “one-size-fits-all” approach was out of sync with the rest of the smartwatch world. This leaves a lot of areas for the Pixel Watch 2 to improve.

Since the OG Pixel Watch just landed, there’s going to be a long wait before a successor emerges — but that doesn’t mean we can’t look ahead, or come up with a laundry list of things we’d love to see cut by the time it does.

Possible Google Pixel Watch 2 release date

Google Pixel Watch verdict

Let’s face it, the Pixel Watch 2 won’t land until 2023 at the earliest. The first-gen Pixel Watch is still new, having only been around for a month or two at the time of writing, and Google has yet to confirm whether it will see annual updates like the Pixel smartphones.

Since both Apple and Samsung work on new models every twelve months, it’s a safe bet that Google will follow suit. This means that we can expect the Pixel Watch 2 to arrive in October 2023, barring any delays.

Pricing is more than unknown. You can pick up the Pixel Watch for £339, but while Google has managed to match the prices of the Pixel 7 and Pixel 7 Pro to their predecessors, there’s currently no indication that it will try to do the same for its wearables lineup. The rising general cost of living over the next 12 months may make that impossible, however. Estimating the cost of a larger model, if the company showed one, would also be a complete shot in the dark.

Once the first leaks and rumors start to come out, we’ll be sure to bring them to you here.

Google Pixel Watch 2 Feature Wish List

Google Pixel Watch collection

We awarded the Pixel Watch four stars in our review, praising its looks and fitness-tracking capabilities but noting that it didn’t live up to more established competitors. Wonder what could bump up to a full five stars? Some of the following items that appear for the sequel should do the trick….

Two screen size options

With a 41mm screen, there’s no doubt the Pixel Watch could look a little nicer on a larger wrist. It’s perfect for the smallest, so we don’t want to see Google simply increase the size for 2023 and call it a day. Better to follow Apple and Samsung in offering a second, larger screen option. This will allow customers to decide what works best for them, and should make it possible to squeeze a larger battery inside (more on that below).

If that means having to shell out a bit more, then so be it — the 45mm Apple Watch Series 8 carries a £40 premium over the 41mm version, but it doesn’t seem to have hurt Apple’s sales numbers.

(much) better battery life

Longevity is easily the Pixel Watch’s biggest weakness. It can barely last a full day on a single charge once you’ve done some exercise tracking, and using the always-on display can sometimes mean having to recharge twice to get you through the night. The Apple Watch performs much better, and the Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 can now manage two to three days without much trouble. Google needs to do better for the next generation version.

Whether that’s by using a more efficient processor (the one it’s using now is several years behind the latest Qualcomm 4100, which itself is due for an upgrade over the next year or so), or by increasing battery size doesn’t really matter to customers. As long as they aren’t hooked into a plug socket at least once a day, it counts as a win.

Push back the edges

We’re fans of round smartwatches, and the Pixel Watch’s glass-dome face is a real peach — until you find out how thick its bezel is. The WearOS interface’s black ring is usually masked with mostly black backgrounds, and the OLED screen is a perfect color match — but it’s still cheaper than the premium gadget’s look. Thin bezels are a must if Google wants to take on Apple and Samsung in the design stakes.