Google released its first smartwatch last year, which was promising but had some flaws. So it’s high time for the successor – the Google Pixel Watch 2 is here. It looks pretty similar to the first Pixel Watch, but that also applies to the new Pixel 8 and Pixel 8 Pro. But Google’s Wear OS 4 brings major visual improvements.
The original Pixel Watch came onto the market with an Exynos 9110 chipset that was already outdated at launch. The 10nm chip ran smoothly, but not exactly efficiently. The second generation Google smartwatch instead has the current Snapdragon W5+ Gen 1 chipset under the hood, which is manufactured in an energy-saving 4nm. There is also 2 GB of RAM.
The new watch’s battery is almost identical at 306 mAh versus 294 mAh. Google promises 24 hours of battery life with Always-On Display enabled. After all, 30 minutes on the charger is enough for a runtime of 12 hours. In addition, there is only one size of 41 mm. The Google Pixel Watch 2 is equipped with more stable glass and 100% recycled aluminum. The 1.2-inch OLED display has a resolution of 384 x 384 pixels compared to 450 x 450 on its predecessor. At least the battery life should benefit from this.
Like its predecessor, the Google Pixel Watch 2 is equipped with optical heart rate and blood oxygen sensors. However, the new multi-path sensor is 40% more accurate during intense physical activity than the old single-path sensor because it measures heart rate at multiple points on the wrist. The watch also tracks stress levels using the sensor for continuous electrodermal activity. Sleep quality now also includes skin temperature measurements, although unlike the Apple Watches and Samsung Galaxy Watches, Google hasn’t jumped on the ECG bandwagon yet.
The watch comes with 6 months of Fitbit Premium, which uses AI to analyze current performance and explain training evolution. All data recorded by the watch is used. Therefore, the Google Pixel Watch 2 can associate poor running results with restless sleep, for example. The watch also features a new coaching function that helps keep your pace and heart rate within the target zone.
The watch is again 50 meter/IP68 certified, making it dustproof and suitable for swimming in pools. New this year is UWB, which is intended to allow the watch to track other UWB-enabled devices and the watch itself more accurately than with Bluetooth, as well as having a directional indicator. Google hasn’t introduced its own tracking tags yet, but is building an Android-native Find My Device network.
There’s also a new emergency sharing feature that sends your location to a range of trusted contacts. This also works automatically – with Safety Check you can set a timer after which the emergency release is activated.
As usual there are several bracelets. The Perforated Active Sport Band is durable and breathable and costs $50. Then there’s the Woven Band for $60 and a stainless steel bracelet. The strap mechanism is the same as last year, allowing you to reuse straps from the original Pixel Watch. Google also released a new charger for $30.
The Google Pixel Watch 2 is available now as a Bluetooth model starting at $350. The LTE model costs $400.