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We might hear about Google’s Pixel Watch and more this week


Google I/O 2022 may share the same goal as last year’s conference: wearable technology. Multiple rumours, reports and leaks indicate that the search giant’s first smartwatch – likely to be called the Pixel Watch — could finally debut this week. (Here is how to watch google I/O live.) The company is also expected to share updates to its Wear OS smartwatch software, which it overhauled last year in conjunction with Samsung.

Only Google knows what awaits annual conference. But the company typically uses its keynote as an opportunity to preview developments for its major products. This usually includes platforms such as android and Wear OS, and applications such as Google PhotosMaps and Research.


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What to expect at Google I/O 2022


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In addition to announcing updates, Google’s keynote usually says a lot about its overall approach and vision. We’ll likely get a glimpse of how Google plans to differentiate its devices and services from rivals, like Apple, Samsung, and Amazon. If the rumors turn out to be true, the company’s stance on smartwatches could be a big part of this year’s event. A Pixel Watch announcement would be more than a new product; that would tell us what Google considers the ideal Android smartwatch experience.

Read more: Google’s rumored smartwatch is set to take a page from its Pixel phones

Here’s what we expect from Google when it comes to smartwatches and wearable tech at I/O 2022.

We might hear about Google’s Pixel Watch and more this week


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The Pixel Watch could be coming

There’s a chance that Google could finally introduce its first consumer smartwatch. Google hasn’t said a word about plans to release a watch, but that may be the company’s worst-kept secret. Reports from Insider, YouTube tech personality Jon Prosser, and recent leaks claiming to show photos of the watch indicate that a Pixel Watch is indeed coming.

Google I/O seems like the perfect time to make such an announcement. However, we may not get the full story at I/O. prosser suggests Google will tease the watch during its conference rather than revealing all the details. Instead, the company could launch the Pixel Watch in the fall alongside the Pixel 7, Prosser says.

Google did a similar move. with the Pixel 6 last year. He announced some information about the phone in August, but saved the full reveal for his October release.

So what do we know about the Pixel Watch so far? Everything but also nothing, it seems. Reddit user “tagtech414” has leaked photos to Android Central and Reddit that claim to show the watch itself. Both sets of images are consistent with previous rumors and renders indicating that it will have a round design.

We also expect Fitbit to be integrated into the Pixel Watch in some way, although we won’t know for sure until the watch is official. Fitbit also previously said it was working on its own high-end Wear OS watch, but it’s unclear whether that Fitbit watch and the Pixel Watch would be the same device. The price is another mystery.

Read more: Should you upgrade to the Pixel 6? We compare it to 3 older Pixel phones

Port OS updates

Google will also likely have general updates to share on Wear OS, the software it provides for smartwatches made by Fossil, Samsung and other companies. Google announced a new version of Wear OS during I/O last year that brings better integration with the company’s apps and smoother performance, among other improvements. It developed the software in conjunction with Samsung, the world’s second-largest smartwatch maker by market share, according to Counterpoint Research.

But so far we have only seen the software on Samsung’s Galaxy Watch 4, which still relies heavily on Samsung’s own apps and services. It doesn’t look much like Google, so it’s hard to tell how much of a difference the refreshed software makes. Google Assistant is coming to the Watch 4 in a future updatealthough no definitive date has been announced.

Wear OS should also arrive on Fossil wearables and Mobvoi’s TicWatch devices in mid-2022. Fossil tweeted in march that the update would come to eligible watches sometime in the middle to second half of the year, but we haven’t heard more details yet. A Google spokesperson said the company is working to bring Wear OS 3 to more devices this year, but has nothing to share on its partners’ roadmap at this time. Now that we are approaching the middle of the year, we hope to hear more about timing and availability from I/O.

Google may announce the Wear OS Fitbit watch we’ve heard about, but Fitbit product announcements usually happen closer to the fall. Google could also unveil new features and other improvements to Wear OS now that it’s been almost a full year since the reveal of the software.

Read more: I want more of the Apple Watch in 2022

Google’s plans for Fitbit

Perhaps the biggest question is whether we’ll learn more about how Google intends to integrate Fitbit into its Wear OS platform. Fitbit plans to release a version of its app for Wear OS, as my colleague Scott Stein reported last year, although the timing is unclear. A Google spokesperson said it’s working to bring the Fitbit experience to Wear OS this year and will share more details closer to launch.

It’s been over a year since Completion of Fitbit acquisition by Google; it’s possible we can find out more about how the two brands plan to work together. There is already evidence of this in some Google products. For example, the second-generation Nest Hub’s sleep-tracking features will require a Fitbit Premium subscription in 2023. But Google and Fitbit still offer two separate experiences, so it’ll be interesting to see how they end up coming together.

Google has made a name for itself in smartphones and laptops through its Pixel brand, but it hasn’t yet branched out into smartwatches. While advertising remains most of Google’s business, the company has been making efforts to compete with Apple and Samsung as the leading maker of consumer tech gadgets in recent years. He even opened his first physical retail store Last year.

The Fitbit acquisition was a big step in expanding Google’s footprint in the wearables market, but Apple and Samsung still lead the industry. Apple accounted for 30.1% of the global smartwatch market in 2021, according to Counterpoint Research, while Samsung came in second with 10.2%. Depending on what Google announces to I/O, we might learn more about how the company hopes to change that.

We might hear about Google’s Pixel Watch and more this week


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