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Over the years, Google has made several attempts to release a wearable that can compete with the Apple Watch. New Pixel Watch rumors today provide additional details.  

According to Business Insider and since corroborated by The Verge, this upcoming wearable is said to be “round and has no physical bezel,” while making use of proprietary watchbands. It will require daily charging, which early feedback has said is slow. 

In terms of sensors, there’s a heart-rate monitor and step counting, but the interesting tidbit from today’s report is how Google hopes to debut Fitbit integration on Wear OS — codenamed “Nightlight” — with this watch. The two companies previously announced that it was in the works at I/O 2021 in May.

Final branding for the device is not yet known:

The watch has sometimes been referred to internally as the “Pixel watch” or “Android watch,” but executives have used a variety of names to refer to the project and it is unclear what branding Google will land on if and when it launches the device. The existence of a smartwatch codenamed “Rohan” was previously reported by YouTuber Jon Prosser.

In terms of pricing, The Verge reports that the “device is expected to cost more than a Fitbit and compete more directly with the Apple Watch.” The Fitbit Sense at $299 is currently the company’s most expensive wearable.

In terms of launch, the device is currently undergoing “dogfood” testing where Googlers outside of the smartwatch team are able to test and provide feedback. A launch is planned for next year, while it could occur as early as spring “if the latest testing round is a success.”

This renewed attempt at a first-party watch comes as Wear OS 3 launched earlier this year on the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4. The wearable operating system is now based on Android 11, while Google redesigned several of its apps (Gboard, YouTube Music, Messages, and Maps) and is encouraging third-party development (e.g. offline Spotify).

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About the Author

Abner Li

Editor-in-chief. Interested in the minutiae of Google and Alphabet. Tips/talk: abner@9to5g.com