As promised at launch and after a false start, Google today is rolling out Fall Detection for the Pixel Watch.

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Google says the Pixel Watch can distinguish between a hard fall and exercise, including vigorous physical activity (burpees were given as an example). Citing extensive testing, the wearable can ignore quickly recovering from a small stumble.

We also tested this feature against high-energy activities that involved impact, sudden drop or excessive arm movements — think activities like burpees, jumping or swimming — to avoid those types of activities from triggering a false notification.

This capability is triggered when a hard fall followed by about 30 seconds of no movement occurs. It leverages motion sensors and on-device machine learning. Your Pixel Watch will show the “Fall detected” screen with a red countdown ring that offers two buttons: “I’m OK” to dismiss and “I fell & need help.” 

The motion sensors and algorithms can monitor for a sudden impact and your body’s responses and instinctive reactions to falling. We trained this process using a broad variety of human and simulated fall data and other motion patterns to accurately detect real falls and minimize potential false alarms.

Your watch will also vibrate and sound an alarm that gets louder in the final few seconds. If there’s no response after a minute, the Pixel Watch will automatically call emergency services and provide an automated message noting the fall and your current location. You also have the ability to talk with the emergency operator. 

Like with Emergency SOS, take note of your Pixel Watch variant:

  • Google Pixel Watch Wi-Fi needs to be in range of your phone and connected with Bluetooth to call emergency services. You will not be able to make a call if your watch is not connected to a phone.
  • Google Pixel Watch LTE needs an active LTE connection on your watch to call emergency services without your phone nearby.

Starting today, the Pixel Watch companion app will show a promotional card in the “Updates” feed (top-right corner) to enable Fall Detection. You’ll also see a prompt in the Personal Safety app, and it’s available in the US, CA, UK, IE, FR, JP, AU, and TW. Your Pixel Watch needs to be on version RWD9.220429.073 (from January) or newer.

When you set up fall detection, you’ll also have the option to toggle on a setting called “Help improve fall detection,” where we may collect the motion sensor data of events detected as falls to make future improvements for this feature.

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