Priced at $349.99, the Google Pixel Watch 2 is a compelling smartwatch with notable improvements and an array of enhanced features.
In this review, we'll delve into what makes this wearable a considerable upgrade over its predecessor.
Impressive Battery Life: The Pixel Watch 2 now boasts an "all-day" battery life, and it actually lives up to this claim. You can expect it to last an entire day with typical usage.
Faster Charging: With improved power efficiency, the watch charges more rapidly, ensuring you spend less time tethered to the charger.
Seamless Fitbit Integration: The integration of Fitbit features is more cohesive, providing a smoother experience for fitness enthusiasts.
Enhanced Health and Stress Tracking: The watch's improved sensors contribute to better health and stress tracking, giving you valuable insights into your well-being.
Safety Check: This emergency feature is a valuable addition, providing an extra layer of safety.
Single Size Option: The Pixel Watch 2 still comes in only one size, limiting choice.
Material Choice: The use of recycled aluminum, while eco-friendly, might not be everyone's preference, especially when compared to stainless steel.
Safety Signal Requirements: Access to the Safety Signal feature necessitates having an LTE model and Fitbit Premium.
Screen Fragility: While improvements have been made, the Pixel Watch 2's screen can still be delicate.
Battery Life: A Significant Improvement
One of the primary criticisms of its predecessor was the battery life. Users often found themselves charging it twice a day, making it less than convenient.
However, the Pixel Watch 2 addresses this issue admirably. Thanks to a more powerful and efficient processor and Wear OS 4's focus on better battery life, the watch now offers impressive performance.
Even with the always-on display enabled and active use of various features, it consistently provides 24 hours on a single charge. For those who want even more efficiency, activating Bedtime mode can substantially reduce overnight battery drain.
Fitbit Integration and Health Tracking
The Pixel Watch 2 resolves the Fitbit integration woes of the previous year, resulting in a more straightforward product lineup.
The watch offers automatic workout tracking for seven activity types, which is a significant improvement from last year.
The new multipath sensor enhances heart rate tracking during vigorous activities, and the watch now supports features like Sleep Profiles, high and low heart rate alerts, irregular heart rhythm alerts, and nightly SpO2.
The Pixel Watch 2 includes several features that enhance fitness tracking. It offers personalized heart rate zones, making it easier to monitor your training.
While there are some issues with GPS accuracy, the heart rate tracking appears reliable. As for GPS, it may be slower to acquire a signal and might slightly overreport distances, but these are minor drawbacks.
The watch's fitness features make it a suitable choice for casual to intermediate activity tracking.
Safety Check and Safety Signal
The Safety Check feature is a standout addition to the Pixel Watch 2. It allows you to set proactive timers to share your location with emergency contacts and services if necessary.
Safety Signal, another feature, provides access to cellular emergency SOS functions without an LTE plan.
While these features are valuable, they are tied to specific models and require a Fitbit Premium subscription.
Stress tracking on the Pixel Watch 2 has been improved with continuous electrodermal activity (cEDA) and skin temperature sensors.
When signs of physical stress are detected, the watch can prompt you to log your emotions, perform breathing exercises, or go for a walk.
This feature enhances the watch's ability to help you manage your well-being.
The watch includes new watch faces, Google services such as Gmail and Calendar, and Wear OS 4's cloud backups.
The Material You design language, while mostly effective, might have room for improvement. Some aspects of the design, such as the display's brightness in direct sunlight, could be enhanced.
A Step in the Right Direction
The Pixel Watch 2, although visually similar to its predecessor, is notably improved in several essential aspects. It significantly enhances battery life and provides better fitness tracking, making it a noteworthy choice in the Android smartwatch category.
The watch does still have some quirks, but Google's ongoing commitment to improvement and innovation suggests that this smartwatch may be on the path to becoming the best in its class.
While there are still areas where Google can refine the Pixel Watch experience, this product showcases the company's potential to excel in the smartwatch space. However, Google must remain diligent in its approach, especially in its ongoing Fitbit integration.
Despite the minor issues, the Pixel Watch 2 brings hope for a brighter future in Android smartwatches.
In conclusion, the Pixel Watch 2's significant improvements make it an appealing option for those seeking an Android smartwatch with enhanced features and better battery life.