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Pixel Watch vs. Apple Watch Series 8

The Apple Watch Series 8 has a brand new rival: the Google Pixel Watch. Announced as a part of October’s Made by Google occasion, it brings Google’s streamlined design and software program chops to the now-familiar smartwatch. It is available in a smooth, round, stainless-steel casing; runs on Google’s personal Wear OS 3.5; affords health-and fitness-tracking software program in partnership with Fitbit; and supplies a useful Emergency SOS function.

At $350, it’s pricing places it in direct competitors with the Apple Watch Series 8, which begins from $399. However, whereas it has the Google identify behind it, simply how good is it as a smartwatch, and the way does it examine to Apple’s newest wearable? We discover out on this comparability take a look at, which appears on the specs, designs, shows, software program, and particular options of every system.


Apple Watch Series 8
Google Pixel Watch
Display measurement 41mm: 1.53 inches

45mm: 1.78 inches

1.2 inches
Body measurement 41mm


Resolution in pixels 41mm: 352 x 430

45mm: 396 x 484

450 x 450
Touchscreen 41mm: LTPO OLED Retina, Always-on show

45mm: LTPO OLED Retina, Always-on show


Always-on show

Storage 32GB 32GB
Wireless interface Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, NFC, LTE Bluetooth 5.0, Wi-Fi 802.11 b/g/n, NFC, LTE
Depth 0.41 inches / 10.5mm 0.42 inches / 10.7mm
Blood oxygen sensor
Yes Yes
Accelerometer Yes Yes
Gyroscope Yes Yes
Ambient mild sensor Yes Yes
Heart fee sensor Yes Yes
Barometer Yes Yes
GPS Yes Yes
Compass Yes Yes
Water/mud resistant IP6X IP68
Battery life Up to 18 hours (36 hours in Low Power mode) Up to 24 hours
Price From $399 From $350
Availability Apple Google
DT assessment 4.5 out of 5 stars Hands-on

Design and show

Google Pixel Watch with a recycled loop strap.
Andrew Martonik / Digital Trends

Google has given the Pixel Watch a characteristically minimal and clear design, with the system housed in an 80%-recycled stainless-steel circle body with a aspect button. It is available in three colours — Matte Black, Polished Silver, and Champagne Gold — every of which comes with its personal explicit strap design.

While you may argue that it doesn’t actually take any design dangers, its compact measurement and tidy sculpting assist to tell apart it from the established design supplied by the Apple Watch Series 8, which doesn’t actually depart from the squircle type of the Apple Watch 7. This means you get a selection of two sizes (41mm and 45mm, versus 41mm just for the Pixel Watch), a selection of various supplies (aluminum and chrome steel), and all kinds of bands. Again, nothing spectacular or out of the extraordinary, however this design has labored properly for Apple up till now, so it’s comprehensible that it isn’t departing from it simply but.

The Apple Watch Series 8 options an always-on LTPO Retina OLED show, with the 41mm model having a decision of 352 x 430 pixels, versus the 45mm mannequin, which affords 396 x 484 pixels. By distinction, the Pixel Watch homes a 1.2-inch AMOLED show, with a decision of 450 x 450 pixels. Both provide round 1,000 nits max brightness, but some could also be postpone by the truth that the Pixel Watch’s display is noticeably smaller than even that of the 41mm Apple Watch 8, which comes with 1.69-inch show. What this implies is that the Pixel has tangibly bigger bezels than Apple’s system, one thing which can detract from its attractiveness for some.

Still, the show itself affords an identical pixel-per-inch density to that of the Apple Watch’s show, and provided that it boasts a comparatively new design general, this balances out the massive bezels.

Winner: Tie

Performance, battery life, and charging

Google Pixel Watch with a recycled loop strap on its charger.
Andrew Martonik / Digital Trends

The Google Pixel Watch is powered by an Exynos 9110 chip, in addition to a Cortex M33 co-processor. The 9110 is constructed utilizing a 10nm manufacturing course of, which is worse compated to the 7nm course of used with Apple’s S8 chip (a smaller quantity means you possibly can pack extra transistors into the identical house). As such, it’s seemingly that the Apple Watch Series 8 will function slightly extra easily and faster than the Pixel Watch, with Apple claiming that it’s 20% sooner than the Apple Watch 7.

Moving to battery discuss, the Apple Watch Series 8 lasts round 18 hours on a single cost. This was confirmed by our assessment, which discovered the system ended most days with round 30% to 40% of its cost remaining, even when utilizing it persistently. As for the Pixel, Google guarantees that its 294 mAh battery will sometimes final round 24 hours (word: the Apple Watch 8 has a 282mAh battery). While we haven’t examined it sufficient to verify this, the smaller display measurement of the Pixel ought to certainly assist it final a full day for many customers.

In phrases of charging, Google claims you possibly can take the Pixel to 50% in half-hour and to 100% in 80. With the Apple Watch, our assessment discovered that it may well go from empty to 80% in 45 minutes, so it has a slight edge right here. Combined with a sooner processor, this provides it the win.

Winner: Apple Watch Series 8

Fitness and health-tracking options

Google Pixel Watch with a recycled loop strap.
Andrew Martonik / Digital Trends

In holding with its uncluttered design, the Google Pixel Watch affords the core vary of sensors you’d anticipate from a smartwatch in 2022 with out making an attempt to be as complete because the Apple Watch Series 8. Namely, it comes with a blood oxygen sensor, {an electrical} sensor, and an optical coronary heart fee sensor (along with very customary stuff resembling a compass, altimeter, and accelerometer). In tandem with a Fitbit Premium subscription, which is obtainable at no cost for six months, this allows you to monitor every thing from the standard of your sleep to your coronary heart fee.

This is nice, nevertheless it’s overshadowed considerably by the sheer wealth of choices offered by the Apple Watch Series 8. In distinction to its predecessor, it provides a brand new pores and skin temperature sensor designed to detect very delicate drops in physique temperature, in addition to a sensor beneath the show to trace temperate adjustments throughout your sleep, each of that are geared toward detecting diseases early and aiding with ovulation monitoring. On high of this, it retains the ECG, SpO2, coronary heart fee monitor, and different sensors from earlier generations, making it very highly effective as a health and health-tracking system.

Winner: Apple Watch Series 8

Software and updates

An Apple Watch Series 8 showing its always-on display.
Joe Maring/Digital Trends

As famous above, the Pixel Watch makes use of Wear OS 3.5 out of the field. This options such additions as a UI refresh for improved at-a-glance health data, a rejigged climate app, extra good system integration choices, in addition to extra exercises and customizability for third-party health apps. It all makes for a clear and user-friendly OS, which is kind of precisely the identical factor you possibly can say about watchOS 9, which the Apple Watch Series 8 makes use of. This brings in 4 new watch faces, in addition to a number of Workout app updates, improved sleep monitoring, atrial fibrillation (AFib) historical past, and a brand new Medications app.

In phrases of updates, it’s seemingly that the Apple Watch will likely be supported with core updates for longer. That mentioned, Google hasn’t but clarified for a way lengthy it’ll help the Pixel Watch, and provided that it has improved its smartphone updating recreation prior to now couple of years, we’re leaving this spherical a tie — for now.

Winner: Tie

Special options

Car crash detection on Apple Watch Series 8.

There’s not a lot in it in terms of particular options, with each boasting largely the identical perks. For occasion, every has an always-on show, Emergency SOS performance, fall detection, and the power to pay for stuff at shops (by way of Google Pay and Apple Pay, respectively).

That mentioned, every has a few options which are slightly distinctive. The Apple Watch, for instance, additionally consists of crash detection, which makes use of a mixture of the watch’s sensors and synthetic intelligence to detect automobile accidents and mechanically name 911 for assist whereas offering your location and alerting your emergency contacts (provided that you don’t reply to a notification inside 10 seconds). As for the Pixel Watch, it has been IP68 and 5ATM licensed, whereas the Apple Watch has solely IP6X certification, though Apple does affirm that it’s additionally water resistant as much as 50 meters, just like the Pixel.

Winner: Tie

Price and availability

Google Pixel Watch with grey strap.
Andrew Martonik / Digital Trends

The Pixel Watch is now accessible for preorder from Google, ranging from $350 for its base mannequin with GPS. There’s additionally the choice to have it with mobile LTE connectivity, which is able to price $50 additional.

The Apple Watch Series 8 is obtainable within the U.S. and over 40 international locations. The base mannequin with GPS connectivity and 41mm case measurement prices $399, whereas fashions with mobile connectivity begin at $499. The 45mm mannequin begins at $429, whereas its mobile sibling prices $529.

Overall winner: Apple Watch Series 8

The Apple Watch Series 8 could not have added an excessive amount of compared to the Apple Watch Series 7, nevertheless it does win out towards the Pixel Watch general. Its superior efficiency and extra expansive health-tracking options give it the benefit, even when the Pixel Watch actually has an interesting design, easy-to-use software program, a great vary of health choices, and a few welcome particular options in addition. Of course, in case you personal a Google Pixel smartphone (fairly than an iPhone), it makes extra sense to have a Pixel Watch to go along with it (and vice versa), and also you actually gained’t be dissatisfied in case you do.

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