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Google Pixel Watch 3 wishlist: All the features I want to see

The Pixel Watch 2 was a big improvement, but I'm hoping to see even more upgrades with the third iteration.
By

Published onMarch 3, 2024

A Google Pixel Watch 2 displays the watch face.

Google got off to a slightly rocky start when it released its first smartwatch in 2022, but it didn’t take the company long to find its way. The Google Pixel Watch 2 is one of the best smartwatches on the market and has a long list of great features. Of course, nothing is perfect. Although we have a long time before a new model arrives, here’s my wishlist for what I’d like to see from the Google Pixel Watch 3.

Durability could use improvement

Pixel Watch 2 with a grid app view

The Pixel Watch faced significant durability issues, particularly with its display, mostly due to the relatively thin glass used. The Pixel Watch 2 saw slight improvements in glass quality, yet there have been numerous reports from consumers and reviewers indicating that the watch remains fairly easy to damage. Compounding the issue is the watch’s nearly impossible self-repair process, forcing owners to rely solely on Google Pixel Watch Customer Support for repairs. This not only adds inconvenience but also results in being without the watch for an extended period.

The Google Pixel Watch 3 presents an opportunity to address these durability concerns definitively. Opting for thicker, more durable glass appears to be the most straightforward solution. Although this may slightly increase the device’s bulk, weight, and cost, it represents a worthwhile trade-off for enhanced durability.

The Pixel Watch 3 needs more sizes

Google Pixel Watch 2 charging

Garmin, Apple, and Samsung all typically offer multiple sizes for their watches, but the same can’t be said for Google. The Pixel Watch 2 comes in just one size: 41mm. While that might be perfect for many, some of us have big wrists or just want a larger display or better battery life, even if it means it’s slightly heftier to wear.

The solution is simple, Google should add a 45mm option to the Pixel Watch 3. This would appeal to those who want a bigger display or a larger size that better complements their wrist size.

The good news is it’s very likely Google will do just that. Recently a new report from 9to5Google from a “source familiar with the matter” surfaced suggesting that the company will introduce a second size this time around.

While we’re at it, how about more colorways?

google pixel watch apple watch usb c puck charger

The Google Pixel Watch 2 adopts a fairly reserved approach to case colors, opting for metallic shades of gold, black, and silver. Personally, I align with Henry Ford’s sentiment, believing black to be the only color anyone ever needs (half kidding), though I suspect my opinion might be a minority. Several smartwatches on the market offer a more diverse palette of unique shades. Apple, in particular, excels in this area with its Apple Watch Series 9, which is available in shades like Product Red and Pink.

If Google aims for the Pixel Watch 3 to stand out, incorporating a splash of color seems like a straightforward strategy. Perhaps Google could draw inspiration from its Pixel phone series and introduce colors such as Rose or Bay Blue, or bring back old Pixel favorites like Oh So Orange. I had the latter color on my Pixel back in the day, despite the fact I almost always get black phones. It just stood out in a way that was hard to ignore. Here’s hoping the Pixel Watch 3 can do the same with its case colorway in 2024.

Safety Signal is a great idea, but it shouldn’t cost a dime

A Google Pixel Watch 2 enables Emergency Sharing.

I really appreciate the Safety Signal feature on the Pixel Watch 2. In essence, it allows you to use SOS cellular features in an emergency without needing an active LTE cellular plan. Although this feature necessitates an additional $50 for the LTE model, it’s a minor sacrifice for the peace of mind it provides. It’s always possible to find yourself on a hike or run with a dead phone. Having a backup solution for emergencies is reassuring. However, the requirement to pay for the Fitbit Premium subscription is less appealing. Although Premium costs only $10 a month, there are cellular plans for watches that start at a similar price point. Moreover, unlike a full cellphone plan, this service is only functional in emergencies.

I believe Google should cover the costs for emergency services and offer this feature for free to Pixel Watch 3 LTE users. This would position Google uniquely in the market, providing a standout feature that no other brand offers for free. While Apple and a few other brands have SOS features, they all require an active (and paid) cellular connection.

GPS accuracy needs to be improved

A satellite map shows a Google Pixel Watch 2's GPS data.

In our own Pixel Watch 2 review, we found the watch’s GPS to be fairly inconsistent compared to other fitness trackers and devices. For example, during our testing, we found that the GPS would disappear and yet still keep claiming it was tracking. The distance reported would be inaccurate compared to devices like the Apple Watch. Not a great look for a watch that is clearly aimed at fitness thanks to its association with Fitbit technology. Simply put, I feel Google needs to upgrade its GPS sensor for the Pixel Watch 3.

Google Pixel Watch 3 wishlist: What feature would you most like to see added or improved?

233 votes

Will there be a Google Pixel Watch 3?

Pixel Watch 2 vs 1 crown

The Google Pixel Watch 2 is still just a few months old at the time of this writing, so it’ll be a while before Google officially confirms its plans. Aside from the previously mentioned report that the Pixel Watch 3 will allegedly come in two sizes, there haven’t been any other rumors just yet. Nevertheless, Google’s acquisition of Fitbit and improvements with the Watch 2 make it clear the company is likely just getting started.

As for when we might see it? Let’s take a quick look at the company’s launch history:

  • Pixel Watch — October 13, 2022
  • Pixel Watch 2 — October 12, 2023

Although there have only been two releases so far, the Pixel Watch has thus far always launched alongside the Pixel series in October. Unless Google makes a major shift here, we can expect the Pixel Watch 3 to arrive in the Fall of 2024 alongside the rumored Pixel 9.

Should you wait for the Google Pixel Watch 3?

A Google Pixel Watch 2 displays the Google Play Store.

If you’re interested in a Google-made watch, the Google Pixel Watch 3 is still well over a half year away. That’s a long time to wait, so I’d suggest picking up the current model. After all, the Pixel Watch 2 is already a great watch and is only a few months old.

Google Pixel Watch 2Google Pixel Watch 2
Google Pixel Watch 2
Runs a snappy Wear OS 4 • Added and upgraded advanced health sensors • Fast charging alleviates battery woes
MSRP: $349.99
Wear OS 4, advanced health sensors, and upgraded training features elevate the Pixel Watch 2
The Google Pixel Watch 2 retains the first model's successful features and refines several of the original's shortcomings. Added sensors, upgraded training tools, and a few key changes suggest a more finished product. Google's Wear OS 4 runs flawlessly, while advanced health tools from Fitbit join the lineup.

Not impressed by the Pixel Watch series? The most obvious alternative on the Android side of the fence is the Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 series ($349.99 at Amazon). For those who don’t mind switching to an iPhone in the process, the Apple Watch Series 9 ($392.67 at Amazon) is also a worthwhile alternative.