Google lied about the Pixel Watch’s ‘24-hour’ battery life — it’s actually longer


I adore my Pixel Watch. It’s like a satisfyingly symmetrical black pebble that can tell the time, date, weather, and a multitude of health-tracking metrics in all manner of stylish ways. In the lead-up to the big reveal during the Google October event, I declared the state of Google’s first smartwatch would be the only condition stopping me from picking up the Pixel 7. But I was sold after the tech giant gave a rundown of what the wearable could do.

Seamless connectivity to your Pixel devices? Check. Integrated Fitbit fitness and health tracking right on your wrist? You got it. Helpful apps like Google Maps and YouTube Music to listen even when offline? Done and done. All this wrapped up in a beautifully compact design makes for a promising smartwatch. But listen — I ain’t no schmuck.

I knew full well that the Pixel Watch is a first-generation smartwatch, meaning it will inevitably come with a few pain points. That old Exynos 9110 SoC — a four-year-old chip used in the first Samsung Galaxy Watch in 2018 — and strangely large display bezel were already strong indications that Google’s wearable wouldn’t be perfect. But this is understandable for a first-gen device, and the Pixel Watch still made enough of an impact to turn heads.

I was lucky enough to get the Pixel Watch for free in a limited-time deal, so I don’t feel as hard done by when experiencing the smartwatch’s faults. However, there is one thing that irks me: battery life. 

(Image credit: Google)

Declaring to boast “up to 24 hours” of battery, that’s quite a bold claim from a smartwatch fitted with a 294mAh battery capacity. Sure, the Cortex M33 co-processor is there to help out with power efficiency, but a full day? I’m intrigued. But I know to take a company’s claims with a pinch of salt. “Maybe it’s not a full 24 hours,” I told myself, “but it must be relatively close, right?”

Nope, I was gravely mistaken. After a few days of general use, from recording a daily 40-minute workout to receiving a bundle of notifications and using Google Maps, I found I was charging my Pixel Watch twice a day — averaging every five hours. And that was without having the Always-on option turned on. For a wearable that’s meant to stay on your wrist, that’s not a good look. So, it got me wondering: how on Earth did Google come up with its 24-hour claim?

The claim 



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