The alleged Google Pixel Watch recaptured the headlines yesterday, after a rather long hiatus. Remember, a smartwatch made by Google has been rumored for years, and, if the recent chatter holds any truth to it, we might soon see it. Who knows, maybe Google will show something off at the upcoming Developer Conference, so we can get more clarity.
Even though it’s been a long time coming, where would the supposed Pixel Watch sit and rank on a market that is saturated?
There are currently three major smartwatch categories out there: on one hand, we have the Apple Watch running on its own watchOS, and on the other hand (pun intended) we have all the Google Wear OS-powered devices. In between, we have the HUAWEIs, the Samsungs, and the FitBits (to name a few), running on a different platform, proprietary or not.
The Apple Watch is really no competition for the other two categories as it’s only compatible with the iPhone, and, to be honest, an iPhone user will likely only purchase an Apple Watch rather than a third-party solution.
Pixel Watch and its competition
Now that we knocked the Apple Watch out of the proverbial ring, the Pixel Watch will have to compete with devices in the other two segments. Whether Tizen, HarmonyOS, or another platform built upon RTOS, these devices have already established themselves on the market.
Both HUAWEI and Samsung have some really compelling models on shelves, for every look, and for every wallet. The Pixel Watch will indeed have the advantage of having notifications you can actually do something with instead of just dismissing, but you simply can’t beat the outrageous battery life these watches offer. HUAWEI comes to mind, and HONOR, with their monstrous, more than one week-long runs.
…and then we have all the other offerings running Wear OS, from Louis Vuitton to Mobvoi, and everything in between, designer or not. These are some heavyweights that, in the absence of a Google watch, have established themselves on the market using Google’s own Wear OS.
We also need to mention that, if the rumors are true, Samsung will likely embrace Wear OS for its future models, making the competition even more cutthroat.
Not all is lost for the Pixel Watch
Now, before we write the pre-launch obituary for the Pixel Watch, it makes sense to acknowledge the probable future customer. Just like in the case of Apple users, the most likely buyer for a Google Pixel Watch is a Google Pixel smartphone owner. Yes, being invested in the Google ecosystem is possible across many brands, but purists will likely flock to the online stores to complete their Google hardware collection.
And this, I believe, will be the entire raison d’être for the Pixel Watch. It will likely be a niche product not necessarily aimed at the masses. Google might knowingly target a specific chunk of the user base – the purists and loyalists – and by doing that, on a smaller scale, it could offer the Pixel Watch a chance of finding its place on the market, and growing. Sounds familiar? Just think of the Pixel phone line-up, where it began, and where it is today.
Which begs the question: is it too late for the Pixel Watch or is it going to be just right, with the proper pricing and targeting? Let us know in the comments below: would you buy a Pixel Watch? Why?
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