The new Google Pixel Watch has a lot to offer, especially for Pixel users who have gone until now without a dedicated smartwatch to complement their smartphones. But there’s also a big thing Google’s first smartwatch doesn’t provide compared to the competition — and I mean literally “big.”
There’s only one size option for the Pixel Watch: 41mm. For many of the best smartwatches, including the Apple Watch Series 8 and Samsung Galaxy Watch 5, 41mm (or a close equivalent) is the smaller of two size options. This accommodates choice for shoppers, no matter if that choice is based on comfort or personal preference.
For me, the 41mm Apple Watch looks like it fits better on my wrist, though I prefer to wear the 45mm size, since it lets me see my screen more clearly. Similarly, the 41mm Google Pixel Watch felt great to wear, but downsizing display-wise between the Google Pixel Watch vs. Apple Watch Series 8 took some getting used to. The Pixel Watch’s chunky bezel certainly didn’t help, either.
The Galaxy Watch 5 comes in 40mm and 44mm, also giving shoppers sizes to choose from. Even though the Google Pixel Watch might be the better Wear OS smartwatch in terms of Google app integrations, one of the reasons the Galaxy Watch 5 remains the overall best smartwatch for Android is because it gives more choice.
There’s an interest in even larger displays, with the 46mm Samsung Galaxy Watch 5 Pro and 49mm Apple Watch Ultra launching this year. These watches are intended for outdoor sports use, though from a handful of adopters I've spoken to, I learned some people might want them just to have a bigger smartwatch.
Google Pixel Watch needs a bigger size option
Larger smartwatch sizes come at a premium, of course. You'll pay a $30 and $20 premium for the bigger sizes of the Apple Watch Series 8 and Galaxy Watch 5, respectively. With the Pixel Watch starting at $349 (going up to $399 for LTE,) I'm sure people would spend between $20-$30 more for a smartwatch size that's better suited for their wrist.
I had my dad try on the Pixel Watch, and he noted that it felt far too small for a larger wrist. Not only that, he struggled to read the on-screen fitness metrics when he borrowed the watch to track a walk. Again, part of that could be blamed on the Pixel Watch's bezel size, but that doesn't change the fact that the Pixel Watch should've come in second size configuration; specifically, a larger one.
For a while now, I've been of the opinion that a bigger screen makes smartwatches more usable. We're not yet at the point of them replacing our phones, but the more you can comfortably accomplish from your wrist the more reason there is to be a smartwatch user. If Google is hoping to introduce Pixel phone users to a smartwatch experience with maximum potential, it'd be smart to think big the next time around.
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Kate Kozuch is the managing editor of social and video at Tom’s Guide. She covers smartwatches, TVs and audio devices, too. Kate appears on Fox News to talk tech trends and runs the Tom's Guide TikTok account, which you should be following. When she’s not filming tech videos, you can find her taking up a new sport, mastering the NYT Crossword or channeling her inner celebrity chef.