Google Pixel Watch battery life needs improvement

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Google’s Pixel Watch battery life isn’t the greatest compared to other smartwatches on the market. After using the watch for a couple of days, we think there is room for Google to improve the Pixel Watch’s battery life.

Pixel Watch battery life

Update 2: The Pixel Watch now lasts a lot longer in day-to-day usage. We aren’t too sure why, but we are big fans of the improvement. A number of apps on the watch have received updates, which could have fixed a power draining issue.

Update: After more testing the feature that seems to drain the battery the most is Tilt-to-wake. Turning it off has helped the battery life a decent amount, so for now I will ensure its off.

Normal usage

Over a normal workday, where most of it was spent at a desk, we managed to get the Pixel Watch to last 17 hours 51 minutes. This number short falls of Google’s up to 24-hour battery life claim by just over 6 hours. A breakdown of the battery life can be found below:

  • 100-75% = 3 hours 27 minutes
  • 75-50% = 5 hours 17 minutes
  • 50-25% = 4 hours 49 minutes
  • 25-0% = 4 hours 18 minutes

This time didn’t include any workout or sleep tracking. Before both activities the watch was charged to ensure it wouldn’t run out of battery during testing.

Workout tracking

During a 45-minute HIIT style workout, we have found the watch will drop by around 20%. This was found while using both the weights and bootcamp activity tracking modes turned on.

Sleep tracking

We have found that during sleep, Pixel Watch uses around 25-30% of battery. This is with bedtime mode turned on and leaving the watch to automatically detect sleep.

What could improve the battery life?

Something, we think, that adds to battery usage is the heart rate sensor. This was a feature focused on at the launch of the watch, with Google making sure we all know it pings every second, giving the most up-to-date heart rate reading possible.

While there is nothing wrong with this, being able to decide how often you want your heart rate recorded would be an excellent feature. Samsung’s watches do this well, giving users a few interval options for heart rate scanning. It would be interesting to see the change in battery life, if the Pixel Watch were to record your heart rate every 5 seconds, 10 seconds, 30 seconds, or once an hour.

Battery life extending settings

There are a number of things on the Pixel Watch, and all wearables in general that suck battery up. The following list is what we almost always do on all our smartwatches in an effort to get as much battery life as possible.

Screen timeout10 seconds
Always-on screenOff
Touch to wakeOn
Calendar syncOff
Emergency SOSOff
“Hey Google” voice detectionOff
Adaptive brightnessOn
Sunlight boostOff
Google WalletActive