The Pixel Watch is the first Wear OS smartwatch with Fitbit integration following Google’s multibillion-dollar acquisition of the company, but it comes with a couple of missing features. Pixel Watch will not support automatic exercise tracking and some other Fitbit features.
As pointed out by our colleagues from connectthewatts Yesterday, a comparison of the Pixel Watch’s fitness features with the latest Fitbit smartwatches reveals some missing features.
The biggest missing feature is support for automatic exercise detection on the Pixel Watch, a key feature of Fitbit devices. Automatic workout detection uses 24/7 heart rate tracking and other sensors on your Fitbit to detect when your activity qualifies as a workout and starts a session based on that data. These auto-detected workouts also count toward your daily/weekly exercise goals in the Fitbit app.
But the Pixel Watch will lack support for automatic exercise detection altogether, as confirmed by a smartwatch comparison at the google store. Also missing from the Pixel Watch is support for swimming stroke tracking.
Elsewhere on the page, it is confirmed that the Pixel Watch also lacks support for Irregular heartbeat notificationsa function available in a huge list of Fitbit products that notifies the user of signs of atrial fibrillation. High/low heart rate notifications are also unavailable, despite Google’s focus on the accuracy of the Pixel Watch’s heart rate sensor.
Some other features missing from the Fitbit software suite include stress notifications and EDA sensors, guided breathing, “SmartWake” alarms, SpO2 tracking, and support for Fitbit’s new sleep profile feature.
Like our sister site connectthewatts noted, these are potentially major, perhaps even game-changing, issues on the health/fitness tracking side of the Pixel Watch. While the dedicated experience that Fitbit products provide will surely always have a handful of advantages, the Pixel Watch’s health experience feels quite compromised, even when compared to other Wear OS smartwatches, like the Galaxy Watch 5.
Hopefully, some of these missing fitness features may arrive in later updates. It seems reasonable that automatic workout detection, irregular heart rate notifications, sleep profile, and other features that use the existing sensors on the Pixel Watch could be added via software.
But still, this is hard to see. Health and fitness tracking has always been by far the biggest pain point of Wear OS as a platform, and the Fitbit integration was supposed to finally fix that. It turns out that there is still a long way to go.
Will these omissions hurt the smartwatch side of the Pixel Watch experience? We’ll have to wait and see.
The Pixel Watch is now available for pre-order on the Google Store, as well as other retailers like Best Buy.
More information about Pixel Watch:
*Added a note that Google mentions auto-follow support in other places. We’re checking with Google for the disparity.
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