Last October, Google finally released its much-anticipated first smartwatch, the Pixel Watch, after a long development process. The watch offered an attractive design, integration with Fitbit on Wear OS 3, and the promise of a 24-hour battery life. However, many users have found that the battery life falls short of expectations.
Concerns about the Pixel Watch’s battery life were already being discussed before its release. One reason is that it uses a relatively outdated chipset, Samsung’s 10nm Exynos 9110 from 2018, compared to newer and more efficient silicon used in its competitors such as the 5nm Exynos W920 found in the 2021 Samsung Galaxy Watch 4 and 2022 Samsung Galaxy Watch 5.
In reality, the battery life of the Pixel Watch has proven to be unpredictable, with various usage scenarios demonstrating the significant impact that even a single setting change can have on the watch’s performance. This is especially true considering the relatively small size of the Pixel Watch’s battery (294mAh).
If you’re struggling to find ways to improve the battery life of your Pixel Watch or you’ve exhausted all your options and are looking for fresh ideas, our collection of tips for extending your Pixel Watch’s battery life is sure to offer something helpful.
The tilt-to-wake feature on the Google Pixel Watch is designed to automatically turn on the watch face when you tilt your wrist to check the time. While this is a convenient feature, it can also drain the battery by constantly monitoring motion and orientation.
If you’re looking to conserve battery life, you can easily disable tilt-to-wake in just four steps:
- Swipe down from the watch face on your Pixel Watch to access quick settings.
- Tap on the gear icon to access the Settings menu.
- Select Gestures from the list.
- Toggle the Tilt-to-wake feature on or off based on your preference.
If you don’t want to turn off tilt-to-wake, you can still conserve battery life by adjusting the brightness settings instead. The Pixel Watch comes with five levels of manual brightness control and three levels of brightness control with Adaptive Brightness, which automatically adjusts screen brightness based on the brightness of your surroundings to enhance readability.
To adjust the brightness settings on your Pixel Watch, start by swiping down from your chosen watch face to bring up quick settings. Then, tap the cog icon to open the full Settings menu. Next, tap on Display and select Adjust brightness. Finally, use the ‘-‘ and ‘+’ symbols to manually adjust the screen brightness up or down. You can also toggle the Adaptive Brightness feature on or off.
To improve visibility on bright, sunny days, the Pixel Watch has a feature called Sunlight Boost that increases the display brightness beyond the maximum manual setting for a short time. However, this feature can drain the battery faster, so you may want to turn it off. Here are the steps to do so:
- Swipe down from your chosen watch face to access quick settings.
- Tap the cog icon to open the full Settings menu.
- Tap on Display.
- Tap on Sunlight Boost.
- Toggle the Sunlight Boost switch to turn the feature on or off.
VIBRATIONS & HAPTICS
In addition to audible notifications, the Pixel Watch utilizes a haptic system that produces vibrations to alert you to notifications, alarms, and interactions with the rotating crown on the watch’s side. Although haptic feedback enhances the user experience, it consumes battery power.
To adjust haptic settings on your Pixel Watch, follow these steps:
- Swipe down from your watch face to open quick settings.
- Tap the cog icon to access the Settings menu.
- Tap on Vibration.
- Toggle the Vibration & Haptics and Using Crown options on or off, depending on your preferences.
The Pixel Watch includes a feature called Battery Saver, which disables both the tilt-to-wake and AOD functions in one go. This feature is ideal for times when you need to extend your watch’s battery life until you can charge it. To enable Battery Saver, follow these simple steps:
- Swipe down from your chosen watch face to bring up quick settings.
- Tap the battery icon to access the Battery menu in Settings.
- Tap on Battery Saver to turn the feature on or off.
The Pixel Watch pairs with your phone via Bluetooth, but if they get separated and you don’t have an active LTE connection, the watch will connect to the nearest Wi-Fi network it can find.
However, if you don’t rely on Wi-Fi connectivity or don’t need to receive notifications when your phone is out of range, you can turn off the Pixel Watch’s Wi-Fi feature to help save battery life.
To do this, follow these steps:
- Swipe down from your watch face to access the quick settings menu.
- Tap on the cog icon to open the Settings menu.
- Scroll down and tap on Connectivity.
- Tap on Wi-Fi.
- Toggle the Wi-Fi switch to turn the feature on or off.
Out of the box, the Pixel Watch offers a wide range of watch faces, and you can also download additional ones from first and third-party sources. However, the style of watch face you select can significantly impact battery life, as the watch uses an OLED display, and faces with more true black consume less power. Complications, such as weather and heart rate, consume more battery life, especially if they frequently update. Therefore, it is best to choose a simpler, darker watch face with fewer complications.
To select a new watch face on your Pixel Watch, long-press on the current face to open the watch face selection menu. Swipe left or right to browse available watch faces. You can customize the colors and complications of each watch face by tapping the pencil icon below it. When editing, swipe until the complications are highlighted, then tap on the one you want to change. From the subsequent vertically-scrolling menu, select Empty to remove a complication or choose a different one. Once you finish editing, press the physical Haptic Crown on the side of the Pixel Watch to set your new watch face.
The always-on-display (AOD) is a feature that keeps the Pixel Watch’s screen constantly lit up, eliminating the need to tilt your wrist, press a button, or touch the display to check the time.
However, this feature drains the battery faster than usual. Therefore, if you want to conserve your Pixel Watch’s battery life, you can easily turn off the AOD by following these simple steps:
- Swipe down on your chosen watch face to access the quick settings menu.
- Tap the gear icon to open the full Settings menu.
- Select Display.
- Scroll down and tap on Always-on screen to toggle the feature on or off.
Please note that when turning the AOD on, the Pixel Watch will warn you that doing so will reduce battery life.
Tiles on Wear OS 3 are a convenient way to access data from various apps installed on your watch without the need to open each one. There are Tiles for different purposes such as displaying steps, sleep data, weather, and music controls, and developers are continuously adding more to the list. However, having multiple Tiles on your watch face can drain the battery faster as the more Tiles you have, the more data Wear OS has to maintain.
To remove a Tile on your Pixel Watch, swipe left or right from your chosen watch face to browse through your Tiles, then long-press on the Tile you want to delete. Once the pencil icon appears underneath, swipe the Tile up and you’ll see a trash can icon behind it, indicating that it has been removed from your Tiles.
The battery life of your Pixel Watch can be significantly affected by the number of notifications it receives. When your watch receives communication from your phone, it vibrates and the screen turns on to notify you, all of which consumes power.
However, you can select which apps send notifications to your Pixel Watch to prevent unnecessary battery drain. Here’s how:
Open the Pixel Watch app on your phone. Go to Settings and select Notifications. Under ‘From phone apps’, tap ‘See all apps from the last 7 days’ to see the list of apps that can and have sent notifications to your Pixel Watch. Toggle off the apps for which you don’t want to receive notifications on your Pixel Watch.
For most Pixel Watch users, charging the watch once every 24 hours is the minimum requirement. For those who also want to use the sleep-tracking feature, it’s essential to be strategic about when to recharge the watch.
However, if you don’t prioritize sleep tracking, you could charge your Pixel Watch while you sleep instead.
Here’s what you need to do:
- Take off your Pixel Watch as you prepare for bed.
- Connect the watch to its magnetic charging puck.
- Go to sleep.