Pixel Watch rumors hint at major Google Assistant overhaul, Exynos chipset

Wear OS 3 Google Pixel Watch Savior
Wear OS 3 Google Pixel Watch Savior (Image credit: Nick Sutrich / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Evidence continues to emerge of the existence of a Pixel Watch.
  • Google may use an Exynos chip to power the Pixel Watch in lieu of Snapdragon Wear.
  • The Pixel Watch is rumored to receive a new Google Assistant experience.

Rumors continue to suggest that Google is preparing to launch a Pixel Watch relatively soon. The latest evidence comes from the Google app and Wear OS 3 emulator that was recently updated.

9to5Google discovered a reference to the Pixel Watch in a recent update to the Google app. The code references "PIXEL_EXPERIENCE_WATCH," similar to how Google designates Pixel-exclusive software features within its apps. Not only does this point to a watch, but it indicates that there will be certain features arriving on this device tat may not reach other Wear OS watches.

So far, that could include the watch faces that were uncovered in the Wear OS 3 emulator, but beyond that, it's unknown.

Additionally, 9to5Google discovered a new design for the Google Assistant in the emulator. From the image, the design will mirror how Assistant looks on Android smartphones, with a light bar appearing at the bottom of the screen.

The image also references a trigger button above the crown, which hasn't been gleaned in any Pixel Watch renders. That means it could likely be an overall redesign for Wear OS 3.

Source: 9to5Google and Jon Prosser

That said, it could coincide with a "next-generation Assistant" that 9to5Google expects will arrive alongside the watch. This is similar to the Pixel version of Google Assistant that allows for on-device processing, suggesting a much-improved AI experience on the Pixel Watch.

Lastly, 9to5Google has found references to an Exynos chip alongside mentions of Rohan, which is the codename for the Pixel Watch. This could suggest that Google will skip out on the Qualcomm Snapdragon Wear 4100 that powers some newer Wear OS watches, or its rumored successor. Instead, it will use either the same chip as the Galaxy Watch 4, which has proven to work quite well, or it will be a completely different chip.

Since Samsung builds the Tensor chip in the Pixel 6 based on its Exynos design, it seems likely that Google will go a similar route with its smartwatch to match branding across devices. That way, Google can play up the AI processing capabilities of the watch, which would be pretty significant since Google Assistant has been pretty lackluster on Wear OS, to say the least.

Derrek Lee
Managing Editor

Derrek is the managing editor of Android Central, helping to guide the site's editorial content and direction to reach and resonate with readers, old and new, who are just as passionate about tech as we are. He's been obsessed with mobile technology since he was 12, when he discovered the Nokia N90, and his love of flip phones and new form factors continues to this day. As a fitness enthusiast, he has always been curious about the intersection of tech and fitness. When he's not working, he's probably working out.