Skip to main content

Google’s smartwatch is coming sooner than we thought

Image used with permission by copyright holder

Anonymous sources who have inside knowledge of Google’s hardware plans have been chatting to the Wall Street Journal, and indicated the firm is in the final stages of producing its first smartwatch. Apparently, it’s almost ready for mass production, and could make start its journey down the lines in a matter of months.

This follows on from a report published in mid-October, which said the device would be coming, “Sooner rather than later,” and that it had been codenamed Gem. Rumors have also gathered the watch would launch alongside the Nexus 5 smartphone, which will also introduce Android 4.4 KitKat. We’ve been expecting its arrival all month, and the end is finally in sight, as October 31 and November 1 are still potential launch dates. If the Wall Street Journal’s sources are correct, and mass production of the watch hasn’t started yet, then it’s unlikely to be joining the Nexus 5.

Smartwatches have been big news this year thanks to the success of the Pebble, and the subsequent introduction of the Sony SmartWatch 2 and the Samsung Galaxy Gear. We’ve not seen any pictures or leaked specs regarding Google’s Gem, but it’s expected to make full use of Google Now. This means it’ll keep you up to date with appointments, calendar entries, traffic reports, travel information, the weather and other personal business, all with minimal prompting from you.

Google has often talked about poor battery life ruining our smartphone experience, and according to the WSJ’s sources, Google is working just as hard to extend the life of the Gem’s battery by reducing power consumption. So far, the Pebble leads the pack in this respect, thanks to it not using the color screens favored by the SmartWatch 2 and the Galaxy Gear.

Wearable tech is Google’s latest baby, and it’s obviously excited about the prospects. The question is, when both the Gem watch and Google Glass are finally on sale, does Google really expect you to wear both?

Editors' Recommendations

Andy Boxall
Senior Mobile Writer
Andy is a Senior Writer at Digital Trends, where he concentrates on mobile technology, a subject he has written about for…
We have some bad news about the Google Pixel 9
A render of the Google Pixel 9 smartphone in black.

When the first wave of Google Pixel 9 series leaks arrived on the scene a few weeks ago, what really got us excited was the camera upgrade for the entry-level model. The leaked renders envisioned a triple-lens rear camera setup for the Pixel 9 that added a periscope-style telephoto snapper at the back alongside a radical design change.

Well, it seems those changes will remain a pipe dream, at least in 2024. OnLeaks, in collaboration with 91Mobiles, has shared alleged renders of the Pixel 9, claiming that the triple-camera devices in those leaked renders actually depicted the pricier Pixel 9 Pro and a new Pixel 9 Pro XL variant.

Read more
Bixby vs. Google Assistant: Which AI is better for you?
google assistant mobile.

The world of AI has seen tons of innovation recently, with ChatGPT and OpenAI stealing much of the spotlight over the past year. However, ChatGPT is relatively new compared to two other AI platforms available in 2024 -- Samsung's Bixby and Google Assistant. And while Bixby and Google Assistant might not have the "cool factor" of emerging AI systems, there's no denying their versatility and functionality.
Google Assistant and Samsung's Bixby are available on a variety of Android devices. They'll both take commands and help streamline your daily tasks -- but is one better than the other? And are Bixby and Google Assistant compatible with all Android devices, or are they limited in their reach? More importantly, do they work on devices beyond smartphones?
Here's a comprehensive comparison of Bixby and Google Assistant to help you decide which fits best with your lifestyle.
Bixby vs. Google Assistant: device integration

Google Assistant is available on all Google Nest and Home products, including Android TVs, lights, security cams, speakers, and more. Google Assistant is also available on Android Auto, so you can use the virtual assistant to execute commands when you’re driving. Google Assistant is available on other brands' smart devices too, so you can use Google's voice assistant on Lenovo's Smart Home System. You'll also find it in all of the best Android phones, but did you know you can also download and use it on Apple iPhones as well?
Samsung’s Bixby, on the other hand, is limited to Samsung devices, like the Galaxy S23 Ultra. It's also limited to only being able to control other devices via the SmartThings app, rather than having native support. It’s not necessarily a bad thing, but it is more restricted. However, full functionality of Bixby is limited to newer devices, so unlike Google Assistant, which tends to be available to older devices, you'll need to keep upgrading to get the most out of Bixby.
This won’t matter much for users who’ve been using Samsung devices for years and want to continue investing in new Samsung products, but if you live with people using different Android devices, Google Assistant might be a better option for smoother integration across devices.
The winner is pretty clear here. Google Assistant is available on a lot more devices, including Apple iPhones, and helps you to create a comprehensive system for convenient use. 
Winner: Google Assistant
Bixby vs. Google Assistant: performance and accessibility

Read more
When is my phone getting Android 14? Here’s everything we know
Android 14 logo on the Google Pixel 8 Pro.

Android 14 is out now, and as usual, the first to get it was Google's own Pixel phone family. Not to be undone, Samsung pushed out its version of Android 14 — One UI 6 — after a relatively short beta period and has seemingly now completed its Android 14 rollout. Nothing, the new phone company on the block, has done the same. Now, we're just waiting for more news from Motorola, who has become the stick in the mud holding everyone up.

If you're rocking an Android phone that is still stuck on an old build, here's everything we know about official Android 14 rollout plans for all major brands available in the U.S. market. We recommend using your device's Find on page function to pinpoint your device on this list.

Read more