Our first look at what appears to be the Google Pixel Watch takes place under bizarre circumstances: someone reportedly found their prototype lying around in a restaurant and sent photos of it to Android Central on condition of anonymity. Images of the purported device match what we’ve seen of previously leaked renders, right down to the watch’s circular face, rotating crown, and nearly bezel-less design.
As shown in the photos, a physical crown sits between two buttons on the side of the watch. If it sounds like the Samsung Galaxy Watch 4, the two buttons can be used to turn the watch on or off, return to the home screen, or even as a shortcut to view recently used apps. Meanwhile, the little hole next to the crown could be a microphone or maybe an altimeter sensor used to track climbing stairs. Like Android Central notes, the four pins on the side of the watch can be used for testing purposes and may not appear on the final model.
The underside of the watch features a black frame with what looks like an oval-shaped health tracking sensor in the center. Android CentralThe source also states that the bottom of the watch has a smooth feel, noting that it “looks metallic but feels like it’s covered in glass,” similar to the watch’s glass backing. ‘Apple Watch.
Unfortunately, from Android Central source was unable to fully start the watch to see what the UI might look like. When they tried to turn it on, a white Google logo appeared and nothing happened after that. A charger was also not left with the watch, but as Android Central Notes, the watch can be charged in its case, just like Apple Watch and Google-owned Fitbit Versa 3 and Sense smartwatches. While there’s no image of the strap actually attached to the watch, it does appear to come with a proper method of snapping the straps on, while the straps themselves resemble those that come with the smartwatch line. from Fitbit.
What’s almost more interesting than the watch itself is the story behind it. It’s similar to how the iPhone 4 was leaked in 2010 – someone found a prototype iPhone in a restaurant, which was then bought and demolished by Gizmodo (whose photos have all mysteriously disappeared from GizmodoBesides). It turns out that a software engineer left the prototype there, so it’s clear that such a situation happened and can happen.
But what’s weird about this lost and found case is that it doesn’t even look like Google is looking for the device (unlike Apple which appealed to retrieve its prototype iPhone at the time) . Of course, there’s always the possibility that this is all an elaborate ruse by Google to get more publicity for its next watch, as it’s all very reminiscent of when a Pixel 3 XL was found on the back of a Lyft (did you think we’d already forget, Google?).
There are so many questions left unanswered here, and while the circumstances surrounding the discovery of the watch will never be clarified, at least the features of the actual watch will be. So far we know Google will be calling the device the Pixel Watch (huge surprise there), and we’ll likely find out even more details at Google I/O next month.