Well, according to notorious gadget leaker Evan Blass, we can count on a second generation of Pixel Buds headphones. The current Pixel Buds were introduced last year as Google’s take on wireless earbuds. Pixel Buds integrate with the Google Translate app on Pixel smartphones, and it features rather robust Google Assistant integration.
There’s no word on what features that will be included with the second generation, but battery life is already outstanding (24 hours), so we’d like to see controls to allow you to skip a track (or go back to a previous one) and perhaps less sensitive touch controls (which can be very easily activated by accident in the current iteration).
Perhaps the biggest news on the accessory front is that Blass says that Google will launch its own branded Pixel smartwatch alongside the Pixel 3 and Pixel 3 XL. We’ve heard this rumor in years past, and it has never come to fruition. However, this time around we’re slightly more optimistic given the source of the rumor and the fact that Qualcomm will soon launch next generation Snapdragon hardware specifically designed for wearables.
Qualcomm’s Snapdragon Wear 2100 processor has been around since early 2016 and has been featured in just about every Android Wear (now Wear OS) smartwatch announced since then. Pankaj Kedia, Qualcomm’s senior director of wearables, confirmed that the new chip is en route, and that it would be featured in a new flagship smartwatch that will be available in time for the holidays. That sounds like the perfect opportunity for a Pixel Watch.
“When we go to generation three, it’s designed from the ground up for a no-compromises smartwatch experience with dedicated chips that make your watch look pretty when you’re not looking at it, that bring the best fitness and watch experience, and extend battery life,” said Kedia in an interview with Warable. Given that the current Snapdragon Wear 2100 chip is manufactured using a 28nm process, Qualcomm can make some big strides in power efficiency by going with a 10nm LPP or even 14nm process.
We’re sure to hear more leaks on Google’s upcoming Pixel family in the coming weeks and months, so we’ll keep you abreast of all the information that we learn along the way.