Google Pixel Watch vs Samsung Galaxy Watch 5

The Google Pixel Watch has been one of the most anticipated smartwatches for years, and it’s finally here. It’s the first smartwatch to carry the Pixel name, and it’s focused on delivering great software and fitness features thanks to Wear OS and Fitbit integration. Then there’s the Galaxy Watch 5, one of Samsung’s best smartwatches, with tons of fitness features, Wear OS, and tight integration with the rest of the Samsung ecosystem.

They’re two of the best Android watches you can buy, but where are their weaknesses and what sets them apart? That’s what we’re going to find out.

It’s time to put the Pixel Watch and Galaxy Watch 5 head-to-head to help decide which is best for you.

google pixel watch product card cnnu




Show options


44mm, 40mm


1.26 oz

1 to 1.18 oz

water resistance

50 meters

50 meters

Battery Life (Rated)

24 hours

40 hours

Key Health and Safety Features

Full Fitbit integration, optical heart rate sensor, blood oxygen sensor

BioActive Heart Rate Sensor, Advanced Sleep Coaching, Blood Oxygen, BIA Sensor, Automatic Workout Tracking

color options

Champagne Gold, Matte Black, Polished Silver

graphite, silver, rose gold




pixel watch

The Pixel Watch is a solid choice for anyone who prioritizes aesthetics. Google has crafted a simple yet sophisticated design. It fits perfectly with the overall natural aesthetic shared by all of the company’s products.In other words, it is Very pixel.

But it’s also an easily annoying design. It’s only one size, and that size is small. It also feels more refined than most other smartwatches due to how the display glass melts from the sides. Make sure you don’t bump your wrist against anything while wearing it.

Meanwhile, the Galaxy Watch 5 addresses these issues. Available in 40mm and 44mm sizes, it uses Samsung’s sapphire crystal glass, which is 1.6 times stronger than previous Galaxy watches, and has an all-aluminum rim so you don’t have to worry about damaging it.

Galaxy Watch 5

The bezel is also smarter. On the Pixel Watch, Google has a very thick bezel around the display itself, which is almost jarring when you compare it to other watches. Meanwhile, the Galaxy Watch 5 has slimmer bezels, giving it a more modern feel.

Both models are available in a variety of colors: the Pixel Watch is available in champagne gold, polished silver and matte black, while the Galaxy Watch 5 is available in silver, graphite and rose gold. They each have a variety of different straps to complete the look, and both models are difficult to remove and attach new straps (though the Pixel Watch’s locking mechanism takes some getting used to).

TL;PhD: The Pixel Watch definitely looks better than the Galaxy Watch 5, but if you want something bigger and more durable, Samsung’s watch is your best bet.

Galaxy Watch 5

Both the Pixel Watch and Galaxy Watch 5 have a strong focus on fitness as their main selling point, but Samsung takes the crown here by offering a more complete fitness tracking package.

The Galaxy Watch 5 has just about every health feature you could want. It uses a 3-in-1 BioActive sensor that integrates optical heart rate, electrical cardiac signal and bioelectrical impedance analysis sensors in one unit. Together, they provide features such as heart rate tracking, body composition monitoring, electrocardiogram (ECG) support, and blood oxygen levels.

It’s all fed into Samsung’s Health app, which makes it easy to view your health data and track your progress. You can view heart rate patterns, body composition over time, stress levels, sleep stages when using the watch at night, and more. The best part is the variety of workouts you can track with the Watch 5, so every activity you engage in counts toward your fitness goals.

pixel watch

In contrast, the Pixel Watch is a bit lacking in the tech department. It doesn’t have a bioelectrical impedance analysis (BIA) system, so it can’t record body composition, but it has a heart rate sensor and SpO2 sensor for monitoring blood oxygen.

In classic Pixel fashion, however, it’s more about software than hardware when it comes to health tracking on the Pixel Watch. Google built the classic Fitbit fitness tracker experience into the Pixel Watch and made it the primary way to track your health.

During setup, you’ll be asked to install the Fitbit app on your phone and sign up for an account. From there, using a Pixel Watch will be immediately familiar to anyone who’s used a Fitbit in the past. There’s a variety of workouts to choose from, advanced sleep tracking, an easy way to share data with your doctor, and more. Plus, you get 6 months of free Fitbit Premium, which gives you an in-depth breakdown of your fitness, mindfulness skills and stress management scores.

The experience is pleasing and perfect for any existing Fitbit user who wants to make the jump to a more powerful smartwatch.

TL;PhD: Any fitness fanatic looking for a more holistic view of their health will prefer the Galaxy Watch 5, while fans of the Fitbit experience should check out the Pixel Watch.

pixel watch

We’ll keep it short and sweet: The Galaxy Watch 5 has great software, but the Pixel Watch has great software.

Both watches run Wear OS 3.5, the latest version of smartwatch software Google has developed in partnership with Samsung. They work in a similar way, each with the same Tiles interface that shows you information when swiping left or right on the clock face. They also both use the Play Store to install all other apps, and even notifications and quick settings are pretty much the same.

Galaxy Watch 5

However, Samsung has applied its One UI Watch 4.5 skin to the top, which gives it a unique Samsung experience. But like a Galaxy phone versus a Pixel phone, the Galaxy Watch 5 isn’t as smooth or responsive as the Pixel Watch. The Pixel Watch has Google’s unique experience with Wear OS 3.5, and it just feels better to use. Apps open faster, the user interface feels more responsive, and the system is generally smoother and smoother.

Google really kicked it out of the park. Of course, if you prefer the look and feel of One UI, the Watch 5 will surely satisfy your needs. But anyone who wants an experience that easily rivals the Apple Watch (aka the best smartwatch experience available right now) has the Pixel Watch.

TL;PhD: One UI Watch 4.5 on the Galaxy Watch 5 can’t match the silky smooth Google experience on Wear OS on the Pixel Watch.

Galaxy Watch 5

As you might expect, the Galaxy Watch 5 works best with a Galaxy phone. It’s all because Samsung puts so much emphasis on its own services that it’s hard to use the watch with a non-Samsung phone. In fact, if you wanted to do this, you’d have to install four or five apps to get it up and running. It’s tedious.

Using the Pixel Watch on a non-Pixel phone is a bit simpler, as many of the apps the watch uses may already be on your Android phone. In our tests with the Pixel Watch and Galaxy Z Fold 4, we found that the only two apps we needed to install were the Google Pixel Watch app and Fitbit. Otherwise, setup is as easy as using a Pixel phone.

pixel watch

Obviously, pairing a Pixel Watch with a Pixel phone is easier thanks to the cohesiveness of the Fast Pair and Google Pixel software experience, but if you insist on buying a Pixel Watch for your third-party branded Android phone, you should have a fine experience.

TL;PhD: It’s best to pair the Galaxy Watch 5 with a Galaxy phone or the Pixel Watch with a Pixel phone. But if you own a third-party Android device, it’s easier to get the Pixel Watch to work with it than the Galaxy Watch.

Galaxy Watch 5

In our testing, we found that the Galaxy Watch 5 lasted longer than the Pixel Watch, but not by a lot. The Watch 5 can easily last a full 24 hours on a charge — we wore it on our wrist at midnight for sleep tracking, wore it all day with a combination of fitness tracking and music streaming, and then at about 11pm, About 15% in the tank.Meanwhile, the same test on the Pixel Watch sees the watch freeze at 7pm

It’s not a huge difference, but it’s enough to make those worried about leftover juice in their watch after a long day gravitate towards the Watch 5. Of course, if you’re a particularly lightweight user, you can get through a full Pixel Watch day with no problem, but obviously the Watch 5 is the option if you need more power.

It’s worth noting that enabling always-on display on either watch will cause them to drain power much faster than otherwise, so you’ll want to keep it off for optimal battery life.

As a side note, the charging time for both watches is about the same. It usually takes an hour or so to go from zero to 100% using the included fast charger.

TL;PhD: While the Pixel Watch can last a full day for lighter users, the Galaxy Watch 5’s ability to last a few extra hours on a charge will be a huge draw for those who care about battery life.

The Galaxy Watch 5 and Pixel Watch are two of the best smartwatches you can get for your Android phone, both with great fitness experiences and solid software features.

Really, it depends on what you want to do with your smartwatch. Fitness enthusiasts, Galaxy phone owners, and those who like to extend battery life by a few hours will appreciate the performance of the Galaxy Watch 5. But if you’re a Fitbit fan, love beautiful designs, or you own a Pixel phone or other non-Google device, the Pixel Watch is perfect.

If we had to give one watch a slight edge, it would be the Pixel Watch. All thanks to a great software experience. Despite its flaws in hardware, you can’t beat great software, and that’s what Google delivers.

But no matter which one you choose, you’re getting a solid smartwatch. Now is the perfect time to enter the world of Wear OS.

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