The Google Pixel Watch is closing in on its 1-year anniversary after first launching last October. At arrival, Google sold several Pixel Watch watch bands that we ranked to help you decide which to buy, since well, none were exactly that budget-friendly. There was another band we wanted to wear that was available at that time, though, and it was the most expensive of them all.
I’m talking about the Pixel Watch Metal Links Band that was first teased in October 2022, with pricing, but wasn’t up for purchase. That changed last week with the June Pixel Watch Feature Drop – you can now buy the Metal Links band in Brushed Silver or Matte Black for a cool $199.99.
Should you? I can finally share some thoughts there, thanks to Google sending me the Brushed Silver option for review purposes. Let’s take a look at it!
It’s well made and probably worth $199
I know that there will be folks who can’t justify spending $200 on a watch band for a smartwatch that might not last more than a year. This is not a cheap watch band and there are other metal bands that can be had for much more reasonable prices (like this one). But if you want the official metal band, I don’t think Google will disappoint anyone once they get it on the wrist.
This Metal Links Band is made of stainless steel and carries a really great weight. It feels as premium as its price suggests. It sports a brushed metal exterior and is put together like a watch band you might find on a higher-end mechanical watch. There isn’t a lot of play in between each link and you don’t get that cheap hollow or clinking sound that cheap bands are notorious for. It has been machined to a polished enough, almost satin brushed finish that it’s a pleasure to wear on the wrist, even if it does constantly remind you its there with its heft.
To size it, Google includes a tool that pinches spring bars in between each link, so you can do it yourself in a few minutes. I struggled at first, but there are enough extra links and different sized pieces that you should be able to get just the right fit. If anything, at least you don’t need to take it anywhere to get sized or pull out those old vintage watch tools – Google gives you what you need.
The clasp is a butterfly clasp, so it folds in from each side and then snaps into place. Each side of the clasp has a pusher to release the band once you are ready to take it off. The clasp, like the rest of the watch band, is nice quality and the release buttons take enough force that it should hold without detaching on its own should you bump your wrist.
As far as the overall look, it’s very similar to a Rolex Oyster bracelet, one of the most famous band types in history. It’s an iconic look that Google gets right, although the brushed silver finish doesn’t exactly match the polished look of my Pixel Watch case. In fact, it doesn’t match any of the finishes of the watches, which is going to bug some of you (it certainly bugs me). I haven’t seen the Matte Black in person, but the pictures also make it look like it doesn’t perfectly match the black Pixel Watch either.
Overall, I’d call this a watch band to splurge on if you want to take your Pixel Watch fashion game up a notch, maybe even to flex a bit. Just know that it isn’t water or sweat resistant, so keep it away from the gym or pool.
Will it work with Pixel Watch 2?
This is probably the most important question in my mind over whether or not you should buy this $200 Metal Links band. Because if Google releases a Pixel Watch 2 with meaningful internal upgrades, you may want to get one, yet you wouldn’t want to buy this $200 band and have it not be usable again.
Unfortunately at this time, we don’t know if any of the current Pixel Watch bands will work on the rumored upcoming Pixel Watch 2. My gut tells me that Google is going to essentially keep the exact same design, but swap to a better processor that’ll provide improved battery life and also upgrade the health sensor. So that should mean the same case and same band connector. It would be the approach that Apple takes with the Apple Watch, where bands just work from one year to the next as long as you buy a similar size Apple Watch.
Of course, that’s not confirmed and I’m only guessing there. I’m basing my guess on the fact that Google worked on this current design for years before releasing it and now are apparently ready to drop a follow-up on us only 12 months later. I’d be shocked if they massively switched up the design so quickly. I actually think Google will give it at least another year.
Any questions – drop them below!
If you’d like to buy the Metal Links Band, you’ll apparently have to get on a waitlist. Folks bought the hell out of them.