Reviews - February 2, 2024

Pixel Watch is now a better remote control for your Pixel phone camera.

What you need to know

  • Previously, the Pixel Camera app on the Pixel Watch only allowed you to switch between front and rear camera systems or set a photo timer.
  • With the Pixel Camera 9.2 app update, Google has introduced the ability to change camera modes on your wrist.
  • Pixel Watch can switch between photo, video, night mode, portrait, slow motion, and time-lapse modes.

In the Pixel Camera update, Google quietly added more controls to the Pixel Watch version of the app. Users can now change the camera mode on their paired Pixel smartphones right from their wrist, as first spotted by 9to5Google.

Both generations of Pixel Watch lack an onboard camera, but support the Pixel Camera app. That’s because Pixel Watch users can control their Pixel phone’s camera with their smartwatch, which can be helpful in some situations. However, functionally it was quite limited.

In the past, there were two main ways the Pixel Watch could control the camera system of your Pixel phone. First, you can switch between using the front and rear cameras on your wrist. Users were also able to set a photo timer with their Pixel Watch. Both of these features are still present, but have been shuffled around a bit to add more camera controls.

The Pixel Camera app on the Pixel Watch is now split into three sections: Camera, Modes, and Timer. A central list displays each section and its current toggle. Tap each toggle to see the full list of available options. Switching between front and rear cameras is done in the Camera menu, and setting the timer is done in the Timer menu.

The new options can be found in the Mode menu. Here, users can access all the camera modes of Pixel smartphones available in the native mobile app. These include photo, video, night mode, portrait, slow motion, and time-lapse modes.

This app update for Pixel Camera definitely adds functionality to the Pixel Watch. Previously, if you wanted to change camera modes, you had to do so manually on your smartphone. I think this would be great for people who use their watch to take pictures from a distance. However, some may be frustrated that navigating the new toggle groups in the Pixel Camera app requires an extra tab.

The changes appear to have come with the latest Pixel Camera app update, version 9.2. This update started rolling out last year, so you should already have it installed by now. That means if you own a Pixel Watch or Pixel Watch 2, you can try it out right now.

Polished Silver Google Pixel Watch 2 with Bay Active Band

Smartwatch for Google Pixel users

Google’s Pixel Watch 2 is the best Fitbit fitness tracker and also has smartwatch features. It also integrates nicely with Pixel smartphones, including the Pixel Camera app.