Google’s Pixel Watch 2: Cutting-Edge Safety Tech for Your Wrist – A Game-Changer in Wearable Innovation

  • Google Pixel Watch 2 introduces Safety Check, a manual location-sharing feature, and Safety Signal for emergency SOS without LTE.
  • Safety Check requires setting an alert timer, emergency contacts, and is available on both Pixel Watch generations.
  • Safety Signal offers SOS features on Pixel Watch 2 with an active Fitbit Premium subscription, eliminating the need for a separate LTE plan.

In the ever-evolving world of wearable technology, Google’s Pixel Watch 2 has taken a significant leap forward with the introduction of two groundbreaking safety features – Safety Check and Safety Signal. These features are designed to enhance personal safety for users in South Africa and around the globe. Let’s dive into the details of these new safety features and how to use them effectively.

Safety Check: Your Proactive Companion

Safety Check is a proactive timer feature that sets the Pixel Watch 2 apart from the typical smartwatches on the market. This feature, though not automatic, can be a lifesaver in critical situations. It allows you to alert your chosen emergency contacts about your location if you don’t reach your intended destination within a specified time frame.

Compatibility for South African Users

Google recently rolled out Wear OS 4, making it available to the original Pixel Watch, which means both the first-generation Pixel Watch and the Pixel Watch 2 are now compatible with Safety Check. For South African users with the original Pixel Watch, ensure you upgrade to the latest software to access this feature.

Setting Up Safety Check

Before you can fully utilize Safety Check, here’s how to set it up on your Pixel Watch 2:

  1. Initiating Safety Check: Safety Check is a feature you must start manually when needed, making it a proactive tool. It’s advisable to familiarize yourself with this function before you require it.
  2. Setting a Reason: You can set a reason for initiating a Safety Check timer, which helps provide context for your emergency contacts.
  3. Adding Emergency Contacts: The first time you use Safety Check, the watch will prompt you to set up your emergency contacts. This crucial step ensures that your loved ones receive your location information when necessary.
  4. Starting the Timer: To begin using Safety Check, follow these steps:
    • Press the crown button.
    • Scroll down and tap “Safety & Emergency.”
    • Select “Safety Check.”
    • Choose the activity or reason for your timer, such as taking public transportation or walking alone.
    • Set the timer duration as needed.
    • Select the emergency contacts you want to share your location with.
  5. Notification Option: You have the option to notify your chosen contacts when you start the Safety Check timer. This notification is optional.
  6. Activate the Timer: Tap “Start Timer” to initiate the Safety Check timer.
  7. Monitoring the Timer: If you forget to turn off the timer, your emergency contacts will receive notifications about your location. Additionally, during an active timer, you can choose to share your location immediately if the situation requires it.

Safety Check is a powerful feature that can provide peace of mind for users in South Africa, particularly when they’re in unfamiliar or potentially risky situations.

Safety Signal: Emergency SOS Features Without LTE Plan

Safety Signal, available exclusively on the Pixel Watch 2, introduces an innovative solution for users who wish to access emergency SOS features without the need for a separate carrier LTE plan. It provides access to crucial features like calls to and from emergency contacts, Safety Check, Emergency Sharing, Emergency SOS, and Fall Detection, even when your phone is out of reach.

Compatibility and Requirements

Safety Signal is available on the Pixel Watch 2, provided you have the LTE model of the watch and an active Fitbit Premium subscription. It’s important to note that you don’t need a dedicated LTE smartwatch plan through your carrier to use Safety Signal. If you do have an LTE plan, Safety Check might be redundant as LTE plans enable multiple features that require LTE connectivity.

Safety Signal is available to South African users in the US, UK, Canada, and Germany. To utilize this feature, it’s essential to have an active Fitbit Premium subscription.

Transitioning from Fitbit to Google

South African users who previously used Fitbit and are now adopting the Pixel Watch 2 will need to migrate their Fitbit data to their Google account if they haven’t already. This migration is necessary to access Safety Signal and its associated safety features.

How to Enable Safety Signal

Here’s how you can activate Safety Signal on your Pixel Watch 2:

  1. Open the Google Pixel Watch App: Launch the Pixel Watch app on your smartphone.
  2. Navigate to Safety & Emergency: Tap on “Safety & Emergency” and select “Safety Signal.”
  3. Sign in to Fitbit Account: Follow the on-screen prompts to sign in to your Fitbit account. This step is crucial for activating Safety Signal on your watch.
  4. Activation Process: Please note that activating Safety Signal may take some time, and you may need to restart the process. While it took several attempts for some users, it eventually succeeded. The wait is well worth it for the added peace of mind.

Utilizing Safety Signal: Your Personal Safety Net

Safety Signal is a feature that’s slightly different from the typical offerings on smartwatches. It’s primarily designed for users who have Fitbit Premium and seek access to essential emergency SOS features without the added expense of a separate LTE plan. While it doesn’t provide the full range of features offered by a traditional LTE plan, it focuses on critical safety and emergency features.

Calls and Features

Safety Signal gives South African users the ability to make calls to and receive calls from emergency contacts, access Safety Check, Emergency Sharing, Emergency SOS, and Fall Detection when their smartphone isn’t within reach. This feature is exclusively designed for emergency and personal safety situations.

Phone Numbers and Accessibility

When you enable Safety Signal on your Pixel Watch 2, the app will display your watch’s phone number, which you can share with your emergency contacts. You can also find this information within the Pixel Watch app, under “Safety & Emergency” and “Safety Signal.”

Quick Activation

Upon successful activation, you’ll see a Safety Signal icon and a notification alerting you that the feature is ready to use whenever you’re away from your phone. Google suggests that it may take up to 15 minutes for this feature to become active, but it often activates more quickly, as reported by some users.

Safety Signal is a valuable addition to the Pixel Watch 2, providing users with a convenient and cost-effective means of staying safe and connected, even when their phone is out of reach.


Google’s Pixel Watch 2 has made significant strides in enhancing personal safety for users in South Africa and other regions. Safety Check and Safety Signal are pioneering features that empower wearers with tools to proactively manage their safety in various situations. While Safety Check offers a location-sharing option in case of emergencies, Safety Signal ensures that users have access to essential SOS features without the need for a dedicated LTE plan.

As wearable technology continues to evolve, these features are clear indicators of the tech industry’s commitment to user safety and convenience. South African users of the Pixel Watch 2 can now explore the world with greater peace of mind, knowing that help is just a few taps away on their wrist.



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