The smartwatch world is getting more crowded by the day, as fashion company Fossil is now getting into the mix. At the Intel Developer Forum, the company provided a sneak peak of its upcoming Android Wear smartwatch, due out in time for this holiday season.
Fossil's Android Wear watch looks like most other smartwatches we've seen debut recently - it has a circular face with a metal body and standard leather straps. If you were to look at the watch from its underside, you could mistake it for a large, traditional timepiece. The watchface has a bold, bright display to show off notifications, emails and fitness data. One thing to note is that the Fossil smartwatch has that same black bar on the bottom of the display that the Moto 360 has, which is not ideal.
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This collaboration makes sense for all parties involved: Fossil has had tech aspirations for a while. It partnered with Microsoft back in 2004 to create a SPOT watch, which used FM radio waves to transmit news, weather and MSN Messenger information to the watch's monochrome display. Those efforts died in 2008, but now we are seeing a smartwatch revival.
As for Intel, the more devices powered by the company's chips, the better. We don't know much about the Fossil smartwatch yet, but we do know that it will run an Intel SoC. Earlier this year, Intel announced that its tech would also power Tag Heuer's luxury Android Wear smartwatch, due out before the end of 2015.
Google stands to gain a lot from this partnership, no matter how many Fossil smartwatches actually sell. Simply slapping the Fossil name on an otherwise generic Android Wear watch could help the Android Wear name gain traction among young, fashion-forward consumers. While both Google and Apple are household names, it's likely that the Apple Watch is the only smartwatch known by a wide range of consumers.
It also helps that Fossil is considered an "accessible luxury" brand. Most Android Wear smartwatches are priced between $300 and $350, while the most expensive Fossil watch is currently $285. If Fossil casts its net wide rather than high with its pricing, it could be enough to persuade tech-savvy fashionistas to give the new smartwatch a try.