I, for one, was very impressed with Breitling’s “Connected Watch” concept unveiled with its B55 Chronograph Pilot’s watch. I thought it struck the right balance of “connectedness” and “smartness” while not trying to be all things to all consumers. It will be interested to see the approach that is taken with TAG Heuer. I think to try and compete directly with Apple is a mistake. The Swiss brands — at least the luxury ones — must look to differentiate.
Here’s the TAG Heuer / Google / Intel press release:
Baselworld, Switzerland, 19 March 2015 — TAG Heuer, Google, and Intel have announced a partnership to launch a Swiss smartwatch powered by Intel technology and Android Wear. The effort signifies a new era of collaboration between Swiss watchmakers and Silicon Valley, bringing together each company’s respective expertise in luxury watchmaking, software and hardware.
The collaboration was made official at Baselworld, during a press conference held on Thursday 19th March at the TAG Heuer booth. Jean-Claude Biver, President of the Watch Division LVMH Group and CEO of TAG Heuer, David Singleton, Director of Engineering for Android Wear, and Michael Bell, Corporate Vice President and General Manager of Intel’s New Devices Group, joined each other on stage.
Together, these companies will create a product that is both luxurious, and seamlessly connected to its wearer’s daily life—a culmination of innovation, creativity and design from Silicon Valley in California and the Watch Valley in La Chaux-de-Fonds, Switzerland.
“Swiss watchmaking and Silicon Valley is a marriage of technological innovation with watchmaking credibility. Our collaboration provides a rich host of synergies, forming a win-win partnership, and the potential for our three companies is enormous,” said Jean-Claude Biver.
Guy Sémon, General Manager of TAG Heuer added: “The quality of Swiss watches is renowned worldwide. When this is allied with the creative technology and global power of two companies like Intel and Google, using the Android Wear platform and based on Intel technology, we can see the launch of a technological revolution in our industry, of which I am proud to be a pioneer today with TAG Heuer.”
David Singleton noted, “By fusing beauty with technology, the Swiss watch has inspired generations of artists and engineers alike—including us at Google. So we’re thrilled to be working with TAG Heuer and Intel to bring a unique blend of emotion and innovation to the luxury market. Together, and using the Android Wear platform, we can imagine a better, beautiful, smarter watch.”
“As we work to enable technology experiences that provide greater utility and value to people, Intel is confident that a collective approach will inspire new innovation in wearable technology. The collaboration with TAG Heuer and Google brings us closer to realizing the vision of wearable technology with a distinctive smartwatch that elevates the category,” remarked Michael Bell.