The Fossil Group has launched a huge initiative to get smartwatches in front of their customers, by creating 40 new hybrid smartwatches spanning across their brands, including Armani, Diesel, Kate Spade and Michael Kors. The watches, which are all analogue timepieces with smart features, such as fitness tracking and notification alerts, have been individually designed by each brand so that they are all unique from one another.
For example, the Armani smartwatch has a unique sub dial that lets you access a second time-zone, while the Kate Spade smartwatch has a unique sub dial that lets you track your fitness progress, with unique champagne glass markers.
As previously touched upon, all 40 of these smartwatches are dubbed a ‘hybrid’ smartwatch, which is a fancy name for saying that each watch has an analogue dial with some sensors and a Bluetooth chip within. The key benefit to this is that such smartwatches never become obsolete, since they do not have a screen or an operating system. So, while they offer less functionality than a digital smartwatch, they have their place.
Classic design. Next-gen features.
The Fossil Group had each of their brands design their own smartwatch, offering them full control over the design and development stage. However, to make sure that each watch was different, Fossil Group had each brand conduct market research with their own customers. The result is a new line of hybrid smartwatches that look very different from one another, with some interesting features.
These hybrid smartwatches run on a regular coin-cell battery which is user-replaceable, and they have a battery life that’s rated at around 6 months. They also range in case size, from 40mm to 45mm, and in finish; there’s gold and rose gold models, and stainless steel and PVD-coated models to choose from. The most interesting models aesthetically for us are the Diesel models, which have some neat dial features and bold colourways.
When will they go on sale?
These new smartwatches have been launched just in time for Christmas, and join Fossil Group’s Q Founder which was released in 2015. The Q Founder is an Android Wear smartwatch with touchscreen functionality and classic good looks.
All 40 smartwatches will go on sale very soon, and they will be available through each brand’s website, and in-store. It is likely that they will also be available online.