Fossil has confirmed that it will be releasing a new premium smartwatch that will take advantage of the upgraded Wear OS. The company also confirmed that unfortunately, existing Fossil smartwatches will not get the upgraded Wear OS.
The upgraded version of Wear OS
During its annual developer conference Google I/O, Google announced ambitious plans to upgrade the Wear OS. It will work on the upgrade in partnership with Samsung and will combine the best of the current Wear OS, Samsung's Tizen OS, and Fitbit software to build a unified smartwatch platform. After Apple, Samsung and Google-owned Fitbit have the highest market share when it comes to smart wearables. It's good news for smartwatch enthusiasts that the experts from these two tech giants will be coming together to create an improved platform. Fossil will release a new premium smartwatch to take advantage of this new platform. However, this OS upgrade will not be released to existing Fossil smartwatches, the most likely reason for this decision is that the existing hardware will not be able to support the full features of the upgraded Wear OS. In an interview with CNET, Senior Vice President of Fossil Group, Steve Prokup said that the 6th Gen premium smartwatch will combine the software benefits that Google's mentioned in its keynote. Prokup also said that the new smartwatch will have significant hardware updates.
Fossil will focus on a single premium offering for its next wave of Google smartwatches. Fossil executives hinted that launching budget-friendly alternatives that work with Wear OS will not be a priority, instead, the company will most likely drop the prices of last year's models. In Q1 of 2019, Fossil accounted for 2.5% of the smartwatch market share.
Google purchased tech from Fossile: Project Diana
In September of 2019, Google had spent $40 million to purchase proprietary technology from Fossil. The technology was meant to be used in hybrid smartwatches. Fossil had an internal project referred to as Diana, a combination of the words digital and analog. The company was working on technology to combine analog watch elements with digital features for use in hybrid watches. Some of these watches would not even feature screens. According to reports, Google's purchase would give the company license to use Diana tech and they would get access to 20 engineers at Fossil. These engineers came to Fossil when they acquired the company Misfit for $260 million in 2015.
What smartwatch brand are you currently using? Are you looking forward to Samsung and Google's unified smartwatch platform? What features would Wear OS bring? Subscribe to Whitepapers.online to stay up to date with the latest information.
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1. Jun 2021, S. Stein, "Fossil is planning a premium Google Wear OS watch for fall", Cnet [available online] available from: https://www.cnet.com/health/fossil-is-planning-a-premium-google-watch-for-fall/ [accessed Jun 2021]
2. May 2019, B. Schoon, "Fossile loses market share in Q1 2019, bad sign for Wear OS", 9to5 Google, [available online] available from: https://9to5google.com/2019/05/02/fossil-market-share-q1-2019-wear-os/ [accessed Jun 2021]