For the last year or so, the smartwatch game has been an exclusive market. All the main players on the scene have come from tech companies who downsized their technology to fit onto your wrist. However, all of this is seemingly about to change. Fossil, a fashion company well known for its designer watches has recently announced their intentions to enter the smartwatch market with their own ideas. Announced at the Intel Developer Forum, Fossil showed off their design which closely resembled the Moto 360, taking a few styling ques from its Lenovo-owned counterpart including the black bar at the bottom of the round-face screen and the round metal “digital crown”. Fossil cared to divulge little information on the device itself, only mentioning that the device was running Android Wear and is powered by Intel innards, as well as that non-Android devices were in the pipeline. The announcement was closed off with a note that the device should be reaching the mass markets around October without a word on pricing and regional availability.
For me personally, this is more than an interesting announcement. It is a statement of intent for traditional styling powerhouses houses fighting the onslaught of technology into modern fashion. The likes of the Apple Watch have become almost a fashion statement in itself, and developments such as the rose gold iPhone further cement the importance of technology within fashion, with each new generation trying to become more stylish than the previous. It shall be a great motivational tool for tech companies to face the likes of Fossil, Tissot and Michael Kors amongst many others which shall approach the smartwatch from a different angle completely. The effects of this can already be seen. A comparison between the first and second generation of the Samsung Gear would suggest that the two devices were headed up by two completely different people. The first was designed by an engineer, looking at practicality and features over styling, whereas the second was a lot more collaboratively designed with a fashion designer as can be seen with the much more ergonomic design. All in all, this was a great announcement to befall the smartwatch market. Competition is a healthy thing, and should result in an improvement across the board.