Linked by Thom Holwerda on Sat 18th Mar 2017 00:51 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless

Swatch Group AG said it's developing an alternative to the iOS and Android operating systems for smartwatches as Switzerland's largest maker of timepieces vies with Silicon Valley for control of consumers' wrists.

The company's Tissot brand will introduce a model around the end of 2018 that uses the Swiss-made system, which will also be able to connect small objects and wearables, Swatch Chief Executive Officer Nick Hayek said in an interview Thursday. The technology will need less battery power and it will protect data better, he said later at a press conference.

It makes sense. Unlike as on smartphones or PCs, I don't think people really want applications on smartwatches. Notifications and fitness - that's what seems to define the (admittedly, limited) appeal of smartwatches. There's no reason why a traditional watchmaker wouldn't be able to provide such limited functionality in a robust way, possibly providing anything from watches that are all-screen to mechanical watches with more limited 'smart' additions.

With Wear 2.0 effectively being fake news at this point, where else is Swatch going to turn to?

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Power
by bugjacobs on Sun 19th Mar 2017 02:32 UTC
bugjacobs
Member since:
2009-01-03

The power requirements of for ex. Apple Watch are ridiculous ... If they can find some smart features to put on a watch that has atleast 14-30 days batterytime, they will have a winner compared to Apple/Samsung.
Maybe one thing is a simple tie-in to the smartphone (android/ios), automatic alerts for mail/sms etc when the phone is in range etc. Automatic sync of health data to the phone. (?) for ex.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Power
by ianm on Sun 19th Mar 2017 21:31 UTC in reply to "Power"
ianm Member since:
2010-08-16

Of all the objections to smart watches, having to charge it every day is the most idiotic thing to make a fuss about. Aside from the small group of neckbeards who wear their watch in the shower, or just don't shower that often, it's not much of a burden to take your watch off at night and set it on the charger. The new Zenwatch picks up enough charge for a day in 15 minutes.

Stop bitching about this idiotic non-problem.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Power
by flanque on Sun 19th Mar 2017 22:09 UTC in reply to "RE: Power"
flanque Member since:
2005-12-15

Wow..

The claims are perfectly valid. The last thing I want to be doing is having to charge my watch on a daily basis. I don't wear my FitBit in the shower, but I do at night to track my sleep.. and even the 5ish days of charge live is a pain in the rear.

Reply Score: 3

v RE[3]: Power
by ianm on Mon 20th Mar 2017 01:27 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Power"
RE[4]: Power
by leech on Mon 20th Mar 2017 03:09 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Power"
leech Member since:
2006-01-10

Perfectly valid complaint. I generally take a 15-20m shower, and my watch (Gear S2) won't charge to 100% that fast, and lasts (depending on my watch face for the day) anywhere from between 8am to 1am, to 8am to 7pm... so I can't even get a full 24 hours out of it.

Not to mention non-swappable batteries, so in 2 years I'm forced to buy another 300 dollar watch?

Reply Score: 4

RE[5]: Power
by ianm on Mon 20th Mar 2017 12:13 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Power"
ianm Member since:
2010-08-16

My last Motorola flip phone last 5 days between charges. By your idiotic argument, my Android smartphone that sometimes needs a charge in the middle of the day but does a million more things isn't as good as a flip phone.

Fitbits are single purpose garbage that most people lose interest in in 2 to 3 months. Sure, they take weeks to run out of battery on the nightstand, but who cares?

Enjoy your useless flip phone.

Reply Score: 0

RE[6]: Power
by flanque on Mon 20th Mar 2017 22:26 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Power"
flanque Member since:
2005-12-15

Fitbits are single purpose garbage that most people lose interest in in 2 to 3 months. Sure, they take weeks to run out of battery on the nightstand, but who cares?

Been using mine for two years now and have zero interest in changing.

It's a watch, it tells the time.. and so happens to track walking, heart rate, distance, etc. and tells me who's calling.. so it's actually multi-purpose.

It doesn't last weeks.. it lasts about a week.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Power
by SWC01 on Mon 20th Mar 2017 10:21 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Power"
SWC01 Member since:
2012-05-31

Be careful with that, using a charger in the shower can cause serious injury.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Power
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Mon 20th Mar 2017 15:09 UTC in reply to "RE: Power"
Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Hmm, its a bit annoying, but maybe that would work if I could recharge it in 15 min.

I really want to have a smart watch that silently can wake me up via vibration for notifications from specific apps. So night time wearing is a definite requirement.

Still I think the battery life complaints are completely valid. Some watches I've heard don't make a whole day, even with the screen turned off most of the time.

I think they'll turn a corner most watches get closer to full day with screen fully on.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Power
by ianm on Mon 20th Mar 2017 18:33 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Power"
ianm Member since:
2010-08-16

My Zenwatch 2 gives me about 40 hours service with the screen on full time if I don't charge it every night, which I do...

Reply Score: 1

RE[4]: Power
by bugjacobs on Wed 22nd Mar 2017 23:01 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Power"
bugjacobs Member since:
2009-01-03

Good luck if you dont burn down the house in the end, charging at night ... >:-P

Reply Score: 1

connect to small objects and devices?
by shotsman on Sun 19th Mar 2017 08:58 UTC
shotsman
Member since:
2005-07-22

That will make the thing a lot more complicated than it needs to be.
That will increase battery use.

Then these devices... If they already exist then then thay may well be Insecure IoT crap. That could compromise the watch.

All this make me want to question the whole thing. Why?
I can understand them wanting to compete with things like the apple Watch but I just don't get this as being a viable solution. It is just a 'me too' move?
I guess that we may get to know more by the time the end of 2018 comes around but it may well be a case of too little, far too late.

Reply Score: 2

No it isnt Member since:
2005-11-14

No.

It won't be always-on WLAN on 3G (that would kill the battery in no time), it will connect to your smartphone via Bluetooth, either periodically or when you tell it to. Just like Fitbit and the rest of them.

Yes, it's a me-too move, and not taking the jump would easily kill Swatch within a few years.

Reply Score: 2

Mistakes
by MysterMask on Sun 19th Mar 2017 09:33 UTC
MysterMask
Member since:
2005-07-12


I don't think people really want applications on smartwatches.


*LOL*
(You sound a lot like Steve Balmer. Neither were people looking for applications on their "walk mans", "cell phones", etc.)

Of course they want. It's just that the current implementation is not good enough for the broad masses. But there are already a lot of niche applications in use.


Thinking about those gadget in "watch form factor" as "watches" is misleading. That's why Swatch will fail - they are not able to think "outside of the box". At best, the can protect their traditional markets of low cost watches.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Mistakes
by unclefester on Sun 19th Mar 2017 11:38 UTC in reply to "Mistakes"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

At best, the can protect their traditional markets of low cost watches.


Swatch AG owns many of the premium and luxury Swiss watch brands: eg. Breguet, Harry Winston, Blancpain, Glashütte Original, Jaquet Droz, Léon Hatot, Omega, Longines, Rado, Union Glashütte, Tissot, Balmain, Certina, Mido, Hamilton, and Calvin Klein.

Some of these brands cheapest models are over USD10,000

Edited 2017-03-19 11:39 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Mistakes
by puenktchen on Mon 20th Mar 2017 10:30 UTC in reply to "RE: Mistakes"
puenktchen Member since:
2007-07-27

Glashütte Original isn't a Swiss but a German brand. But definitely not low cost either.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Mistakes
by unclefester on Mon 20th Mar 2017 11:45 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Mistakes"
unclefester Member since:
2007-01-13

Glashütte Original isn't a Swiss but a German brand. But definitely not low cost either.


Swiss watches actually had a terrible reputation prior to WW2. They mostly concentrated on the absolute bottom end of the market (below Timex).

Edited 2017-03-20 11:49 UTC

Reply Score: 2

"smart" devices aren't so smart
by ezraz on Mon 20th Mar 2017 13:01 UTC
ezraz
Member since:
2012-06-20

feature creep has hit every electronic device.

people don't "want" their apps on their wrists, they just want easier notifications, a stopwatch, a fitness computer, and traditionally like to tell time with something on their wrists.

to me - purposefully built gadgets, with limited functionality, could be the way of the future. it's the only way you get them to keep their relevance beyond 16 months.

any device you try to pack everything into is inherently going to fail over time, unless you have a huge budget (ala apple) to maintain that product and platform for a decade or more, and even then it will cease to function as designed since it was so complicated and relied on so many outside entities to function.

http://wfnk.com/blog/2017/02/dumb-vs-smart/

Edited 2017-03-20 13:03 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Charging argument
by Kancept on Mon 20th Mar 2017 14:33 UTC
Kancept
Member since:
2006-01-09

Not everyone is at home or near a charger all the time. Charging time & battery life are very valid arguments. Next thing you all will argue is that if you aren't near a charger or are outdoors, get a dumb watch. Don't need to keep a few watches on me in case my plans change and I don't go home first, thanks.

This is all really first gen iterative stuff, though.

Reply Score: 2

Comment by FlyingJester
by FlyingJester on Tue 21st Mar 2017 17:52 UTC
FlyingJester
Member since:
2016-05-11

I for one am very excited for The Chronicles of Xena: Air in the Distance, on the Ninvento Swatch.

Reply Score: 2