Rumors about a Pixel Watch have abounded for years. Such a device would certainly make sense as Google attempts to prove the viability of its struggling wearable operating system, Wear OS. Seems the company is finally getting serious about the prospect. Today Fossil announced plans to sell its smartwatch IP to the software giant for $40 million.
Sounds like Google will be getting a nice head start here as well. The deal pertains to “a smartwatch technology currently under development” and involves the transfer of a number of Fossil employees to team Google.
Wear OS is definitely struggling, but it sure isn’t because of lack of trying from Fossil. The company has been churning out a whole wide variety of Wear OS devices, and they offer enough choice in design that anyone can find something they like – at acceptable price points, too.
Sadly, like any other Wear OS OEM, they’re held back by a lack of acceptable silicon, since Qualcomm has been unable to deliver a chip that’s even remotely as good as Apple’s wearable SoC.
Perhaps Google’s stewardship can address this problem.
Sign of desperation too save a dying platform. It feels very similar to Microsoft buying Nokia. The platform wasnt getting traction, and their biggest name was thinking of jumping ship, so they simply bought the business (ok, this was far cheaper than Nokia). If the platform was sustainable, Fossil would want to hold on to it.
Google’s stewardship cannot address the problem because Google doesn’t make smartwatch SoCs
As the commenter above said, this a desperation move on Google’s part, basically making sure their biggest hardware partner doesn’t jump ship so the platform isn’t in danger of being left hardware-less.
BTW, who names their smartwatch “Fossil”? I mean, the 1st-gen Moto360 was certainly worthy of the title, with its ancient SoC and all, but Motorola wasn’t dumb enough to put the word “Fossil” in the brand-name.