Fossil uses Google’s Wear OS as a platform for its smartwatches, but there is other technology baked into the smart devices to help them stand out.
And now Google wants a piece of that, as it has been confirmed that Google will pay out $40 million towards the IP related to Fossil’s technology, which it has been developing ever since Fossil acquired the Misfit brand back in 2015 (for an estimated $260 million). Fossil’s Research and Development team will be joining Google as part of the deal, and it will work towards a “new product innovation that’s not yet hit the market”.
“It’s based on something out of our timeline, it’s new to the market technology and we think it’s a product that has features and benefits that aren’t in the category today.”
Google’s purchase of the IP is expected to be finalized sometime in January. After that, it will only be a matter of time before whatever Google is working on, which will apparently disrupt the smartwatch market in some form or another, sees the light of day. The company is working on “finishing off” development of “the product”, but there’s no word on what that is or when we’ll actually see it.
“Right now we’re focused on finishing off development of the product,” he explained. “The Fossil Group will bring the product to market, across our full breadth of brands over time, and then in true Google fashion, the technology will be expanded across the industry over time to benefit all.”
Most importantly, Google is apparently not planning on hoarding this technology for its own products. There has been a rumor that Google was working on its own smartwatch, a Pixel smartwatch so to speak, but this particular announcement is not a sign that device is on the way. Rather, Google plans on making sure this technology is available to a wide assortment of devices in the future.
So, Google’s going big in the smartwatch market now. It has been trying to get Wear OS (known as Android Wear before that) for quite some time, but has struggled to really compete against the Apple Watch. Whatever this new development is, Google (and Fossil) are obviously very excited about it.
How do you think Google can compete against Apple in this market?