Get ready for another app. Watchmaker Swatch Group is electing to develop its own smartwatch OS over Google’s Android Wear. CEO Nick Hayek explained the move in an interview with Bloomberg.
“There’s a possibility for wearables to develop as a consumer product, but you have to miniaturize and have an independent operating system.” Ok, it sounds like Swatch is convincing itself. Give us the benefits.
The big one is it will “need less battery power” – that’s not a subtle jab at Apple at all. And it will “protect data better.” Right. Because when everyone thinks data security, we immediately make the leap to smartwatches. It’s also why I tape over my microwave. Damn wiretaps. I mean ‘wiretaps.’
Swatch is targeting late 2018 for the software which will be featured in a Tissot-branded watch. Hayek is looking to establish Swatch’s OS as an alternative to Google Android Wear. So far, the company has fielded “over 100 requests” for more information and potential licensing of the OS.
Will it be enough to dethrone Android Wear and Apple? No. Swatch isn’t after deluging you with smart, actionable notifications. Apps can barely get it right. But those in the market for a Swatch. Tissot or Omega and want simple notifications and badass battery life may be in luck come late next year.
It’s a snub at Google, but they do have Tag Heuer for people needing a bit of luxury on their wrist. Apple has, well, Apple.
Swatch is one to watch. It’s not Pebble and has the clout in the industry to make it a three-company race in the smartwatch race. Or at the very least, no one will know about the missed steps. Your secret is safe with them.