Android Wear is about to jump into the luxury smartwatch market. Baselworld 2015 kicked off today with Tag Heuer announcing that it will partner with Google and Intel to develop its first ever smartwatch. In a somewhat surprising move, it will be powered by Google’s Android Wear platform, likely making it the first ever Android Wear-powered Swiss smartwatch when it launches.
“Swiss watchmaking and Silicon Valley is a marriage of technological innovation with watchmaking credibility. Our collaboration provides a rich host of synergies, forming a win-win partnership, and the potential for our three companies is enormous,”said Jean-Claude Biver.
Guy Sémon, General Manager of TAG Heuer added: “The quality of Swiss watches is renowned worldwide. When this is allied with the creative technology and global power of two companies like Intel and Google, using the Android Wear platform and based on Intel technology, we can see the launch of a technological revolution in our industry, of which I am proud to be a pioneer today with TAG Heuer.”
Details about the Tag Heuer smartwatch itself are slim at this point. It does not even have a name at this point. Reuters reports that it will look very similar to the Tag Heuer Carrera. Much as other smartwatches do, it will provide an array of functions such as activity tracking and notifications. Intel’s contribution will be on the hardware side.
Biver did confirm that the Tag Heuer smartwatch would be assembled in Switzerland. Components such as the case, dial and crown will all be built in Switzerland to allow the company to meet the the requirements to allow it to label the watch as “Swiss Made.”
In an interview, Biver added that, “People will have the impression that they are wearing a normal watch.” He also could not resist a swipe at the Apple Watch, saying, “Apple will get young people used to wearing a watch and later maybe they will want to buy themselves a real watch.”
The Tag Heuer smartwatch will be formally unveiled next autumn. Expect pricing to be revealed closer or at launch.