Tag Heuer unveiled its first smartwatch last November. The Tag Heuer Connected Watch was developed in partnership with Google and Intel. CEO Jean-Claude Biver yesterday told The Australian Financial Review in an interview that things could have played out very differently though. At a time that neither had released a smartwatch yet, Tag Heuer reached out to Apple about developing a connected watch together.
As we all know, Apple went at it alone, unveiling the Apple Watch in March 2015 and taking the smartwatch market by storm shortly after. “They wanted to do their own. As they were not ready, we said we had to be with the best – for the micro-processor, Intel; for the software, Google,” explained Biver. The decision does not appear to have been a bad one as the company recently announced that it would increase production to meet customer demand.
Tag Heuer had “no choice” but to jump into the smartwatch business. While the company will not stop offering luxury traditional timepieces, Biver recognizes that it also needs to offer connected devices that appeal to a younger audience. “Why should they buy a watch for a $1000 that tells them the hour, minute, second and the date when they can have, for the same price – or even half, a connected watch that connects them to all their universe?” he explained.
Biver also thinks that it’s early days for smartwatches. Currently in what he describes “the Stone Age,” he expects that they will look very different in the near future thanks to “developments that will be incredible.”
As for the lost opportunity to partner with Apple, Biver does not admit to any regrets. “I don’t regret we couldn’t do it with Apple – it gives us greater possibilities to develop our own connected watches,” he said.
What do you think an Apple-Tag Heuer smarwatch would have looked like? Let us know below.
Source : The Australian Financial Review