Swatch Group isn’t entering the smartwatch world with a one-off stint, rather the Swiss watchmaking giant plans to launch multiple smartwatches, but they will be simple. Swatch CEO Nick Hayek gave his open, candid opinion to Tages Anzeiger, the Swiss daily paper, a couple of days ago.
Let’s not forget that this won’t be their first watch of its king. Swatch launched Paparazzi watch with Microsoft in 2003 and Access watches, which were launched back in 1996. But Hayek says people actually want the wristwatch for it being a watch first and then anything else:
People want to buy watches first and foremost because of the emotions they convey. Look at what’s happening here in our shop in Interlaken. We sell 1000 watches and more per day over the counter.
The company will release NFC-equipped, payment-capable watches later this year. That means Swatch won’t be challenging the likes of Apple Watch, Pebble or Android Wear. Hayek isn’t interested in a wrist –based computer because “the all-rounders eat too much power”.
When mobile phones first entered the market with a clock on the screen, the so-called industry experts said it was the end of Swatch and mechanical watches. The opposite was the case. We make watches, not computers for the wrist. Even after the launch of the Samsung, Sony and Apple smartwatches, this computer watch doesn’t play a significant role. The big battles are fought in smartphone sales. The Apple Watch is an interesting toy, but not a revolution. We, however, sell a product that is fun, yet doesn’t claim to do everything. It is first and foremost a wristwatch.
Apparently, Nick is also not interested in venturing into health and fitness tracking and you’re more likely to see simple, focused devices that just happen to do more than tell the time.
Out smartwatch, we’ll launch later this year, will have an alternative to credit card [NFC]. The technology works, we just need to fix some minor things with our partners from the credit card industry. It’s the health and medical sector we are guaranteed not to penetrate. I can’t take responsibility for my device to give customers an early warning of a heart attack.
Source: Tages Anzeiger