Tag Heuer specifically targets Apple with new luxury smart watch

At the international Baselworld watch and jewelry show in Switzerland, Tag Heuer’s CEO announced it would be releasing a smart watch with partners Google and Intel.

Keystone, Georgios Kefalas
Visitors pass the Tag Heuer booth, at the watch and jewelry show Baselworld in Basel, Switzerland.

Looking to keep up with the times, Swiss luxury watchmaker Tag Heuer announced Thursday its partnership with Google and Intel to create an Android-powered smart watch.

At the international Baselworld watch and jewelry show in Switzerland, Tag Heuer chief executive officer Jean-Claude Biver revealed that the company plans on releasing its version of a wearable device by "end of the year," but gave few additional details about the high-tech timepiece.

According to Bloomberg, Mr. Biver calls the new venture the "biggest announcement ever" of his 40-year career in the industry and predicts it will be the "greatest connected watch."

"When I think about the watch, it's always been a marriage of beauty and utility," said David Singleton, head of Android Wear development for Google. "We're going to do that with our partnership."

Each company says it will stick with what it does best: Tag Heuer will lead the design and manufacturing, Intel will provide the computer chips, and Google will help develop software with its Android Wear Platform.

Tag Heuer’s announcement comes on the heels of Apple unveiling of its own 18-karat gold, luxury smart watch, the Apple Watch Edition, which ranges from $10,000 to $17,000.

"The difference between the Apple Watch and the Tag Heuer watch is very important,” Biver said at a press conference. “One is called Apple and one is called Tag Heuer."  

Details of the smart watch, including price and functions, will not be revealed until its release, but consumers should expect to see a lot more wearable tech coming out of Switzerland.

"Tag Heuer’s decision to partner with technology companies to deliver a smartwatch ... will likely be the first of many similar deals," Ben Wood, chief of research at CCS Insight, said to Reuters. "With Apple Watch hitting the market it's no longer viable for Swiss watchmakers to bury their heads in the sand. Now Tag Heuer has signaled its intention to enter the smart watch market we are certain others will follow."

of stories this month > Get unlimited stories
You've read  of  free articles. Subscribe to continue.

Unlimited digital access $11/month.

Get unlimited Monitor journalism.