For Google, Fossil's Smartwatch Technology an Opportunity to Compete
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For Google, Fossil's Smartwatch Technology an Opportunity to Compete

By IndraStra Global News Team

Image Attribute: File photo of Fossil Q Founder smartwatch / Source: Digital Trends

Image Attribute: File photo of Fossil Q Founder smartwatch / Source: Digital Trends

On January 17, 2019, Google announced an acquisition deal through which it will acquire Fossil Group's intellectual property (IP) related to a smartwatch technology currently under development. 

As part of the transaction, "a portion of Fossil Group’s research and development (R&D) team currently supporting the transferring IP will join Google. Fossil Group retains more than 200 R&D team members to focus on innovation and product development." The deal is worth roughly US$ 40 million for the global search giant. 

"Fossil Group has experienced significant success in its wearables business by focusing on product design and development informed by our strong understanding of consumers’ needs and style preferences," said Greg McKelvey, Executive Vice President and Chief Strategy and Digital Officer, Fossil Group. "We’ve built and advanced a technology that has the potential to improve upon our existing platform of smartwatches. Together with Google, our innovation partner, we’ll continue to unlock growth in wearables."

"Wearables, built for wellness, simplicity, personalization and helpfulness, have the opportunity to improve lives by bringing users the information and insights they need quickly, at a glance. The addition of Fossil Group’s technology and team to Google demonstrates our commitment to the wearables industry by enabling a diverse portfolio of smartwatches and supporting the ever-evolving needs of the vitality-seeking, on-the-go consumer," said Stacey Burr, Vice President of Product Management, Wear OS by Google.

In recent years, Fossil Group’s fastest-growing category are the smartwatches. It moved into smartwatches in 2015 with a US$ 260 million acquisition of Misfit, a tech platform created by former Microsoft researcher Sonny Vu and onetime Apple chief executive John Sculley. Since, then the company successfully developed and launched smartwatches across 14 of its owned and licensed brands.

This particular acquisition is considered as an opportunity for Google - to create its own branded smartwatches and compete against Apple, Fitbit, and others in the wearable tech space.