Menu
Swatch smartwatch to go on sale in two countries

Swatch smartwatch to go on sale in two countries

The watch will have an NFC chip to allow mobile payments

The Swatch One Touch is the watchmaker's first fitness tracker and will come out in August.

The Swatch One Touch is the watchmaker's first fitness tracker and will come out in August.

Swatch, the Swiss watchmaker known for its colorful products, will launch its smartwatch in two countries, entering a crowded space that includes tech heavyweights Apple and Google.

The watch will launch in Switzerland and another large country in next three months, Swatch CEO Nick Hayek said during a company meeting, the Wall Street Journal reported Thursday.

Hayek didn't offer more information on the second nation, although Swatch has payment deals with China UnionPay, a Chinese bank card group. Swatch also set up partnerships with an unnamed Swiss bank and large credit card company, according to earlier comments from Hayek.

As previously reported, the watch will use an NFC (near field communication) chip to enable mobile payments.

Since announcing its smartwatch ambitions in February, Swatch has been mum on the details. Information like what OS the device will run, its price and battery life haven't been made available. Swatch didn't immediately reply to a request for comment. Hayek has previously said the smartwatch will work with Windows and Android software.

Swatch was a reluctant and late entry into the wearables market. Two years ago Hayek dismissed the impact smartwatches would have on the watch industry, saying the devices wouldn't be as revolutionary as predicted. Even last year Hayek questioned consumer interest in devices with small screens that required frequent charging.

Since then, Hayek has changed his opinion on smart devices. In February, Swatch announced that it was developing a smartwatch and, separately, adding fitness-tracking features for volleyball players to an upcoming version of the Touch, a digital watch that uses a touchscreen instead of buttons to control functions. The watch, the Touch Zero One, will have a touchscreen and monitor steps taken, calories burned and volleyball maneuvers. This data will be sent to an accompanying smartphone app that rates a person's volleyball skills. The Touch Zero One will go on sale in August, Hayek said Thursday, according to Reuters.

Swatch faces a formidable competitor in Apple, which has had strong sales of its first smartwatch since it became available in April. Google is also looking to claim a piece of the wearables market with its Android Wear software and may announce plans for the platform during its developers conference on Thursday.

Fred O'Connor writes about IT careers and health IT for The IDG News Service. Follow Fred on Twitter at @fredjoconnor. Fred's e-mail address is fred_o'connor@idg.com


Follow Us

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags consumer electronicsSwatch

Featured

Slideshows

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel

Reseller News honoured the leading female front runners of the New Zealand channel at the 2018 Women in ICT Awards (WIICTA) in Auckland. The awards honoured standout individuals across seven categories, spanning Entrepreneur; Innovation; Rising Star; Shining Star; Community; Technical and Achievement.

Meet the leading female front runners of the Kiwi channel
Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners

Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners

Microsoft honoured leading partners across the channel following a year of customer innovation and market growth in New Zealand. The 2018 Microsoft Partner Awards recognised excellence within the context of the end-user, spanning a host of emerging and established providers.

Meet the top performing customer-centric Microsoft channel partners
Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch

Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch

Introducing the Reseller News Innovation Awards, launched to the channel at the 2018 Judges’ Lunch in Auckland. With more than 70 judges now part of the voting panel, the new-look awards will reflect the changing dynamics of the channel, recognising excellence across customer value and innovation - spanning start-ups, partners, distributors and vendors.

Reseller News launches new-look Awards at 2018 Judges’ Lunch
Show Comments