Google is buying mysterious smartwatch tech from The Fossil Group for $40 million

Kate Spade Scallop 2 Smartwatch

The Fossil Group, which owns and partners with brands like Misfit, Fossil, and Kate Spade to create smartwatches and other accessories, has agreed to sell select smartwatch technology to Google for $40 million. The research and development team behind this intellectual property from the Fossil Group is also joining Google as a part of the transaction.

It’s currently unclear what kind of technology is being sold here. According to a statement from Fossil, the company has built a technology that “has the potential to improve upon its existing platform of smartwatches,” which is pretty vague. What all of this likely means is if Google decides to launch a new smartwatch, it could house this technology inside — which quite possibly hasn’t been seen in any other device at the moment. A report from Wareable notes that the tech has evolved from Fossil’s acquisition of Misfit.

“It’s based on something out of our timeline, it’s new to the market technology and we think it’s a product that has features and benefits that aren’t in the category today,” said Greg McKelvey, EVP and chief strategy and digital officer at Fossil, in the Wareable report.

“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,” Stacey Burr, vice president of Product Management for Wear OS by Google, said in a statement. “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.”

According to the two companies, the deal is expected to close by the end of the month.

Google has been rumored to be working on a so-called “Pixel Watch” for some time now. Google confirmed it would not launch the product in 2018, which makes the possibility of launching the watch in 2019 likely. This will most likely happen in October, alongside the rest of its hardware launches.

It’s important to note that the Fossil Group isn’t selling its smartwatch division to Google. Fossil and the rest of its partners will continue releasing smartwatches powered by Google’s Wear OS in the future. The last major release from Fossil was the Fossil Sport, whereas at CES 2019, Kate Spade launched the Scallop 2 smartwatch.

Another big result of this acquisition is Google’s ability to provide this mysterious technology to all manufacturers that want to use the Wear OS smartwatch platform, instead of keeping it to watches made by the Fossil Group.

Product Review

The Galaxy Watch Active is the right size for you, no matter how big or small your wrist is

Launched among a massive array of other new products, the Samsung Galaxy Watch Active could easily have been missed at Galaxy Unpacked 2019 -- which would be unfortunate. This is a sensibly designed, correctly sized smartwatch suitable for…
Deals

It’s time to check out the best Apple Watch deals for February 2019

The Apple Watch has surged to prominence in recent years. If you're in the market for an iOS wearable, we've sniffed out the best Apple Watch deals available right now for all three models of this great smartwatch.
Mobile

Smartwatch sales soared in 2018, with Apple leading the charge

The NPD Group, a market research organization, has reported smartwatch sales soared in 2018. Apple is leading the charge, but it's clear there's still room in the market for competitors, as Samsung and Fitbit also did well.
Deals

Make some time for the best smartwatch deals for February 2019

Smartwatches make your life easier by sending alerts right on your wrist. Many also provide fitness-tracking features. So if you're ready to take the plunge into wearables and want to save money, read on for the best smartwatch deals.
Mobile

Verizon wants you to lobby the government for 5G deployment

Verizon is in the midst of a massive 5G rollout. In addition to fixed 5G service, it will also begin deploying mobile 5G in the coming months. Here's everything you need to know about Verizon's 5G network and when it will be in your town.
Business

Apple loses battle to use Intel modems in Germany in latest clash with Qualcomm

Apple is following the Federal Trade Commission's lead and has sued Qualcomm for a massive $1 billion in the U.S., $145 million in China, and also in the U.K., claiming the company charged onerous royalties for its patented tech.
Mobile

Happy Valentine’s Day! Coffee Meets Bagel dating app data may have been breached

Are you planning on using Coffee Meets Bagel to find love on Valentine's Day? If you've been using the app for a while, you'll probably want to change your password -- the company said a data breach may have taken place before May 2018.
Computing

Breaking: Amazon won’t build headquarters in New York in face of opposition

Amazon has canceled plans for a New York City headquarters afer citizens, civic groups, and politicians pushed back on Governor Andrew Cuomo and New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio's exclamation of economic joy over Amazon's earlier…
Business

Cruise like Mick Jagger: Virgin Voyage’s new ship boasts RockStar Suites

Virgin Voyages, the new cruise company from the Virgin Group, is now taking reservations for the 2020 inaugural season. The ship's RockStar Suites are designed to help travelers feel like rock stars, going beyond the usual cruise luxuries.
Home Theater

Samsung will stop releasing new Blu-ray players in the U.S.

Samsung, the first company to produce a 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray player, is now exiting the Blu-ray market entirely in the U.S. The move comes after Oppo Digital also dropped out of the market last year.
Business

Alita: Battle Angel’s big opening weekend leads weak holiday box office

New box-office champion Alita: Battle Angel outperformed expectations with its big premiere and positive reviews from critics, but Presidents' Day weekend is still off to a slow start.
Business

Marriott asking guests for data to see if they were victims of the Starwood hack

Marriott has created an online form to help you find out if your data was stolen in the massive Starwood hack that came to light toward the end of 2018. But take note, it requires you to submit a bunch of personal details.
Business

Can Amazon deliver on plan to slash carbon footprint of shipments?

Amazon has announced an ambitious plan to halve its shipment carbon footprint by 2030. The company says improvements in electric vehicles, aviation bio fuels, reusable packaging, and renewable energy make the goal reachable.
Mobile

Need speed? Qualcomm unveils the Snapdragon X55, the world’s fastest 5G modem

Qualcomm is preparing for an even faster future: The silicon giant just unveiled a second generation 5G modem for smartphones, promising blistering download speeds as high as 7Gbps.