After failing to secure any major hardware wins with its mobile processors, Intel is shifting focus to the wearable segment by announcing a collaboration with watchmaker Fossil. Although details on any upcoming products were divulged it is likely that Intel will be leveraging wearable technology from Basis, a wearable technology manufacturer that Intel acquired earlier this year.
The wearable market itself is in its nascent stages, and although we saw a flurry of new device staunches at the IFA earlier this week, manufacturers are tinkering away at new form factors, like Samsung has with the Gear VR. In the smartwatch segment, the South Korean vendor recently unveiled the Gear S, a Tizen-based smartwatch that has a SIM-card slot for standalone connectivity. Meanwhile, other vendors like Motorola and LG have focused their attention on design, with the Moto 360 and G Watch R featuring a more traditional watch design.
A collaboration with Fossil isn’t Intel’s first entry into the wearable segment, as the hardware vendor announced a high-end smart bracelet earlier this week. Set to debut later this year, Intel’s smart bracelet is set to cost in the vicinity of $1,000. With the bracelet, Intel is looking to fuse high-end fashion with wearable technology, although it isn’t the first time both industries have collaborated — Google teamed up with designed Diane von Furstenberg in launching a more stylised version of Google Glass earlier this year.
Intel’s collaboration with Fossil is more indicative of a general trend in the wearable segment, one that is seeing more and more manufacturers looking to the fashion industry for new ideas. The oft-rumored iWatch is set to debut next week, and it should be interesting to see the features it offers.
As for Intel’s offerings in this segment, we should be hearing more about the vendor’s plans at the Intel Developer Forum, which is being held next week in San Francisco.