Report: Google Acquired Hybrid Smartwatch Tech in $40 Million Fossil Deal

Fossil and Google introduced a $40 million deal earlier this 12 months for a mysterious and unnamed smartwatch know-how that Google will presumably use in an upcoming smartwatch. Based on a brand new report, Google could have gotten somewhat greater than mental property within the deal — and Fossil could have ended up with the brief finish of the stick.

The report comes from Wareable, and notes that the deal was for a hybrid smartwatch know-how developed by Fossil, which was referred to internally as “Diana.” The tech was constructed by expertise that Fossil acquired by means of its Misfit buyout in 2015, and reportedly mixed some bodily watch parts with digital ones.

Alongside that tech, nevertheless, Google additionally ended up with round 20 engineers — and in response to Wareables sources, Google was somewhat extra within the expertise than the mental property. That makes the deal extra of an “acqui-hire” than a straight-up acquisition of Fossil tech.

Fossil reportedly felt pressured to promote the tech and engineers to Google due to the big bills related to retaining the engineering expertise. It additionally felt stress to recoup the price of creating its personal hybrid smartwatches, like Diana, which reportedly got here at a excessive worth for Fossil.

The report additionally highlights some missteps that Fossil could have made in its Misfit acquisition. Apparently, tensions rose between the Misfit expertise and Fossil expertise as a result of the corporate underestimated how a lot it must pay to help the Misfit tech workforce — and shortly discovered itself paying out excessive salaries to the brand new staff. Not solely that, however the two firms reportedly had very completely different approaches to wearable tech — whereas Fossil positioned extra of an emphasis on design, the Misfit workforce was extra centered on utilizing advertising information to create new income streams. Because of this, talks between Fossil and Google began, and the aforementioned 20 engineers have been finally moved to Google. Wareable’s sources believed Fossil might have gotten rather more within the deal.

It’s attainable, and even seemingly, that Google will find yourself utilizing the tech related to Diana. The report notes that the hybrid tech makes use of far much less energy than different smartwatches, and that would assist set an upcoming system other than different sensible watches. Google has lengthy been rumored to be engaged on a “Pixel Watch,” however these rumors have been round for a couple of years now with none gadgets being launched.

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