TAG Heuer has partnered with Intel and Google to develop a luxury smartwatch.
The Swiss watchmaker plans on launching a product that will directly compete with the upcoming Apple Watch.
The announcement was made at the Baselworld trade show in Switzerland.
TAG Heuer, wholly owned by LVMH, said that the smartwatch will be “a product that is both luxurious and seamlessly connected to its wearer’s daily life”.
This is the fist time that a high-end luxury Swiss watch brand has announced the development of a smartwatch.
For both Google and Intel it is a chance to mark their presence in the growing industry.
The average price of a TAG Heuer watch is over $4,500.
The relationship is “perfect” said the president of LVMH’s watch division
Jean-Claude Biver, president of LVMH’s watch division, told the BBC that it made sense for TAG Heuer to approach Google and Intel to develop a smartwatch.
“There are two operating systems: one is Apple’s iOS, the other is Android Wear – who are we to invent another language at that level?”
“It would be absurd, it would be arrogant to believe that we could develop our own [operating system]. It would be a catastrophe to believe such a stupid thing.”
“There is no doubt that we could eventually go to Apple, but why should we do a partnership with Apple, who is producing watches? On the one side they would be partners, on the other a competitor.”
As Google is not producing watches, the relationship is “perfect”, he added.
Increasing demand for luxury “connected watches”
Mr Biver told the Financial Times on Thursday that there is demand for luxury “connected watches”.
“We believe that TAG Heuer is an avant-garde brand and our customers belong to the younger generation. There is a demand for luxury connected watches and we want to satisfy that demand.”
He told the FT that a smartwatch will help boost the number of young people wearing watches.
“If they make young people start to wear watches again, there is more chance that they will want to buy a more expensive timepiece later on,”
The smartwatch is expected go on sale in November this year.
TAG Heuer CEO interview with Bloomberg about developing smartwatches